1) Look through old cards to decide on your size and measure it. Be aware which side has the cover design on and which side has the caption.
2) Purchase some thick drawing paper or cardboard and use a normal drawing pen for the sketches. Coloured pencils, highlighters, water colours or poster paints can add a bit of brightness to the page.
3) Using a ruler, score a folding line down the middle of your paper, making sure to keep the front cover with the fold on your left.
4) Consider seasons and occasions when drawing your greeting cards. There are lots of days you can use these for, including Mothers’ and Fathers’ Day, Christmas, Easter, Valentine’s Day, birthdays, weddings, new babies, retirement and congratulations.
5) If the main image on the front of your card is a cartoon, draw the basic outlines and shapes first and the rest is just a matter of detail.
56Start drawing a pencil sketch without pressing too hard. Use light, smooth strokes and have an eraser handy, so you can rub out any mistakes.
7) Keep relaxed, and sketch fast and freely, instead of creating perfect straight lines. That way, your personal creativity will have time to shine.
8) Christmas is a time for lots of cards, so if this is your first time putting pen to paper, it’s the perfect way to start. There are lots of simple shaped cartoon characters to try out, particularly snowmen.
9) Visual jokes, which don’t need word captions, are great for friends and relatives abroad because no language translations are needed.
10) Animals can be used for all occasions; for example, a dog for a birthday, or a giraffe for a wedding. Don’t forget to add specific detail – the female should be drawn slightly smaller than the male and include little touches like eyelashes.
11) If you don’t feel comfortable drawing an animal form scratch, look out for some in the park or zoo, look at it for three minutes, then quickly draw it.
12) Simple detail is key. A few short pen strokes will give an easy yet realistic view of fur on a cat.
13) Be observant when it comes to your surroundings. If someone inspires you, perhaps it’s something they’ve said, done or worn; don’t be afraid to include it to your greeting card drawing.
14) Remember, drawing shouldn’t be a chore; it’s fun! Stay positive and don’t forget that practice makes perfect.
For more tips on how to perfect the art of drawing, read How to Draw Anything by Mark Linley.