Our latest enamel pin design tutorial dives into text, using raised metal and silkscreens in your designs.
Craig points out the most common error that designers make and how to overcome those issues.
Enamel Pin Designer Tools
Illustrator Swipe File. Get access to all the tools we use in Illustrator every day.
Photoshop & Illustrator Software Settings. Ever wonder what the minimum line thickness is? What your kerning should be set at for text? This document answers the FAQs of software settings.
Enamel Pin Design Guide Video Description
Join veteran pin designer and former factory owner Craig Davidiuk for another awesome screencast!
Craig points out the most common error that designers make is not scaling down the pin design to actual size prior to submitting. When you scale a pin down, the areas for holding enamel can shrink below minimum. The minimum area for holding enamel is 2mm. So the lesson here is to apply a small 2mm dot to the smaller ares in your design to test. Fast forward to 2:50 in the video if you are in a hurry.
Another issue we often face is coloured lines or text. It's rare that you can design a pin big enough to hold coloured lines. This is why raised metal is the "best practice" for detail lines, shapes, outlines. And when the need arises to add colour to those lines, you can sometimes use silkscreening. This video outlines the steps required to apply a screen to enamel. Fast forward to 2:12 for this topic.
Transcription Of This Enamel Pin Design Guide Tutorial
Welcome enamel pin designers. My name is Craig Daviduk and I’m the owner of Ultimate Promotions dot biz. I’ve been in the enamel pin industry my entire life.
I actually grew up in my parents pin factory helping them to make pins. That was around for about 30 years before we changed our business model and started importing about 15 years ago.
The biggest struggle we come across with our artist clients is helping them to “see” the finished product. So hopefully this video will bridge that gap.I’m going to try a new way of doing this today [see our channel for 15 other videos like this] and it’s a before and after video. So I hope you like it. We’re going to show you the before art and after picture of the pins so you can see the designs properly.
This design is from a band called Terrance Jack . The reason I pick it is that the number one thing that designers struggle with is text and pin scaling. This pin has two great examples of ways to deal with it.
Graphic designers often submit a design to us at a scale of 6 to 1 or 8 to 1 or even 10 to 1.
So when you are viewing the image on your screen and zooming in and out, you are not getting an accurate picture of what issues might occur in manufacturing. It’s when you scale it down to actual size (not zoom in to your screen) that you reveal these issues.
The other thing I want to point out is that with text on designs we usually try to make that raised metal. This is the other thing designers struggle with is using that raised metal in your designs. The reason we used raised metal for text is that if we surround the raised metal with an enamel colour, it pops. I’d also like to point out that raised black dyed electroplate metal is the designers best friend...because its black! And you can achieve all kinds of artistic effects with black raised metal. The other thing to mention is that this design would NOT work as a gold electroplated pin.
So with the text we’ve used raised metal. But the issue we have to deal with now is the coloured squiggly lines. They are too small to hold colour. So what’s the workaround? You can’t always change your designs so that raised metal is used. So we use this technique called silks screening.
Silkscreening requires you to think in layers. After you design your pin, fill it with colour, and screen over top of larger enamel areas. The nice thing is you are not limited by any colours or scaling issues as long as you have enough area to add the silkscreen to.
The other thing I want to talk about is with this design you have to look at the moon. Look how small that area is. So if I zoom into this, the way I’d determine if this area is big enough to hold colour and in this case, it works. The top and bottom of moon do not meet minimum area requirement but because there is an area to drop the liquid epoxy into, it should flow nicely.
One final note that I’ve been working on a new blog for 10 months. www.enamelpin.info There are dozens of articles and resources for enamel pin design.
If you ever have questions, you can submit designs for feedback and I’ll create your own private screencast. Be sure to subscribe to my channel. Thanks and have a great day.