Fiasco in Florida

Depending on your situation, twenty-four hours can seem like an eternity. If, say, you’re stranded at Chicago’s O’Hare airport during the weekly blizzards we have here come winter, you’re likely going to feel every minute of each of those twenty-four. On the other hand, if you find yourself having to make a complete movie with set rules and people you’ve never met before, well, you’re going to be looking at your watch at the end, wondering what happened to make time slip by so quickly. That’s the story we heard from Andrew Kamphey, Managing Director of the Film Fiasco 24-hour film fest:

“I got the idea for the Film Fiasco August of 2004 after I had wanted to make a short movie within a day and became upset at the lack of infrastructure that Gainesville, FL and the University of Florida had for short video production. There was no community to speak of in an otherwise creative city. I didn’t want to start something because I knew that someone else could do it better. I started the Film Fiasco out of a need. By just challenging myself to make a movie in 24 hours, I had inadvertently challenged the city of Gainesville. I started talking to people about my idea and finally told it to my friend Priscilla who said ‘Let’s do it!’ Two months later was the first Film Fiasco and the movies you watch on the DVD were all created in 24 hours.”

“There are similar events all around the country in no association with each other and a 48 hour video competition that has events in many cities. We have made ours stand out by including the element of signing up actors independently of the movie-making teams. Two actors are assigned to each team that must include them in the movie, besides the required elements that all of the teams get. This ends up being the toughest part of putting on the event but it makes it special as it speaks to another group of people.”

“There were so many similarities of how the Film Fiasco got started and the beginning of Jewelboxing. From what I know, you guys looked for something that would match your standards of quality, while I looked around for something to quench my creative thirst. Neither of us found anything available out there, so we just made our own, Film Fiasco and Jewelboxing. I think both of the products speak of our passion for something so great that we took on the challenge ourselves. That always gets me, so I had to go with it. I picked up the whole Studio.”

Here’s to all the people making interesting things, in whatever time frame they so desire, in Santa Barbara, Blackstone, Salt Lake City, San Diego, Etobicoke, Toronto, Wicomico, Phila, Santa Rosa, Cedar Park, Los Angeles, Savannah, Irvine, Dulles, Round Lake, Kansas City, Winston-Salem, Brookline and Brompton.

November 9, 2017 | Category: Blog, Team

Sikhs Hit the Streets

 

Earlier this week, we received a note from Jewelboxing user Sartaj Singh Dhami, letting us know about his latest project, a documentary he had produced about the Sikh religion. We’re all big film buffs here and we’ve made a few shorts in our time as well, so we’re always really happy when someone like Sartaj thinks enough of our cases to package his hard work. And it’s all the more flattering when it’s a film with an important message. Here’s Sartaj’s report:

Sikh on the Street, created by my production company, Dashmesh Pictures, is a short film that challenges the perceptions of everyday Americans to what they think of those who don a turban and beard. Are they Muslims? Are they Arabs? Or are they members to another unique community?”

“The film asks people on the street who the Sikhs are. Unknown to most, 99% of all individuals encountered in the western world that have turbans and beards are adherents to the Sikh religion, a monotheistic faith based in the Punjab region of India. Since the unfortunate attacks of 9/11, many Sikhs have encountered unwanted backlash due to their unique identities by being mistaken as followers, or adherents, to Islamic radical terrorists. Filmed in 2005, Sikh on the Streetchallenges the everyday Joe to see if they know who the Sikhs are after large amounts of outreach had been done by the Sikh community.”

“With the recent success of film, such as being shown in several film festivals and incorporated into curriculums at Iowa State and Harvard University, a new level of professionalism was needed to be added that was also economical. Jewelboxing allowed for this by providing the tools needed in order to create DVD box art and casing with simplicity. By using the templates and a standard inkjet printer, our cases were created with ease, allowing for a professional look, within a reasonable budget, that promotes recipients to actually open and learn more about the project. Thanks Jewelboxing!”

Here’s to hoping that all sorts of people are being correctly identified and having their work appreciated in Gilbert, New York, St. Paul, Milaca, San Jose, Grand Rapids, Parma, Minneapolis, Fair Lawn, South Miami, Great Neck, Riverside, Kansas City, Baton Rouge, North Vancouver, Lakewood, Los Angeles, Sterling Heights, Cleveland and Salt Lake City.

Drawing the Lines

Dawson, here at the studio, always has his eye out for groups putting together something particularly interesting. The other day, he passed an e-mail reading, “Hey, check these guys out.” Check them out we did. They’re the Vilppu Store, selling educational DVDs made by famous artist and go-to animation expert, Glenn Vilppu. They’ve just recently started using Jewelboxing King cases to package their collections of multiple training discs and we got the whole story from Samantha Vilppu who runs the shop (along with being Glenn’s daugher-in-law):

“Glenn is world renowned for teaching artists, especially animators and CG artists, how to draw. His main areas of emphasis are in life drawing, the human figure and animals. In the 1970’s, he went to work at Disney as an artist. While there he quickly moved into a position of teaching the animators there how to draw. This evolved into him setting the standard for the animation industry to this day. He’s a teacher’s teacher, meaning that many people now teaching drawing or animation originally learned from him. His books are used as textbooks in many art schools across the country, and are on the list of “must haves” by the animation studios. Many of the art school libraries have his entire collection of DVDs. In fact, many artists are collectors of every educational product he has ever produced! Which brings us to why we started using Jewelboxing.”

“The regular cases that his individual DVDs had been packaged in were not ideal for the library shelves, either in the schools or in the private libraries of artists, where they like to show off their collection of all the DVDs in our bulk sets . Since we took over the store, we have been steadily improving the Vilppu image and branding and decided that we would upgrade to Jewelboxing King cases for those clients who purchased the full collections. We considered other alternatives, but decided that Jewelboxing would give us an edge of quality that the other options didn’t. Since using Jewelboxing, we have seen the sales of our sets (in which the cases are included at no extra charge) increase dramatically – in fact we have seen the two best months out of 2 years already this year, because of the increased sales of these special collections.”

Here’s to hoping everything is looking perfectly illustrated with all the characters in Austin, Montgomery, Temecula, Housatonic, Chicago, Atlanta, Scottsdale, Santa Barbara, Highland Falls, Los Angeles, Hollywood, Toronto, Spingville, Gainesville, Venice, Santa Monica, Morrisville, New York, Davis, La Palma, Brampton, Mililani, Vancouver, New Brunswick, Nisswa, Rochester and Fairfield.

A Touch Lighter, A Lot Better

We’re nothing if not constant tinkerers around here. If you’ve been following this blog, you’ve probably noticed that, twice during the last three years, we’ve announced that we were rolling out new and improved paper stock. Today we’re doing it again.

We’ve listened to our customers’ requests for what they’d like to see improved and also have taken into consideration new printer technology. The old adage goes that you can’t please all of the people all of the time, but if we can get that percentage running at around 99%, we figure we’re doing pretty well.

Here’s the rundown on what’s new and improved:

* Our custom-milled paper is still a bright, solid stock that really holds ink well, as it always has, but we’ve made it a touch lighter (the old paper was 12 mil, while the new batch is 9.5 mil thick). This means it will feed more smoothly and through a wider variety of printers.

* We’ve vastly improved quality control. New dies and tighter tolerances have improved the paper’s performance relative to the software templates, keeping it much more consistent, batch-to-batch. Also, the perforations are stronger and less prone to accidental separation, while remaining just as easy to punch out.

* The coating on the paper has been modified, making it less “dusty.” This is a barely-noticeable change, but it’s healthier for your printer, as less dust means less wear and tear on rollers and print heads.

These changes should be particularly helpful for users of color laser printers and finicky ink-jets. The new paper will feed and print better and minimize harmful dust residue (we still recommend using the manual feed tray — keeping the paper path as simple as possible always helps).

We’re hoping you’ll find this new stock perfect for your next project. All King (DVD-sized) template paper shipped after May 1, 2007 will incorporate these features and our next batch of Standard (CD-sized) template paper will meet these specs, too. And, as always, we’re eager to hear your thoughts about it, so feel free to drop us a line and let us know what you think.

A Quick Offer: if you’d like to give the new paper a try, just order a 20pack of Kings before the end of the day on Friday, May 11th and then drop a note to “papergeek at jewelboxing dot com” saying you did, and we’ll send you a $10 instant rebate. Cha-ching.

The Cutting Edge

It’s always fun to hear from Jeff Rutzky. He’s participated in most of the fun quickie contests we occasionally run over at Coudal, drops us e-mails to let us know when he’s found something cool to check out, and was one of the first people to mail us something for our Swap Meat experiment (check out his amazing Kirigami sculpture of Mies van der Rohe’s Crown Hall he made from a Masahiro Chatani design). It makes it all the better that the man’s got loads of talent. He’s the author of several books about Origami and has worked in designing publications, products and a whole host of other projects for an impressive roster of clients, including everyone from Playboy to the Weekly World News. This past month, he finally got around to trying Jewelboxing for the first time, and here’s his report about the project he used the cases for:

“Pro bono, I took a great interest in helping Vanessa Gould and Green Fuse Films to create an identity with a clean, modern look and feel. Her film, Exploring Origami uncovers some of the mystery behind why origami is so intriguing to children, as well as being so critical to modern and future science. I’m also trying to encourage the former-Wall Street exec -turned-film-director to be consistent with fonts and screen graphics. I know she has a limited budget, but free After Effects house calls are just an F-train away.”

Here’s to hoping all is being folded just-so and all the cuts are being made with precision in Washington DC, Cambridge, New York, Jackson, Los Angeles, Colorado Springs, Covington, Utica, Torquay, Monrovia, Columbus, Stevenson Ranch, Bedford, Brooklyn, Lafayette, Valley Stream, Burbank, Santa Barbara, Middletown, Houston, Conroe, Newton, and Jersey City.

‘Nico’ Case

You’d be hard pressed to find anyone at Jewelboxing who doesn’t own at least one Velvet Underground box set. That’s why we loved receiving a note from Jan-Frederic Goltz in Braunschweig, Germany, about a recent project he put together, expertly using Jewelboxing Kings, for a local theater company putting on a production we really, really hope makes it over here to the States sometime soon. Here’s the whole story from Jan-Frederic:

“‘Nico – Shinx aus Eis’ is a theater performance about Christa Päffgen (the lead singer in The Velvet Underground and Nico) based on her life story and on a book by Werner Fritsch (‘Suhrkampverlag, Frankfurt am Main’) which was put on by the Mehrsicht Projekt Theater in Braunschweig, Germany. They asked me to film and edit the play and I choose to make a complete project out of it.

“The result is this DVD with the video of the theater performance of “Nico” with a total length of one hour and 15 minutes. It additionally contains a multi-angle video layer for each of the three chapters which have a length from 5 to 10 minutes and can be viewed by pressing the angle button on the dvd player’s remote control. These 3 multi-angle parts tell the story in a very different and experimental way. For example, with elements of found-footage from the 60s and 70s, or with self-filmed video content, this little feature gives the spectator the oppportunity to see the performance as a chronological part of the story, which haunts the same plot, but from a different point of view.

“On the DVD, one can also find an installation video (a found-footage clip) which was played in the foyer before the show and a 5 minute long trailer for promotional purposes.”

Here’s to hoping the projects, involving girls in Chelsea or otherwise, are going as splendidly in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Goleta, Chicago, Storm Lake, Kearney, Portland, New York, St. Louis, Brooklyn, Bonita Springs, Boston, San Diego, Houston, Bloomington, Denver, Tulsa, Hampton, Vancouver, Lackawanna, Saint Francis and Austin.

November 9, 2017 | Category: Blog, Life

Covering the Classics (Sometimes With Talent Even!)

It’s always a great day here at Jewelboxing HQ when someone sends us a copy of an album. There’s enough music geeks here in the office, so the reason why is obvious. Who doesn’t like getting new music out of the blue? It’s all the better when there’s a hook to the whole thing, like when we got in Henry Cline’s latest disc for his Hippopotty Records Music Club, “The Best and Worst Covers.” It’s filled with just that: an eclectic mix of good cover versions of songs (The Brazilian Girls doing the Talking Heads’ Crosseyed and Painless) , horrible ones (the infamous Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds by William Shatner), and miscellaneous, unusual finds (like a lo-fi, live recording of Bjork doing Petula Clark’s Downtown with the Brodsky Quartet). And to make things all the better, the whole deal is beautifully packaged in one of our Standard cases, with a 15 page booklet filled with liner notes and images of truly horrible album covers. Here’s from Henry about the whole project:

“I’m a 46 year old camera operator living in Los Angeles who spends all his free time working on projects like Hippopotty Records Music Club (HRMC), or photography, my website, my blogs, my friends blogs, my next HRMC (even though it is a year away), oh and much much more. Too bad I do not have much free time.

“So, a few years ago I came across an article in Wired magazine about music sharing groups that were sprouting up all over in business settings. Co-workers making compilations for other co-workers and experiencing great bliss in this form of music sharing. I thought, “That is a cool idea, I want that as well”. And thus, Hippopotty Records Music Club was born.

“A cast of thirteen folks from around North America each have a calendar month where they need to make and distribute a compilation of there choice. That is pretty much it.

“At issue number 38, or so, and many gigs of solid music, HRMC rocks on! After a couple of years of circulation it has proved to be very successful and now there seems to be a waiting list to get involved. In a perfect world I would like to see satellite Potty groups gush forth and start a mini-ring of over-lapping music-loving fools all getting great ideas on new music to listen to from veritable strangers.”

Let’s hope there are bands out there working on clever covers about songs already written concerning the lives of those in Brooklyn, Baton Rouge, Bothell, Malibu, Santa Monica, Boulogne Billancourt, Los Altos, Straffan, New York, Derby, Phoenix, Carlsbad, Los Angeles, Venice, Evanston, Novi, Bellingham, Avon, Chicago, Charlotte, Stevenson Ranch, Wickliffe, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Nashua, San Francisco, Vancouver, and Detroit.

Harnessing the Atom

We like to think we’re fairly proficient with motion graphics work around here. We’ve jostled our fair share of keyframes in doing work that our clients seem to really like, but when we get samples in from people like Andrea Toniolo, we feel like downright rank amateurs. Though it would be hard not to when making comparisons to him. His animation work is incredible and on a level that makes you want to keep learning the tools of the trade for as long as it takes, just to try and figure out how he does it. So it goes without saying that we’re honored that he chose Jewelboxing to package his new reel. Here’s from Andrea:

“I’m an Italian director specializing in long green screen shots and match-moving works. Some weeks ago I finished my showreel for 2007 and I was planning to meet with some agencies to work with. The problem for me was making high-quality, “eye-candy” packaging without the cost of industrial printing. I start searching some solutions on the web (with little hope) and finally found your web site. I was impressed by the examples page.”

“Making my own jewelbox with your templates was very fun! Really creative process, because it’s not important to convert RGB to CYMK or other annoying stuff for industrial printing. Only design, test and print! And also, I’m not forced to always make the same cover. I can modify from time to time to fill my specific needs.”

“One thing impresses me overall: the paper with king tray insert always fit in a perfect way when the cover comes closed, without tears or wrong folds. You make my life easier, concentrating only in creative process.”

Here’s to hoping life has become equally as easy in Mountain View, Duluth, Saint-Avold, Boise, New York City, Chicago, Farmingville, Baltimore, Atlanta, West Des Moines, Dallas, Williamsville, Louisville, Opa Locka, Los Angeles, Southfield, Washington DC, Portland, Culver City, Market Rasen, Wood Dale, Lawrence, and Worcester.

November 9, 2017 | Category: Blog, Life

Ice Cold

We hear from Jewelboxing users all the time who are packaging their albums, mix discs and demo reels, and we love it because those are the kinds of things we designed the system for. But we also really dig getting letters in from people like Pete Freitag of Foundeo, a company dedicated to creating software for web development, because it proves that there’s this whole other world of different outlets for using the cases beyond music, photos, and films. Here’s from Pete:

“Foundeo’s fusionKit is a CD packed full of software for ColdFusion web developers (ColdFusion is a programming language for building web applications made by Adobe). It features several components handy for building Web 2.0 applications with ColdFusion.”

“We choose Jewelboxing because we wanted to create an attractive product, easily. We were intrigued by the Photoshop templates, and they really made it easy to get the job done. It took just a few hours to get the first prototype printed. The jewel cases alone help make the product attractive, and unique. Overall I think going with Jewelboxing was a big win for our brand.”

We hope the wins are coming in equally as big for the brands, businesses, individuals, or otherwise, in Washington DC, Grand Rapids, La Jolla, Aurora, Corte Madera, Cambria Heights, San Francisco, San Diego, Columbia, Ballwin, Salinas, Plano, New York, Newton, and Austin.

Meeting the New Neighbours

Granted, talking about Christmas in February is a bit odd. It’s even a little too early for one of those “Christmas in June!” sales at a local department store. But when you hear from The Neighbourhood, an amazing new firm in Manchester, about the beautiful holiday film they made in December, the time of year takes a back seat. Here’s from Jon Humphreys, Creative Director:

“The Neighbourhood is a CGI imaging/animation company now in our 6th month of business. One of our mission statements is to keep creating self-generated pieces of work. So we thought we would celebrate Christmas and officially announce our arrival into the world with a short animation. After its online release, we received such great response from around the world it made good sense to send out DVD copies to friends, clients etc.”

“After a little searching we discovered the fantastic Jewelboxing solution for the disc packaging. This proved to be a stylish and cost effective way of personalizing our film and present as gifts as we could design and print our own cover with ease. We did decide to make things a little difficult for ourselves though by making 180 in a 2 day time frame to make the last post before Christmas! [here’s a time lapse video of the process] Things would have been a lot tougher if we had to hand cut every cover/insert individually though!”

We’re really happy to have helped The Neighbourhood make their flashy holiday entrance a bit more special. And we hope, even in February, they’re still feeling a little of that spirit in Copenhagen, Toledo, Houston, Los Angeles, Vancouver, Birkdale, Cincinnati, San Jose, Santa Ana, New York, Breckenridge, Minneapolis, Spokane, Grand Rapids, Charlottenlund, East Brunswick, Markham, Manitou Springs, Paoli, Dallas, and Clapham.

November 9, 2017 | Category: Blog

The Sporting Life

People have used Jewelboxing for pitches to major, big league clients, like pro sports teams and multi-million dollar retail sponsors. Or motion graphics firms delivering a final project to be displayed on the gigantic screens in the 50,000 seat stadiums. But while not everything involved with sports has to be so grandiose, it’s still important to always look your best, as we learned in this write-up by a recent first-time Jewelboxing user:

“A soccer mom contracted me to shoot her kid’s all star game. It was a standard two camera set-up — not a lot of flash. I tried to ESPN things up a bit, tossing in a running scoreboard and suchlike. In the end, though, the project still felt light. Sturdy, but light. I needed to knock the first impression out of the park to justify my commission.”

“I purchased some Kings — my first order from you guys — and bought some stock photos. The inner tray and disc just blended so nicely and the whole thing had a really good weight, as opposed to paper sheaths and the usual jewel casing, it felt like it belonged on a shelf for display. I sent them out and my client immediately contacted me for two more sets.”

“*cheesy grin, thumbs up* Thanks, Jewelboxing!”

Let’s hope the grins are as cheesy and the thumbs are as high in Middleboro, Ladera Ranch, Glasgow, Tallahassee, New York, Detroit, Boca Raton, Reutlingen, Portland, Geneve, Grand Rapids, Carolina, Amityville, Nashville, La Mesa, Maple Ridge, Saint-Avold, Lake Oswego, Liverpool, Breckenridge, Elmwood Park, Copenhagen, Anchorage, Spring and Sewanee.

Jewelboxing, Friend to the Small Business

If you go back to the very first post on this blog, you’ll read that one of the primary reasons we started Jewelboxing was because we were a small firm looking for packaging that looked good and was simple enough to use it quickly and easily with outstanding results. So it always makes us happy to hear from someone like Daniel Scrivner, owner of a small firm himself, who’s been using Jewelboxing with, yep, outstanding results. Here’s from Daniel:

“Scrivner Creative is a very small studio (only me and my brother) that specializes in creative solutions for everything from branding to web design, and our specialty: flexible and secure websites and backends. Last year, we started looking around for a cool way to create and package our showreel to get out to potential clients and businesses in our area. We were looking for something that was relatively inexpensive and could be easily updated, as we’re a relatively new business and are changing all the time. So we looked around, and found a ton of options, but most were either too expensive (in the $1,000s) or weren’t going to be easy or cheap to update (i.e. using a professional printer for packaging). But then we finally stumbled upon Jewelboxing, and found exactly what we were looking for.”

we were able to design, print, put together and send out our showreels whenever necessary. It took advantage of the tools we already had in house — like a great color printer. And just worked perfectly for us.”

“For the design of our showreel, we wanted to create something that caught the eye and made the recipient want to check out the entire showreel. Denis Radenkovic of 38onetook care of the eye catching part with his amazing illustration on the front cover. And we handled the more subtle details of text, color and organization.”

Here’s hoping for similar results in firms of all sizes in Adairsville, Atlanta, Los Angeles, St. Andrews, Fairfield, Downey, Milwaukee, Roseville, Aurora, Prospect, St. Louis, Boonville, Ridgewood, Santa Barbara, San Francisco, Plantation, New York, Broomfield, Greenville, Cambridge, Chicago, Honolulu, Montreal, West Hollywood, El Monte, Dallas, London, Nottingham, Randallstown, Spokane, and Waukesha.

Flip-Flopping for the Single-Side User

Here’s a little trick of the trade Dawson came up with a while back that we thought might be useful to have at your disposal, should the need every arrive.

As the story goes, we were putting together the DVD copies of our first ever short film, Copy Goes Here, and, of course, we were using Jewelboxing. The trick is, we only wanted to use the front and back of the cover booklet, with nothing printed inside because we had it all pretty well taken care of using the front and back. However, we wanted to avoid people wondering if there was something inside the booklet and taking it out to look, only to find it empty. So Dawson suggested that we just swap the images, the one for the outside cover and the one for the inside facing the disc. That way, you’d still print the front section of the booklet out like normal and when you fold it, now you’ve got the crease facing the outside edge and what’s usually the opening of the booklet now facing the spine of the case. Make sense? Visuals always seem to help, so here’s a photo:

Here’s hoping there were a lot of holiday wishes delivered, printed backwards or otherwise, by way of a shiny new Jewelboxing case in Moscow, Muskegon, Austin, Tampa, Brooklyn, Cleveland, Lewisville, Manti, Madison, West Des Moines, El Cerrito, Ames, Marion, San Diego, Ottawa, Brussels, Southport, London, Woodstock, Columbus, Tumwater, and Playa del Ray.

November 9, 2017 | Category: Blog

‘Tis the Season for Another Great Mix Disc Idea

We had our Coudal Partners/Jewelboxing holiday party last week and while it was a lot of fun, it’s difficult for any party to compete with the one put together by Ascent Stage’s John Tolva. Just reading about the whole thing makes you think, “I’ve got to befriend this guy as soon as possible so I get an invite next year.” There was a photo booth, homemade hard cider, an open DJ table for anyone to try their hands at, and even a multi-room train set. And then he went the extra mile and made us happy by incorporating Jewelboxing into the whole bacchanalia. Like last year, when he used Tic Tacs in the case spines (an idea we borrowed to put to use for our Holidisc packages), he once again made mix discs for every attendee. But this time around, he had a whole new idea:

“This year I searched high and low for glow sticks that were the proper size for the hinge chamber. My idea was to have red and green glowing CDs. Turns out glow sticks are made in a bewildering variety of shapes and sizes for everything from costumes to golf balls to fishing lures. This last category — called Lunker Lights — was the perfect size for the chamber. The effect was stunning — though it only lasted for about 8 hours. Rave on!”

Here’s to hoping that the holidays are just as bright for all those in London, Ferguson, Austin, Sydney, Santiago, Frankfurt, Little Elm, Naples, Schamburg, Saint George, Miami, Ventura, Boston, Yonkers, Sarasota, Sherman Oaks, Marcola, Fall River, Brattleboro, Fallbrook, Greenfield, Hollywood, Seattle, Fort Washington, Mount Vernon, Surrey, and Charlotte.

November 9, 2017 | Category: Blog

The Perfect Pick-Me-Up, Now Available on Disc

If you ever find yourself having a rough day, we’ve found the perfect solution: Erin Vey’s photography. Her work is bright, touching, and colorful, even when it’s in black and white. She’s able to beautifully capture those millisecond-long moments that elude the vast majority of us with cameras, and that’s the reason she’s been so successful and in demand. So it stands to reason that, when she decided to start offering her clients DVD slideshows packaged in Jewelboxing Standard cases, that they’d follow artistic suit and be just a joy to look at. And that they are. Here’s from Erin:

“A Seattle native, I work as a natural light, on-location photographer. Most of my clients are babies, children, and families, and when I’m lucky I get to work with my biggest passion — dogs.”

“I recently added the ability to purchase DVD Slideshows & High Resolution Digital Negatives to my pricelist and was looking for a unique way to showcase them. I wasn’t satisfied with the options at my local office store and wanted something with a WOW factor. A friend referred me to your site, I watched the fun video, and was instantly hooked.”

“The Design: After many iterations of design concepts, and my husband saying “just pick one!” I settled on this design. I think it is simple yet whimsical. The content of the client slideshow determines the color of their case based on the general tone of the outfits chosen during the photo session. Clients who purchase the High Resolution Digital Negatives receive detailed information inside their booklet on how to make the most out of their images. What a perfect package!”

Here’s to hoping that people are perking up when they get a look at whatever is being made in Pittsburgh, Chicago, Arlington, Milton, New York, Santa Monica, Brooklyn, Astoria, Orem, New Albany, Lombard, Perth, Hialeah, Saint Paul, Niceville, Toronto, Turlock, East Wallingford, Milwaukee, San Francisco, San Mateo, Winnepeg, Dobbsberry, Morton Grove, Seattle, Columbus, Bakersfield, Boulder, and St. Charles.

November 9, 2017 | Category: Band, Blog

Canon-aid

As you may or may not know, in combination with Coudal.com, our studio site, we send out a mailing via email about once a month. There’s always a contest or giveaway and some other foolishness in it. And there’s always an offer on Jewelboxing too.

A little while ago the offer was “buy a 100pack of Kings or a 150pack of Standardsand write us back saying that you saw the offer in the mailing and we’ll give you a $25 instant rebate and throw your name in a hat to win a Canon Pixma Printer free of charge.

Dozens of people took us up on it and Robin Hennig of Tarzana, California was randomly selected to win the printer. Congrats Robin, it’s on the way. Most consumer-grade ink-jets do a fine job with our system but none better than the Canon series. They’re not lightning-fast but the image quality and color fidelity is great and they handle the 12mil paper perfectly.

Make sure you’re on our Infrequent Mailings list simply by giving us your email address at the bottom/right of the JB home page. We won’t ever abuse the privilege.

November 9, 2017 | Category: Blog

A Nice Conversation With An Angry Bovine

We heard from Jewelboxing user Jay Ferracane this week when he sent us a message saying:

“I ordered some kings from you guys a while back and finally got a chance to use them. I’ve been sharing a lot of recent work with these very memorable pieces. Everyone asked, ‘Did you do all this from scratch?’ to which I replied, ‘Well, with a little help…(insert Jewelboxing plug here).’ Anyway I was able to get a very custom look with off the shelf templates and parts. Thanks!”

Well, we thought that was about as great an e-mail from a user we were ever going to get, so we wrote back to Jay right away and asked if he could send over some info on himself. Here was his response:

“I’m a creative director in Los Altos, California and Angry+Bovine is my portfolio site. Bovine, specializes in helping companies create brands that take complicated ideas and make them tangible, engaging and understood. It’s truly multi-media, as the work is reflective of environment, print, web and brand strategies. The Jewelboxing system allowed me to make a custom high impact piece that I can leave behind with every client. They love the fact that what gets shown in the portfolio is now left with them to troll through at their own speed.”

Here’s to hoping we have more conversations like this one with the people in Warsaw, Olive Branch, Chicago, Edison, Old Lyme, San Diego, Spotslyvania, Denver, Vancouver, New York, Morgan Hill, Burbank, Boston, Atlanta, San Francisco, Winston-Salem, Toronto, Skokie, Gresham, Elmhurst, Ithaca, and Rockville.

Case Study 8: Bigstar

It’s been a little while since our last Case Study feature. In the interim, we’ve had lots of samples come t

 

hrough our doors, and all of them were fantastic and many have been featured here on the site, but we’ve always felt that the Case Studies should be something extra special, getting to know companies or individuals who are using Jewelboxing in direct relation to their business on a regular basis. What’s more, we’d set some really high standards with our previous talks with groups like Impactist, Eyeball NYC, and WOXY. It was when we started talking to Alex Krawitz, an Executive Producer over at Bigstar, the absurdly talented New York-based motion graphics firm, that we knew we had the focus of our next feature. Alex was kind enough to lend us some of his time in between massive projects for major clients, and we were fortunate to get the scoop on the company, their process, and the industry in general:

1. Can you give us the general rundown on Bigstar?

Yeah — we are a small creative motion graphic design and production firm based out of NYC. We specialize in broadcast and commercial work and sometimes do industrial, experience design and music video work.

2. I’m always curious how firms like Bigstar get started. How do you go from day one to now doing promos for HBO and major national spots? Making spec work or shorts for film fests? Did everyone bring their clients over from freelance or other firms? Or did you assemble a team of people and then said to potential clients, “Here we are!”?

Our creative director, Josh Norton, had been a freelance animator and designer in NYC for several years before we started Bigstar. It was one of those things that took form over the past two years in a very gradual way. The company quite literally started out in Josh’s apartment and what we would do is take Josh’s freelance clients and bill them through the Bigstar entity and let all of his clients know that we had started a new company. It wasn’t before long that we grew out of Josh’s apartment and rented a small room at a larger edit facility. Eventually, through word of mouth, client referrals and working our asses off, we were able to establish a small but solid client list. One room at the edit facility turned into two. And in July of ’05, we moved into our new office space that allows us to take on much bigger and more high profile work.

3. Your new ’06 reel features the Daft Punk song “Robot Rock.” How do you wind up picking a music track that you think will work well with the new material you want to show off? Someone hears a song and says, “That’s it! That’s the track to edit a montage to!”? And, along those same lines, is there a go-to person at Bigstar who is the king of putting together the new reel?

That’s kind of a funny question because I think that we had about 14 tracks that we considered “final” for our latest reel before we went with Daft Punk. We would get right up to the point where we would think it was complete and then Josh would want to switch the song again. The latest reel took us a long time to prepare with the music selection, which work to show, packaging etc. I think that you are always your own toughest critic.

4. A lot of your projects have a terrific mix of film, 2D, and 3D in them. What’s your process like, from designing the backgrounds to filming actors to taking everything into the computer and bringing it all together?

In our work you do see a lot of mixing of elements and that has kind of become the bstar calling card. For our most recent project, we had elements coming from many different sources. We were in the studio shooting HD effects and live action. Those were being combined with CG and 2d animation, as well as textural scanning and photography that we took all over the city. All of these elements were then brought in and assembled by all of the animators and editors. The end result is a richer more finished aesthetic that gives the viewer a unique visual experience.

5. Any particular favorites Bigstar has put together? Or any really interesting methods you used to assemble a piece?

I think that our favorites change from day-to-day and project to project. We’re pretty into the “Road to Rucker Park” piece at the moment.

6. To help keep everyone around the studio sane and happy, a lot of firms, including we here at Jewelboxing, get involved in personal projects, making things just for the fun of it. Does that go on at Bigstar? Anything you’d like to share?

Unfortunately it is very hard for us to do work outside of our client jobs as they take almost all of our time. But we do, once in a while, get a chance to work on fun stuff. We have a music video that we will begin working on soon that should be really great.

7. Over the weekend, a friend and I got to talking about how there are these motion graphics staples that people not in the industry have become hyper-familiar with. Like the still photos cut out and made into 3D, which you see in almost every documentary anymore. Or flowers being unmasked, so it looks like they’re growing. Bigstar seems to be able to buck those trends and come up with ideas that are unique and far more organic. How do you manage to keep things fresh, which must be particularly difficult when you’re working with clients who are prone to say things like, “I saw the coolest thing last night — it was this still photo that was also kinda in 3D!”?

The motion design industry grows together. There are shared trends and techniques that create breakthroughs pushing us and every firm to a higher level of expression. However, once an idea or look reaches a saturated level exposure it is our job as a firm to have already seen the “trend” coming, by staying close to the industry and informed beyond the average individual. We are interested in being proactive. We strive to push the tools and talents around us and initiate a pure creative approach to each project using new techniques not reacting to popular trends.

8. Nearly every week at AdAge they’ve got a story about how tv spots are going the way of the Dodo and that the future of advertising is all in mobile content and the internet. Do you follow that thinking at all? Additionally, have you thought about, or been approached for, Bigstar handling such projects, ones that will never appear on anything larger than 320×240?

More and more our clients ask us to prep finals for both on air and web. I would say that that is becoming a pretty regular occurrence.

9. What did you use Jewelboxing for? And why did you decide to use the system?

We chose Jewelboxes for our reel packaging because of its professional quality look and the level of customization that we can achieve. When one of our clients or potential clients receive our reel we want them to feel like they have received something special and unique. We tried other options and Jewelboxing looked the best, by far.

10. What’s next for Bigstar? Any projects you can talk about?

We are just wrapping up our first channel launch package and were recently awarded a PSA for the Partnership for a Drug Free America that is going to be great. Stay tuned…

‘Jewelboxing Project Name’ Goes Here

Now that school’s back in session, it’s the season of sending out portfolios and reels for those coveted Fall internships. And we’re sure some of those packages arriving on desks across the country include a Jewelboxing case. But even if you did land the best gig in town and are now getting coffee for some of the most important people in the business, or completely forgot the whole thing and now have a knee-deep stack of cases you aren’t sure what to do with, there’s no such thing as too much promotion (or any if you’re of that later group), so if you’ve used Jewelboxing recently for any project you’ve put together, we’d love to see it. Drop us a line at crew at jewelboxing dot com. If your work is top notch and you convince us you’re really a student, we may just send you a batch more cases, on the house.

Intensely Painful, Heartbreaking, and Filled With Wonder

  • We’ve determined that Fall must be the season of the filmmaker. We’ve recently heard from a number of people using Jewelboxing to package their films, from the short, tiny budgeted two minutes pieces to the ones with craft service tables to rival some of the best restaurants in town. One filmmaker we heard from was the talented David Frank Gomes, about his very moving film, Awake. Here’s the story:Almost 10 years ago, my producing partner and accidentally stumbled across a suicide victim. We called the coroner to find out about him and we were told there would be a wake. We decided to go. We wanted to find about a young man who had left this world too early.From that experience came the idea for a film which became aWake. We finally completed it this year. Since we made the movie for 17 grand, it took a long time, and there were long periods where it looked like it might never be finished. The fascinating thing about indie filmmaking is that you are forced to learn to do everything yourself. The process is both intensely painful and heartbreaking, and satisfying and filled with wonder.

    After so many years, I wanted to send out the film in something that was special, not cheap and loveless. Cynicism is built into all low quality products, and my film deserved a little more love than I could find in Vancouver. One day I happened across a directors reel at a large commercial production house in Vancouver. You know the place, where buckets of money are thrown at everything, and it’s perfect, on time and gorgeous. They were using Jewelboxing and the moment I saw the DVD case, I thought “Wow, that is beautiful!” It was unlike any other case I had seen. I did a little research and ended up on the Jewelboxing site. It was more than we could really afford (I don’t consider them expensive, but the indie pocket book is small, and expenses are infinite), but we splurged anyway.

  • Now I must apologize. I am not a designer so I fall back on my one standard principle of design, which is low-fi, handmade with love. I am pleased to announce the system they have is practically foolproof, and very easy to work with. All the pain has been taken out of the process, and my few dealings with them have been fabulous. When a box arrived broken, it was replaced immediately. The service is as good as the product.In my estimation, anything can be made better and they have made the best cases I have ever seen, and provide a simple and user friendly system for making beautiful packaging yourself. I rest my case.Here’s hoping the labors of love are coming together as well as Awake in Chicago, Lowell, St. Paul, Seattle, New York, Mexico City, London, Loveland, Pacific Palisades, Outremont, Jacksonville, Brooklyn, Olympia, Frederick, Georgetown, Morganville, Hastings, Jersey City, Atlanta, Bonita Springs, Waukesha, Washington DC, Portland, New Albany, Sun Valley, Corona, and Huntsville.

Their Winter Post-Production Is Summer Post-Production To Us

We must have production on the brain right now, because suddenly we’ve found ourselves surrounded by it. In our other lives, over at Coudal Partners, we’re in the middle of a big campaign we’re shooting a bunch of cool spots for. It’s all we’ve been thinking about of late. When we came back to our Jewelboxing e-mails, we were happy to find that we need not leave that world of film and video for even a minute, as we’d gotten a great sample from of a case put together by Brendan Cook for Velocite Editorial. Here’s the whole scoop:

Velocite Editorial is a post production house based in Sydney, Australia and with a satellite office in China. We provide desktop editing services to broadcasters, production companies and ad agencies, and hate having boring packaging that doesn’t stand out. For our Senior Editor John Buck’s most recent round of meetings with the who’s who of advertising in Shanghai, he needed a DVD case that would stand out both in initial chats and then on the recipient’s shelf in the weeks ahead. So he asked Brendan Cook at the Sydney design studio pictureDRIFTto develop a package which extended on the look developed for his company identity.

Here’s to hoping the collaborative efforts are going as well in Denver, Dacula, Hollywood, Pasadena, Chicago, New York, Houston, Albany, Stockbridge, Tunkhannock, Winnipeg, Norfolk, Amsterdam, Alexandria, Philadelphia, St. Paul, Vestal, Lafayette, Toronto, Vancouver, Los Angeles, Orem, Wrightsville, and Bordeaux.

November 9, 2017 | Category: Blog

Heard from a few Jewelboxing customers

Over the years, we’ve heard from a few Jewelboxing customers who have put out cases to use after joining a mix disc group. It’s a club, of sorts, where once a month a member puts together not only a compelling collection of music they think the others will enjoy, but they also assemble packaging that helps to compliment the disc itself. It’s great hearing from people who are doing this because the whole project, from start to finish, is simply done out of a love of both music and design. And those are exactly the things Alison Garnett brought to the table when she put together her recent mix:

“I took part in my very first music exchange, organized by the artist/designer Lisa Solomon. Looking for an excuse to design a project that involved only myself and an unknowing music exchange partner, as a client, I went with a personal favourite colour combination, as well as a collection of icons that I felt represented both myself and my Canadian home. The jewel boxes were the finishing touch, turning a home made project into a professional looking package design. The title of the CD ‘Run Lala Run’ was both a play on the title of one of the best movie’s to ever come out of Europe, and my nickname ‘Lala’.”

Here’s to hoping the music exchanges are coming along as beautifully in Houston, Vallejo, Atlantic Beach, Plano, Sicklerville, Edmond, Grove City, Valencia, Saint Peter, Providence, Chilmark, Santa Barbara, Paderborn, Southfield, Duarte, Lansdowne, Toronto, Red Bank, Helsinki, Sao Paulo, Vancouver, Nashville, Decatur, Vestal, and Salt Lake City.

A Caped and Hooded Henley

We couldn’t really explain The Getty Address to you, even if we sat down and thought about it long and hard for hours on end. So, instead of a synopsis, we’ll just use a one word description: beautiful. The music is captivating, jumping from bombastic orchestral pieces complete with haunting choral arrangements to quiet stretches with barely more than Dave Longstreth’s falsetto. And with the film (which was created to follow along with the album in full), well, where to begin? It, too, jumps from place to place, moving from gorgeous bits of motion graphics into straight video, but so seamlessly that we genuinely had this thought, early on in the film, some five to ten seconds after such a transition: “Oh, wait, that’s video now. Crazy. How did they just do that?” But other than that, we’re at a loss to describe this remarkable piece of work. We feel really fortunate that James Sumner, who crafted all the film portion, dropped us a line about his using Jewelboxing to package the project, and all the more after he’d sent us a copy and we’d gotten to watch The Getty Address on the big screen. Here’s the rundown of the whole thing from James’ site:

“In 2003 Dave Longstreth, leader of critically acclaimed indie-orchestra Dirty Projectors, beganwork on The Getty Address, an ambitious glitch-opera about, Don Henley, leader of the soft-rock group, The Eagles.The album was released in Spring 2005 on the Western Vinyl label to critical success. Inspired by the terrifying scope of the record, self-taught filmmaker, James Sumner, began animating the story in its entirety under the name Vs. Anna Films. With a unique mix of hand-drawn, computer, and cut-out techniques, Sumner has both broadened and deepened the Henley Mythos. Green screen shoots transport Longstreth, as Don Henley, in a hallucinatory digital world. Kung-fu cranes, Neolithic kangaroos, and ancient Aztec gods guide Henley in his epic quest for Love.”

Here’s hoping that people are having equal success with love in the hallucinatory digital worlds of Baltimore, Seattle, Burbank, Pasadena, Orangevale, Boston, Chicago, Oklahoma City, New York, Cincinnati, Hillsboro, Tulsa, Naperville, Los Angeles, Savannah, Hickory, Rock Tavern, Nashville, North Richland Hills, Lilburn, Venice, Sinjhuang City, and London.

The Shiny Sheen of Chroma

Here at the studio, we’re all a bunch of audiophiles. Rabid record collectors, the lot of us, we also revel in anything new we find in used shops or in travels on the web, from strange sound collages to found audio to outtakes from classic albums. So when we got an e-mail from Danny Adler telling us about his latest project, an inventive album-slash-interactive-project called Chroma, we were all over it. And all the more exciting that he decided to package the whole thing using Jewelboxing. Here’s the story from Danny:

“Chroma, the album, was my thesis project for my Digital Media Design undergraduate degree. In addition to the music and packaging design, the disc contains an interactive Flash application called “Coactive” that will launch upon inserting the disc into a CD-ROM drive. In the game, the user is able to arrange and construct pieces from a song of mine as they wish within an animated and appealing interface. The music is various types of electronic music. I go from badass beats to epic melodic trance to ambient soundscapes to orchestral and back throughout the course of the album. After a few tweaks and edits, I’ve begun selling the album in the Jewelboxing casing, and my listeners love the packaging (and the music too, I think!)”

“My evaluating professors were extremely impressed with all of it, including the super-cool case! It was really great being able to print up 3 great-looking copies at 5 am the day the project was due! I managed to get a panoramic drawing across the front and back covers so when you open it up and look at the outside, you see the whole drawing. You’ll see it in the second image I am attaching. I didn’t use the included disc labels — instead I went for printable silver CDRs and used my inkjet to print right on the discs. Inkjet ink isn’t terribly permanent on that surface (just a little moisture will rub it right off), so I sprayed each disc with clear adhesive. This came with the bonus effect of making the discs super shiny. They look awesome.”

Danny was gracious enough to offer up the following sample tracks from the album:
Haven
Lofi Attitude
Me Semper Maneas (featuring vocals by Aurora)

Here’s to hoping the projects are as inventive and as super shiny in Calgary, Santa Monica, Covington, Seattle, Montreal, Chicago, Boston, Detroit, Edmonton, Vancouver, Studio City, Phoenix, Watertown, Newark, Market Rasen, Mount Juliet, Bend, Edmond, Atlanta, Grand Rapids, Austin, New York, Attleboro, Cadillac, Bell, Horsham, Greenwood, Hollywood, and Toronto.