Invisible Voices

a voice for the voiceless

2010 Poplar Spring calendars now available, more to come…

Above is the cover for the 2010 calendar. Click the picture to see a large version in which you can actually read the text.

As usual, it ends up being at the last minute…even though this year I started in August. Lulu has been my preferred print-on-demand calendar provider, and in some ways they still are. However this year I have struggled to deal with some color issues on the printed calendars (which seems to be a Lulu issue, since other print-on-demand services show the colors I expect!). I’ve let the project languish for long periods of time in my frustration.

And so it is that with the end of the year fast approaching, I have certain options to present.

The one that is actually for real done, is through Cafepress. I did a test print of this calendar, and both the print quality and color are excellent. I ordered it on Tuesday night, and it arrived Friday (Premium shipping), which surprised me in how fast it arrived. Cafepress is extremely limited, however. 12 months, and that’s it. I prefer the option of a 13-month calendar so that I can have an “extra” month with info on the sanctuary. For the Cafepress option, the sanctuary-info month is December. So be it. I also have no say in the holidays posted on the calendar.

I have two other test runs of calendars coming in next week through Lulu. One is a B&W calendar, which might or might not be appealing, depending on your taste. The second is my final attempt at jacking with the colors to get a decent print from Lulu. I won’t make the color calendar publicly available until I am convinced that it is worth making public. (For the record, others have said that the previous version’s colors are fine. I, however, wanted to throw up when I saw them. Regardless of my distaste, I did a print run so that we’d have the calendars in time for Poplar Spring’s Open House in October.)

If you have last year’s calendar, you know more or less what you’d be getting, just different pictures, of course. And, based on feedback, I’ve added short bits of text to the pictures so that the basic story of each animal is on the picture. It definitely adds to the advocacy potential, and I’ve had several people make it a point to tell me how much they feel it adds to the calendar to have these stories there.

Which is a damn good thing, because it was more work than you’d imagine to get the stories, do a draft, get feedback, get the alignment right, and on and on. Pain in the ass. But that’s okay, if it’s worth it, which it seems to be so far.

I’m posting this today, even though my preferred options (Lulu) have not been vetted and are not yet public because if anyone was wanting a calendar in time for the upcoming Friday holiday, you can order the Cafepress version by the midnight Sunday (Premium shipping) or noon Monday (1 day shipping), and be guaranteed to receive the calendar in time for Friday.

If anyone prefers the Lulu B&W version, and is willing to take a small risk (in that I haven’t seen my copy yet) and pay expedited shipping by 6pm EST on Monday to get it in time for Friday, let me know and I’ll make that version available.

If you’re like me and are habitually late with gifting deadlines, or if you’re getting it just for yourself / for the end of the year (especially if you have my calendar from last year, and thus have a handy January 2010 month on last year’s calendar), then you might as well wait for a few more days until I make the Lulu calendars public.

As I did last year, I’m not selling these at cost, so that I don’t undercut other calendar makers. However, all profits will be donated to Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary.

Thanks for considering purchasing a PSAS calendar, especially given the last minute availability.


11 responses to “2010 Poplar Spring calendars now available, more to come…

  1. Sheryl December 19, 2009 at 4:19 pm

    I bought two! One for me and one for my Dad.


  2. Kelly G. December 19, 2009 at 4:52 pm

    Oh, I was hoping you’d make a calendar again this year! I meant to buy one last year, but I think I just got lazy and then forgot about it. Awful excuse, I know.

    Mine’s for personal use, so I think I’ll hold off until you have a verdict re: Lulu. I don’t mind 12 months, but of course 13 is better!

  3. Deb December 19, 2009 at 5:12 pm

    @Sheryl – thanks!

    @Kelly – I’m the queen of procrastination, so I definitely understand! I’ll post about the Lulu versions as soon as they arrive. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Sorrow December 19, 2009 at 6:25 pm

    My SiL always sends me one she makes , it has a Zazzle logo on the back? It’s an 18 month calendar.. You ever try them?

  5. Deb December 19, 2009 at 7:46 pm

    @Sorrow – I’ve looked into zazzle, but I’ve never tried them. They’re expensive! $19.99 is the base price for a 12 month, iirc! I’ve heard really good things about them, but the high base price has always stopped me from giving them a try.

  6. The voracious Vegan December 20, 2009 at 9:34 am

    I love calendars and this one looks lovely. Well done!

  7. Mary Martin December 20, 2009 at 11:05 am

    I’m so excited. Thanks.

  8. Deb December 20, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    @tvv – thanks!

    @Mary – there’s another lenny picture inside too – of him and Jeremy playing. ๐Ÿ™‚ I know, it’s never enough goats for you, but maybe next year I’ll be ready to deal with printing issues and will get that goat and geese calendar done for you!

  9. Kristen December 20, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    I know how you feel Deb!!!! I ordered calendars through snapfish this year for my family. First they took forever to ship the calendars to me, I actually thought they weren’t going to arrive on time…Second when I got them the pictures were dark and awful!!! So I had to send the calendars back and I just redid them through Kodak so hopefully, crossing fingers, they will turn out ok, and arrive on time…but maybe next year I’ll try cafepress or lulu if you think they are a good service to go through…

  10. Deb December 22, 2009 at 6:27 pm

    I’ve never used snapfish or kodak, so I don’t know how their quality compares; I’ve needed print-on-demand services, which is much more limited. Cafepress, Lulu, and Zazzle seem to be about it for print on demand.

    If you’re doing calendars for your family yearly, you might want to try a local printer next year. You might get better results.

    One of the things to watch for (or to ask about if they don’t make it clear in their FAQ or whatever, if you keep ending up with unexpected results) is whether they require the pics to be in rgb or cmyk. Also, as a general rule, prints will be a little darker than what they look like on screen, but it’s more that you’ll lose detail in the shadows than the entire thing looks dark and awful. It can be so frustrating to figure out!

    By the end of my own experiments I’ll have several versions of the lulu calendars and a cafepress calendar. Next time we’re at the sanctuary at the same time I’ll try to remember to bring them so you can see what you think of the difference.

  11. Pingback: Lulu versions of PSAS 2010 calendars now available! « Invisible Voices

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