Boat cards are like business cards for cruisers. In this lifestyle you meet people and become friends so quickly that it is very handy to have these little gems. And with my less than perfect memory (I am notoriously bad at remembering names) I've found that boat cards can be a great aid to my lacking gray matter. Unfortunately I have not had ones to hand out.
I had been procrastinating about creating cards because one of the items I wanted to include on the cards was a picture of us, the crew of s/v Rover including our furry members, sitting together on the transom or some other appropriate sort of scene. The reason for the picture is that I've found it to be one of the most beneficial features of some of the boat cards I've received...so I can match cards to faces (I can generally recognize a face as someone that I'm supposed to know...even if I can't remember their name). So, I definitely wanted to include this feature for others like me that can't always remember names. But as of yet, the whole crew has not been on the boat together.
I was also trying to figure out if I wanted to have cards printed or just print them myself with a color inkjet printer. I've been finding some need for a printer on-board (as I've had to print out forms for things like dinghy registration or letters when my credit card information was compromised), so it seemed to make sense to just print them as we need them and they would remain relatively up to date that way. Unfortunately, having owned an inkjet printer before, I also know how cantankerous they can be if not used regularly (and I don't see me using the printer on a monthly, much less weekly, basis). Looking into having business cards printed, I also found that I could have 250~500 cards done for about the same cost as a single inkjet cartridge set for most printers. So, it seems to me that having them done is a better option for us.
So, fast forward to my current trip back to Denver. As we wrap up our land-based life here in Colorado, one of the things we would like to do is have a Bon voyage party of sorts before we leave. I came to the realization that it would be handy to have some boat cards for that party so I could give people our contact information since we would soon be without some of our classic means of contact (our home address, home phone). Getting this task done now would also alleviate the need to deal with it once we got back to the boat. We also thought about how small the portrait image would be on a business card and decided that a more close up picture or pictures would be better than trying to have one that was more "sailing oriented". In the end, there doesn't seem to be a good reason to wait any longer.
This weekend, as I continue to get over my "Denver sinus infection", I decided to design our boat cards. Typically, people have the name of their boat, maybe a picture of their boat or themselves, the name of the crew, email addresses and phone numbers, possibly a mailing address or a blog link. In our case, we almost have two different personas that need to be represented on the card. There is the classic information about boat and crew that is on most cards. In our case there is also the blog that existed well before we had the boat. Unlike most sailing blogs, it doesn't bear the name of the boat and goes beyond just our time on the boat so I felt it deserved a bit of a showcase on the card. In the end, we decided that a two sided card was in order where the blog and email contact was on one side, the boat and crew information was on the other. Here is the result of our design efforts:
I think the design turned out fairly well. So, what do you think? Hopefully the printed cards will look good. Now...waitress, where's that drink.