Designing Business Cards Online

Learn how to create custom business cards using our free templates. BugxPress 
supports do-it-yourself design.


Step 1: Pick a product

Begin by creating an account, or navigating to the Business Card page on our site. Select full color or black and white cards.

On the product page, choose project title and fill out your printing options. Check that 'Design Online' option is selected, then click Continue

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Step 2: Pick a template

Under Template Selection, click Business Cards. Any available templates will appear with previews. Click a design you'd like to start editing (e.g. BC03) and a customization window will appear. 

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Step 3: Edit your card

Editing your business card is simple, the templates come pre-formatted. For the quickest card creation, just enter your details where prompted.

View either side of the card by clicking on the page icons in left-hand sidebar (Your edits will be saved as you navigate between pages).

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Step 4: Change background colors

Change the background color by clicking the large rectangle and then the Edit button that appears. Navigate to Fill and choose your desired color.

For colors other than those listed, enter the corresponding six digit HTML color code (Example format: 0x123456). Click Done in the bottom right corner when you are finished.

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Step 5: Editing text

Enter your content by hovering over desired text and clicking Edit. This opens the Edit Text box which allows changing the font, size, color, and alignment of your text. If you'd only like to change part of the text, simply highlight just that portion.

For other adjustments like letter spacing and rotation, click Open Advanced Options

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To add special characters like copyright symbols, click where you'd like character to go, then navigate to Options, select the G, and a list of available glyphs for your chosen typeface will appear.

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Note: Sometimes when changing the font, it may no longer properly fit in the text box. A red + may appear, or parts of the text will end up on separate lines. Hover over the text until the Scale symbol appears in the bottom right corner. This will allow you to enlarge the text box by clicking and dragging. Reposition the text when finished.  

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Step 6: Delete existing content

To delete an element, hover, then select the X in the left-hand corner. 

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Note: If you delete an element by mistake, clicking the back arrow in the top left corner will undo the change. This feature stores all changes to the document, so you may use it repeatedly to go back as well as forward. 

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Step 7: Add your own image

To upload your own logo/image, click the Add Image button. Navigate to your desired file and select Upload. Accepted files are JPEG, PNG, and PDF. For best results, choose a high-resolution image that is at least 300 ppi (pixels per inch).

A PNG or PDF file that supports transparency is recommended if you'd like the card background color to show through (Example: logos or art with a solid white background). 

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Move the image by clicking and dragging. To adjust, click Edit. If you'd like to change the image size, be sure that Maintain Aspect Ratio is checked. This ensures that your image will not become distorted when resizing.

Click out of the Edit Image box. Adjust the size by hovering over bottom right corner. When Scale appears, click and drag to size image appropriately.

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Step 8: Review your design

When satisfied with your design, click Preview in the upper right corner. Review both sides before continuing, verifying that all information submitted is correct.

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After previewing your business card, make desired changes, then select Finished. Your card should now be added to your shopping cart. 


 

Design Tips: Posters

Posters are usually seen at a distance for only a moment. Viewers need to be drawn to your design out of a myriad of others, and glean vital information quickly. Here are some tips for successful production:

1. Design for output

Knowing how your design will be used, the type of substrate desired, the finished size, where posters may be placed, or if handbills will be made from the same design, are all incredibly helpful in creating an effective completed project. 

The most common printed poster size is tabloid (11x17"). If color is to extend to the edge, then the size you create in InDesign or Illustrator should factor for bleed, either by adding a bleed in your document settings (0.125" on all sides), or by creating your document at output size. Full-bleed tabloid size is 11.25x17.25"

A common poster substrate at Bug Press is 100lb Gloss Book. It is a coated paper with a good thickness that handles ink very well. For even thicker posters, we recommend using our 14pt C2S board.  

2. Consider visual hierarchy 

Visual hierarchy is the arrangement of elements in an order to suggest importance. Objects with the greatest contrast to their surroundings are almost always seen first. There are many ways to create hierarchy in your design, most commonly by adjusting the relative size of objects, color use, and typographic hierarchy. 

  • Relative size: Enlarging an object is one of the easiest ways to give it visual importance. Conversely, reducing size can de-emphasize and lower visibility. Balance is key, making elements too small can render them unreadable, and too large can be overwhelming. In addition, if too many objects are relatively the same size they compete for attention, rendering the design ineffective. 
  • Color: A cohesive, consistent color palette should always be a priority. Splashes of color can be useful in drawing attention to important information. Using high-impact colors like yellow or red, or contrasting colors like blue and orange, can grab attention and prioritize information. Value, saturation, and temperature are also important things to consider with your design. 
  • Typography hierarchy:  Title, subtitle, and body copy should all be organized by size. The title should be the largest and most commanding of all type in your design. The subtitle should be smaller, but still relate to the title. The body copy should be even smaller, but not so small that it becomes illegible. 

3. Legibility from a distance

The what, when, where of your design should be immediately clear and easy to read. Printing out a proof at full-size and viewing it at the distance you expect your audience to read it is a great way to check legibility.

4. Directing the eye

We are 'conditioned' to start at the top left of a page, scroll to the right, and then return to the left, following this pattern down the page. Designing your poster to be read in a similar manner as someone would a book can assist in controlling the impact on your viewers. 

5. Consider typography

Knowing when and how to use big bold flourishes, modern sans-serifs, chunky monotypes, or delicate scripts, can make or break your design. Using the appropriate styles of type for a project are vitally important, and choosing type that is legible for the location and time of your event, or where to get tickets, can increase sales and traffic. Limiting yourself to a select two or three fonts is also generally recommended. 

6. Try using one large visual

Large, dominant images are great for posters. Single item illustrations, close up cropped photos, and oversized display typefaces are all effective ways to create a focal point and command attention. 

7. Wait a day 

Even though deadlines can be tight, try letting your design sit for at least a day before sending it off to the client or printer. This can be helpful in improving the overall design or for noticing errors or typos. 

8. Check your facts

The most important elements of a poster, the what, when, and where must be correct. Confusing something like the dates of an event means that anything sent to your printer is wrong. This adds cost to your project, can delay completion, and can look really bad to a client.

So check the calendar, check the event times, check the address of the venue. And if there's a conflict, notify the client before proceeding.  


Examples of excellent poster design:

How to export a PDF in Adobe Illustrator

Step by step directions for exporting a 'Press Quality' PDF from Illustrator.

You can either download and use our custom BUG PRESS job option, or follow the steps below to include the preferred settings yourself. 

In Illustrator using BUG PRESS job option

To install Bug Press job option:

  1. Download Bug Press job option.
  2. Go to Edit > Adobe PDF Presets...
  3. Click 'Load'
  4. Navigate to 'BUG PRESS_noconvert' and click 'Open'
  5. Then click 'Done'

To use Bug Press job option:

  1. Go to File > Save As...
  2. In new window:
    Save as:_____(Name your file and note the location you are exporting it to)
    For Mac 'Format': Adobe PDF (Print)
    For Windows 'Type': Adobe PDF (Print)
  3. In next window, choose Adobe PDF Preset: 'BUG_PRESS_noconvert"
  4. Then click 'Export'
  5. Examine your PDF in Adobe Acrobat. It should now be ready for upload. 

Export PDF without using a job option:

  1. Go to File > Save As...
  2. In new window:
    Save as:_____(Name your file and note the location you are exporting it to)
    For Mac 'Format': Adobe PDF (Print)
    For Windows 'Type': Adobe PDF (Print)
  3. In next window, choose Adobe PDF Preset: Press Quality
    ~ Under General > Options:  check 'View PDF after Exporting'
    ~ Under Compression > Color Images: Bicubic 400, Grayscale Images: Bicubic 400, Monochrome Images: Bicubic 1200
    ~ Under Marks and Bleeds > Bleed and slug: Check 'Use Document Bleed Settings' (If you set up a bleed, the boxes should display .125 inches for each edge)
  4. Then click 'Export'
  5. Examine your PDF in Adobe Acrobat.

 

How to export a PDF in Adobe Photoshop

Step by step directions for exporting a 'Press Quality' PDF from Photoshop.

* Photoshop is not recommended for PDF preparation if InDesign or Illustrator are available.

You can either download and use our custom BUG PRESS job option, or follow the steps to include the preferred settings yourself. 

In Photoshop using BUG PRESS job option

To install Bug Press job option:

  1. Download Bug Press job option.
  2. Go to Edit > Adobe PDF Presets...
  3. Click 'Load'
  4. Navigate to 'BUG PRESS_noconvert' and click 'Open'
  5. Then click 'Done'

To use Bug Press job option:

  1. Go to File > Save As...
  2. In new window:
  3. Save as: ______ (Name your file and note the location you are exporting it to)
  4. For Mac ‘Format’: Photoshop PDF
  5. For Windows ‘Type’: Photoshop PDF
  6. In next window, choose Adobe PDF Preset: [BUG PRESS_noconvert]
  7. Then click ‘Export
  8. Examine your PDF in Adobe Acrobat. It should now be ready for upload

Export PDF without using a job option:

  1. Go to File > Save As...
  2. In new window:
  3. Save as: ______ (Name your file and note the location you are exporting it to)
  4. For Mac ‘Format’: Photoshop PDF
    For Windows ‘Type’: Photoshop PDF
  5. In next window choose Adobe PDF Preset: [Press Quality]
    Under Compression: Bicubic Downsampling to: 400 Compression: None
  6. Then click ‘Save PDF'
  7. Examine your PDF in Adobe Acrobat

 

How to Use Adobe Job Option Files

Download, open, and use Adobe Job Option Files.

What is a Job Option? 

A JOBOPTION file is an Adobe PDF preset file. It defines the properties of a PDF that's to be generated using programs like InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop. An example of settings defined by JOBOPTION files are image resolution, colorspace, fonts, and printers marks and bleeds. 

Here at Bug Press we've created a custom Job Option that has our preferred PDF settings built in for your personal use. It saves time and ensures that your PDF is correctly formatted. 

To install Bug Press job option in InDesign:

  1. Go to File > Adobe PDF Presets > Define...
  2. Click ‘Load...
  3. Navigate to ‘BUG PRESS_noconvert’; Click ‘Open’.
  4. Then click ‘Done'

To install Bug Press job option in Illustrator and Photoshop:

  1. Go to Edit > Adobe PDF Presets...
  2. Click 'Load'
  3. Navigate to 'BUG PRESS_noconvert' and click 'Open'
  4. Then click 'Done'

How to use Bug Press job option:

  1. In InDesign, go to File > Export...
  2. In new window:
    Save as: ______ (Name your file and note the location you are exporting it to)
    *For Mac ‘Format’: Adobe PDF (Print)
    *For Windows ‘Type’: Adobe PDF (Print)
    Then click ‘Save’ 
  3. In next window, choose Adobe PDF Preset: [BUG PRESS_noconvert]
  4. Then click ‘Export
  5. Examine your PDF in Adobe Acrobat. It should now be ready for upload

 

 

How to export a PDF in Pages for Mac

Directions for exporting a 'Print' quality PDF from Pages for Mac.

Although Pages is not recommended for professional quality file creation, sometimes it's the only option available. To export a PDF from Pages, follow these steps below. 

Step 1:  Click File > Export to > PDF...

Step 2:  In the 'Export Your Document' window, navigate to Image Quality and select 'Best'. 

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Step 3: Choose a name and save location for your file and then click Export.

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How to export a PDF in Microsoft Word

Directions for exporting a 'Print' quality PDF from Microsoft Word.

Although Microsoft Word is not recommended for professional quality file creation, sometimes it's the only option available. To export a PDF from Microsoft Word 2013-2016, follow these steps below. 

Step 1:  Click File, then hover over Export and navigate to Create a PDF/XPS Document.

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Step 2:  In the pop-up window, choose a name for your file and a save location. Be sure that your PDF output is for printing by navigating to Optimize and selecting Standard (publishing online and printing). Click Publish and you're done. 

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How to make a mailing list in Excel

Tutorial: Create a tab-delimited file in Microsoft Excel for mailing lists

When sending mailing lists to a printer, it's incredibly helpful to have a properly formatted file. Follow these steps to make your own.

Create a mailing list in Excel:

1. Open Excel

2. Create your data labels in the first row (First Name, MI, Last Name, Address 1, Address 2, City, State, and Zipcode).

3. Enter in data points in the boxes below your labels. All data should be consistent in field format and all data points must be separated by field.
 

Example format:

First Name MI Last Name Address 1 Address 2 City State ZIP
David A Lightman 123 Eye St. Suite 1 Arcata CA 95521
Sarah J Connor 456 9th St Apt. 1 Arcata CA 95521
Marty S McFly 555 H St. Apt. A Arcata CA 95521

4. Matching the sequence of your data labels, type or paste your customer list directly into Excel. Check for errors and correct formatting. 

5. Save your Excel file.

Create a tab-delimited file from your Excel worksheet:

1. In Excel, click the File tab, then Save As.

2. In the Save as type box, choose Text (Tab delimited)

3. Browse location where you'd like the file saved, then click Save.

4. A dialog box will appear reminding you that only the current worksheet will be saved to the new file. You can save other worksheets as separate text files by repeating this procedure for each. Click Yes.

5. A second dialog box appears reminding you that your worksheet may contain elements that aren't supported by text file formats. Click Yes.

You are now able to send your tab-delimited text file to your printer!