Vista Print Calendars - Not So Hot

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by dcstep, Dec 26, 2017.

  1. I produce a calendar annually, that I give away, mainly to park rangers at the nature preserve that I frequent for many of my wildlife shots. I used to use My Publisher, but they got acquired a few months back, then the new parent took over calendars and raised the price 400%, so I've been looking for a basic wall calendar for under #10 per copy.

    I tried Costco last year and was reasonably pleased, but that required an expensive membership and I found myself not using Costco enough to justify the membership. Vista Print suckered me in, but there product is lacking on several levels.
    • First, their building tool is not true WYSIWYG. I cropped my images to not cut off legs, antlers or wings. The looked good in the previews, but the finished product arrived today with totally different crops.
    • Second, the tool allows for almost no modification. Fonts are all locked at one size and you can't add any custom flourish whatsoever.
    • Finally, the colors are off. Not horribly, but certainly not what you'd want on a professional product.

    Vista Print calendars are for moms using smartphone images to make a calendar, not for anything close to a real, professional calendar.
     
  2. I have always used VistaPrint for publicity materials from my shop, and they have been spot-on, however, my computer screen is calibrated and I follow their recommendations for slop on cropping. They gang-print their jobs, and the templates I use have always had an allowance around the edge within which the cropping will float when they cut the pieces that you need to know to work with, but that's all in the directions. They never have gone outside of their specs on my work.

    I have never used their calendar template, though.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2017
  3. James G. Dainis

    James G. Dainis Moderator

    I use Shutterfly for my calendars. They are a bit more expensive than Vistaprint though. The calendar photo image is ~ 8x10 inches so I crop my images to 1600 x 2000 pixels and have no trouble with Shutterfly doing any other cropping.
     
  4. My monitor is calibrated also. The Preview in their calendar building app doesn't show that they will they actually print. Their colors are inconsistent from page to page and they don't allow any kind of customization.

    Shutterfly is the sorry company that bought MyPublisher, moved them from RGB to sRGB without telling anyone and raised prices 300% for calendars. They pay their CEO's bonus based on revenue $, really.

    I guess I'll need to renew my Costco membership next calendar season.
     
  5. I am really surprised that no one has drawn up a calendar template in Autocad. The image can be adjusted up and down to fit the required size. The fonts and the colors can be changed as well. I am referring to a single page year calendar which would share the space with a single image. If I can find the time I am going to try one.
     

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