100% Maine. Family owned since 1965

Home of the Makers Guild of Maine

Advertising Makes Me Sweat

More accurately, creating an ad makes me sweat…and suffer the urge to hide behind my computer and play solitaire pretending that I’m thinking.

We started with this picture…taken last June

I’ve collected all of the necessary tools for success…digital camera, photoshop, ability to search the web for endless amounts of advice…and I read about marketing any time a compelling book or magazine article crosses my path…but the concept of finding the perfect image, refining the message to a three-second absorption rate and packaging the bundle attractively is like the holy grail…is it real or a myth?  In any event, it’s paralyzing stimulating.

Then I changed to iris's color to pink… cropped the picture and saturated the colors for the print page

Those who know us know that it took years (seven I think) to get a logo that we liked on our coffee mugs.  We spent two years of planning and revising cut-outs of constructions paper to create a billboard and we’ve been working on the new website for 18 months now (but we should be launching sometime during February).  I comfort myself with the knowledge that other small businesses have the same problem but my blood boils anytime someone suggests that we just cut the bull____ and hire a designer.

Now comes the text…how many words is too many words? Is it legible? Is it attractive?

Without getting into a long discussion, trust me, we’re not ready for a designer…our world is hands on and we like it that way…for better or worse.

In my world, design is very organic…not that far away from growing, dyeing and spinning my own wool into yarn for mittens and sweaters…it’s a slow process that needs gestation and cultivation before we can harvest the results (gosh, in words that sounds like the dictionary’s definition of procrastination).

Moving right along, my last few days of work were centered around creating an ad for the Belfast Chamber guide book…just a tiny ad…1/12 of a co-op page advertising Searsport…and these pictures represent the steps to the final project…

The final ad, text "pumped up," rock darkened and now the quote is the same delicate pink as where the sun hit's the iris

Why do I tell you all of this…self-indulgence?  No, it’s to remind all of us that small businesses really are still the backbone of the camping industry (although I concede that there’s more and more corporations moving in) and if our ads don’t look slick, at least you know they’re from the heart.

7 responses to “Advertising Makes Me Sweat”

  1. I like the Iris with your address. “A picture is worth a thousand words!” I just made that up. Check me out in the “Quotations” book. Anybody else given credit in there is an imposter!

    We’re heading home first of March. Clear out the snow! Don’t let any more in!

    Jan and David

  2. The ad is beautiful. Concise and to the point. Makes me want to get there just as soon as possible. My feet are already itching to get there for the fiber college days this summer. Would you like a class for the altered books, or maybe for the beeswax on canvas medium? Or something else? &-}

    • Patricia, it’s great to hear from you! You should apply with both classes and anything else that makes your heart sing because your imagination is better than mine.
      Thanks for commenting on the ad…now we’re sweating over website banners…more to follow

  3. Looks very nice ! I’m sure i am late to the party , but have you thought about or done bumper stickers. since your customers are by far your best source of advertising. just something simple like “SSOC ” or http://www.campocean.com. while i am not a big fan of them as a rule, I would gladly put one on my vehicle!!

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