“Moonlit Dreams” and Product Inspirations

One basic approach to selling on Zazzle, is simply to put a drawing or other work on as many products as possible. That way, the effort of producing a design is maximized in terms of the number of items added to one’s store, and, hence, to the Zazzle market place at large. Not everyone does this (for instance, some Zazzlers specialize in one product type only), but many do, including, usually, myself. And when a given design truly works fine on many different product types, it is not simply about adding more items at once; it is about offering people what one hopes are all good and worthy products.

Sometimes though, certain products in particular inspire a design, leading to “product inspired” designing in contrast to the “design first” way. This can be just one product in particular, and in fact, I have a “Few of a Kinds” category collection in my store for this very reason (well, more precisely, because I want to occasionally design for very specific items). Other times, this can rather be a subset of products, because the underlying inspiration, perhaps, is an intended use or purpose, one for which only certain products apply.

Moonlit Dreams, colored pencil drawing by Darren Olsen at The Draw

“Moonlit Dreams”
© 2015 Darren Olsen

It was for such a “purpose / product inspiration” that I drew, for instance, “Moonlit Dreams”. I was thinking of something to go on a nightlight in particular, and as nightlights are often useful to kids and babies, I decided on something suitable for a nursery. From there though, with a design so “baby” in nature, I soon saw how nice “Moonlit Dreams” could be on certain other products suited to nurseries, or, even, to some suitable for baby showers as well.

Of course, the inspiration behind “Moonlit Dreams” went much deeper than simply “something to go on a nightlight”, “something suitable for a nursery”. As I contemplated a nightlight, I began to think of a parent’s desire for their baby / toddler to sleep soundly for periods of time, giving the parent a much-needed and deserved “break”. So too though, I thought of a parent’s love and concern for the well-being of their child, the same love and concern ensuring that they are always watching out for and over their baby. With genuine caring, there is practically something magical in such imaginings, and that is not even considering that many people believe in a greater power, one to, among other things, watch over them and their children, particularly as they sleep. In short, I just felt there is a lot of love implicit in one’s baby sleeping, and a sort of beauty and wonder even that I wanted to try and capture.

Moonlit Dreams Baby Nursery Nightlight, product at The Draw on Zazzle

Moonlit Dreams Baby Nursery Nightlight
© 2015 Darren Olsen

Hence came “Moonlit Dreams”. The elements of the drawing are, of course, plain to see, for it is not particularly complicated or symbolic. From the thought of “watching over”, a bright, smiling crescent moon came to me, although to draw it so well, I did create and print out a digital version of the moon, to trace. (Meanwhile, the pencil called “Lemon Yellow” from my set, as usual, worked perfectly to give that “shining” look, as much as possible.)

From there, although perhaps restricted by the presence of the moon, the setting of a starry night seemed to fit, complete with stars in baby blue and baby pink. (I had earlier thought of perhaps doing two versions of the drawing, one with blue stars, one with pink, yet this seemed … unneeded.) The soaring gold stars were a finishing touch, complete with the one apparently having broken up upon hitting the land below. (A tad bit violent, perhaps? I do not particularly think so. The “crash” allowed me to add a little more color and detail, and, after all, “stars” harmlessly hitting the Earth, when indeed harmless, are nothing bad.) To finish up, I simply had to fill in the “night”, which I did only lightly, partly because as a nightlight, I thought a lighter background was warranted.

Sleep, sleep, sleep tonight,
with dreams aplenty,
this moonlit night.

Moonlit Dreams Baby Nursery Tile, product at The Draw on Zazzle

Moonlit Dreams Baby Nursery Tile
© 2015 Darren Olsen

Once up on Zazzle though, there was actually one last thing I had to add. You may have noticed that the drawing itself leaves an “open” space to the right of the moon, while the nightlight and other products have text there. I felt that a wish for good and dreamy sleep–a short little verse–would really add to the nightlight, and even more so if it could be personalized with a given baby’s name. Rather than draw so much text though, I opted to use Zazzle’s design interface instead, which makes adding text in a wide variety of fonts quite easy, not to mention personalized text and such. (In fact, while Zazzle makes it easy to customize nearly any product, it makes it even easier to personalize select images or text. A seller simply designates such things as “template objects”, and then the product page lets customers change them without even activating the Customize It! design interface. Nice.)

Thinking of you,
with dreams anew,
we smile this
moonlit night …
And, too
for the bundle, new,
your bundle of joy,
and light.

Moonlit Dreams Baby Shower Paper Plate, product at The Draw on Zazzle

Moonlit Dreams Paper Plate
© 2015 Darren Olsen

I earlier mentioned seeing how nice “Moonlit Dreams” could be on products for baby showers as well, and indeed, I soon went ahead and placed it on such items as paper napkins, invitations, and postage stamps, once the majority of the nursery items were complete. Of course, I had to replace the “sleep” verse with various others more suited to a shower (for the invitation, event information even!), but otherwise, the shower items were a nice inspiration from the “original” one. (Although, as people have not always settled on a name by shower time, customers may often just have to remove or else change / be creative with the name and note on a given product.) I even ended up adding a “new baby” card, complete with the longest and perhaps most poetic verse of any of the items. And, while the collection is essentially complete, as I add new product types to my store as time goes by, it is always possible that yet more “Moonlit Dreams” items will appear as well.

Moonlit Dreams Baby Shower Invitations, product at The Draw on Zazzle

Moonlit Dreams Baby Shower Invitations
© 2015 Darren Olsen

Moonlit Dreams New Baby Card, product at The Draw on Zazzle

Moonlit Dreams New Baby Card
© 2015 Darren Olsen

While the “Moonlit Dreams” products are already too numerous then for the “Few-of-a-Kinds” category, I do keep them gathered in what Zazzle calls a “collection”, visible right on my store’s homepage. If you have a baby yourself or know someone who does, by all means, check them out in the Moonlit Dreams Nursery and Shower Collection today.

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