Submittals

 

Hints on how to Submit Articles and Designs

by Betty Burbank, Editor

 

  Hints on how to submit articles and designs
  Photo Hints
  Articles
  Where to send submittals

Hints on how to submit articles and designs
The simplest way to submit photos and articles is via e-mail. Or If you would prefer to burn the photo and text files to a disk and mail it, that is fine.

A print approximately 5-6 inches wide works well. For best results in reproducing pictures we suggest using a minimum of a 4megapixel camera set on the highest resolution. Send the photo file as a jpeg file at 300 dpi or greater. If you are not sure, set your camera to the highest resolution available and we can always reduce it. We can always make it a lower resolution but we can't make it a higher resolution picture without possible loss of detail.

The articles can be typed right in the e-mail or as a Word document attached to the e-mail. We will format it before placement in an issue.

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Photo Hints
Fill the frame of the camera as much as possible while still remaining in sharp focus. The piece should be as large as you can get it in the photograph. Please, do not put more than one piece in a photo. For items that have designs on top and sides such as boxes, take one photo of the top and one of the side. Angle shots that try to show many sides at once distort the design and shape. If you are submitting line drawings, make sure they are as clean as possible.

It is best to use a simple background when taking any pictures that focus on your art. An uncluttered background focuses attention on the subject, resulting in a stronger picture. Place your piece against a plain, non-distracting background.

For those of you who want to take your own pictures, this is the method that I have had the most success with. First, take your photographs outdoors on a clear, sunny day. Clouds reflect color and will distort the colors in your subject, giving them a blue or yellow cast. The sun directly overhead is ideal because there will be less glare on your piece and no shadows to worry about. You will be able to lay some pieces on the ground and stand directly over them. Unless you have special filters and lights, photos taken indoors may end up distorted or the colors changed by the interior lights.

For a background, I cover two pieces of cardboard with a pale gray, untextured material. Flannel or felt works great! One is for behind your piece and the other to set the piece on. This makes a perfect neutral background. Remember, we are not displaying the piece but trying to get the best picture possible. Line up straight with the subject matter so you have the least distortion of the shape. Remember as you are focusing, fill the frame as much as possible.
Look at just one small part of the piece to adjust the focus. For close-ups with a digital camera, use the display screen to compose the picture and then review it. If you think it could be better, you can delete the picture and retake it.

If you are using a regular camera I use 35 mm, 100 speed film. I find this is the easiest to work with and it is not as grainy as higher speed film. From this point you must experiment with your camera to get the best settings for light and contrast. Make note of these settings so when you get the prints back you can write down the ones which duplicated your piece best. Be sure to request glossy prints when having them developed. Prints produced on home printers do not work well as they are not clear and usually show lines from the ink spray and are very grainy (pixilated) after they are scanned for publication.

The shape of some pieces make it impossible to do away with all of the glare spots. There are sprays available at camera shops that can be used to dull the finish. It takes just a touch of this on the spot to minimize or sometimes eliminate it completely. It does not distort the color, it won't hurt the finish on your piece, and it washes off easily when you are done. If you can't locate this type of spray, try patting a small amount of dish detergent on the spot with your finger. Pat it out thin and let it dry thoroughly.

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Articles
Please include any instructions on painting, techniques or any interesting facts about the piece. When the object is a copy from an old print or antique, please give credit to the original artist (if known). Articles should be typed or handwritten very clearly. If you use any proper names or places in your article make sure they are spelled correctly. Any line drawings should be in black ink.

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Where to send submittals
To send via e-mail: support@chinadec.com Please have your name, address, and email address included in any articles/designs you send. This is what will be printed in the magazine so that our readers can contact you.

To send via US mail: The China Decorator PO Box 575, Shingle Springs, CA 95682-0575 Again please have your name, address and email address on any articles/designs you send. Any photographs will be returned to you after publication.

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