Many artists now use print on demand sites (POD) as a great way to get their art out in front of the public. This brings many advantages to both the artist and you the buyer of art, not lest of which is the cost and access to people from around the world.
For the artist is the saving of not having to pay up front to have a selection of their art printed in different sizes and on different products so that their stall at the local craft fair will look appealing to the public. Not to mention the cost of renting the stall at the craft fair and cost, hassle of getting their work too and from the craft fair and setting up the stall. For some artists the though of selling their art or worse still being face to face with the public and having to talk about their art gives them such anxiety that they give up before they even start.
POD sites take a lot of this away for the artist, for a relatively small up front fee and or a percentage the artist can upload all of their work onto a POD site and even have their art available on products the artist had not even though of. In addition to the above the artist also has no worries about taking payment, packing & shipping, printing or returns as the POD site takes care of all of this and more.
So what about you the buyer, what do you get out of the POD site? First and foremost is a huge selection of art and artists, on a range of products, far bigger than you would get at any craft fair. You get to see and buy the art of up and coming artists from around the world that can not be found any where else. You also get to see styles and subjects of art that you like and not what is dictated by some manager whose main concern is how well the greeting card will sell!
So who are these POD sites? Well they come in all sizes and styles but two of the biggest have to be Zazzle and Cafepress they both offer art on a huge range of products as well as greeting cards. Then you get sites like Redbubble and Fine Art America that started off more focused on the artists needs but over time have grown to look after the buyer as well.
If you are looking for greeting cards then one POD site stands out from the rest, Greeting Card Universe as they only sell greeting cards, their motto is “Any greeting card imaginable” this is followed up with “if you do not see what you are looking for just ask”. If you can not find a greeting card for the occasion or with the subject or in the style you want, then you can leave a message on the site telling them what you want, this is then passed on to all the artists on the site, you will then be sent a link to where the new cards that the artists have produced. Secondly, if you find a greeting card that is almost perfect but just needs a few changes then you can contact the artist directly and ask them to make the changes, all this at no extra cost to you.