Tuesday, April 26, 2022

How Much Clip Art is Too Much?

Clip art is fun, easy to use and abundant these days! But how do you know when to stop? How do you determine which articles warrant a graphic and which articles would be best left to stand on their own? 
Although there are no steadfast rules in regards to clip art and page layout, there are a few tips that can be followed to ensure your layout is not too graphic heavy. 

First, prioritize. Where is it that you want your reader's attention drawn first? Readers are naturally drawn to large, strategically placed graphics. Use fewer, larger graphics to draw attention. 

Next, keep it consistent. If using multiple graphics on one page, line them up on the same margin, or keep them in the same style, ie. cartoon, artistic or contemporary. 

Another way to minimize the clutter is to skip the graphic altogether. Keep in mind that borders, shading, drop caps and bullet points are all competing for attention alongside your graphics. Review your document layout and scale back those elements that compete for your reader's attention. Too much visual stimulation just means that your message gets lost in the clutter. Use fonts and font attributes to draw attention when the graphics count is climbing. 


The first sample has many, smaller graphics all competing for the attention of your reader. The second sample, with one oversized image, draws focus. As a bulletin editor, understanding the power of graphic placement is another important tool in your design toolbox! 




Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Ouch!



























Browsing through bulletins from around the country, one will not go long without encountering images contorted like the ones above. For sure, fitting everything into your weekly bulletin can sometimes seem like pouring ten pounds of flour into a five-pound sack. And at times it can be really tricky to fit an image into the space available to you. But there are alternatives to stretching and squishing images until they are unrecognizable. Here are a few tips to help you avoid such pain.

  • Not every image has to go all the way across the top of a column or page. You can take a square image, place it at the top on just one side (usually the left side) of a column, and wrap your text around it. 
  • If you have to shrink the image, do so while maintaining the relative horizontal and vertical proportions. Usually you can do this by grabbing a corner and dragging. And if there is text in the image, don't make it so small that it can't be read.
  • Enlarging an image is seldom a good idea. While some will still look OK, many images start to look pixelated as you make them larger.
  • Look for a different image to fill the space you need. The SRC has images in many different shapes and sizes to help you fit your available space.
  • If you find that you repeatedly end up trying to re-shape images to fit your space, LET US KNOW. We will be happy to work with you on creating images to fit wherever you need them. But we can't do so if we don't know what you need. 
Taking a little care to present the images available to you in the way they were intended will help to make your bulletin attractive as well as informative.

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Introducing Micro-clips






This year we have added a new feature to the resources available on the J. S. Paluch Subscriber Resource Center: Micro-clips. These are postage-stamp-size photographic images that can be used as headers or accent pieces for any of a number of different kinds of bulletin announcements. 



One distinguishing feature is that almost none of them have any text on them, which makes them even more versatile. You’ll find one or two of them listed toward the bottom of the first page on any given Sunday. The filename given to each image also indicates its content. There are names like USFlag3 or ChaliceHost.



Some of the Micro-clips are seasonal, but most are not. So a better way to see all the Micro-clips that are available is to launch a keyword search. On the main Bulletin Resources page of the SRC, click on All Resources, or if you are already on a resource page, click on the All tab. Then in the box under Type Keywords, type in “Micro clip” (without the quotes), hit Enter, and all the Micro-clips will appear in your browser. Scroll through them to see what’s available and start adding these versatile accents to your bulletin today!




PS: We are in the planning stages for next year’s resources, so if there is an image that you’d like to see included in the next round of Micro-clips, be sure to let us know.

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

I Remember When: Posting Your Bulletin Online




I frequently hear myself telling my fifteen year old daughter that "I remember when. . . . " For example, I remember when candy really did cost a penny. And I remember when we waited all week for our favorite television show instead of binge-watching an entire season in one afternoon. 

Well, I also remember when bulletins were only printed and handed out at Mass on Sunday. Today's technology allows us to put the bulletin right into the parishioners hands via their smartphones, laptops, and tablets with just a click of a button. 

Parishioners and visitors can access the current issue as well as past bulletins with ease. JS Paluch makes it easy to download your complete bulletin via our website, www.jspupload.com, and then post it to your parish website for all to find and read. 



1. Use the drop-down menu from Download and select Download Bulletin
2. Key in your six-digit bulletin number
3. The most current issue of the bulletin will be displayed. (Or click Previous Bulletins to see older issues of the bulletin.)  



4. Open the bulletin that you want to download and on the upper right corner, click the download button to save the file onto your computer. You can now share this complete file, ads included, on your parish website or via email. 


And now I remember when JS Paluch made it simple and quick to stay connected! 

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Working Ahead for the Holidays

 


This is the time of year when many bulletin editors try to work ahead in order to stay on top of the holiday rush. It might therefore be helpful for you to know when to expect your favorite items to appear on the Subscriber Resource Center (SRC).

All of the features have been posted for the month of December. The January dated covers, thematic materials, and formatted articles will be posted to the SRC no later than November 12. All the other January items have already been posted.

Also, for your convenience, here are the dates for the upcoming early deadlines for the rest of 2021:

Deadline                                          Issue Date

Friday, November 19                      November 28 issue is due
Friday, December 10                      December 19 issue is due
Thursday, December 16                 December 26 issue is due
Thursday, December 23                 January 2, 2022 issue is due

We wish you all the best for the coming Advent and Christmas seasons!

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Our Parish Life in Pictures

Including images of parish activities and events is a wonderful way to showcase your vibrant parish life. Pictures of sacramental life including baptisms, weddings, First Communions and Confirmations allow the parish to celebrate as a whole. Photos of gatherings like parish picnics, youth activities, and campus clean-up days display fellowship at work. Being sure these images will work in your document is an important step in sharing these moments. 




Also consider resolution. Digital pictures are made up of tiny squares called pixels. One million pixels is equal to one megapixel (MP). If you zoom in close enough to any photo you can see the individual pixels that create that image. Up close, photos look more like a Rubik’s cube than your original photo. It is these tiny squares, however that retain the clarity and detail of your image.

The more pixels, the greater the resolution of the image. The higher the resolution, the clearer and more detailed your photo. Keep in mind that most digital cameras have settings that allow you to change the resolution, so you can control the quality of the photos as you take them.  Photos intended to be used for your weekly bulletin are sufficient if set at a 4X6 size or 540x360 pixels.






If you are working with high quality digital images that are very large, the best option is to resize and save the photos into a TIF format and then re-insert into your bulletin. Here’s how:

1. Insert the photo into your bulletin

2. Resize to appropriate size and shape

3. Right-click the photo, click “Save As Picture”

4. Verify that you are saving in the “My Pictures” folder (default directory for pictures)

5. Name your picture in the File Name dialog box

6. Click the down arrow on the Save As Type dialog box and change to Tag Image Format (*.tif)

7. Save and then Right-click on the photo again and click Change Picture > From File.

8. Double-click on the new TIF file to replace the original photo.

 

These few steps will help decrease the picture size and decrease your bulletin file size. Once you are ready to transmit for printing, you’ll definitely notice the difference.

Our best advice is to consult your camera’s owner’s manual to determine the best settings for your use.

Ultimately, how many megapixels and what resolution settings are best, depend upon how you intend to use the photos. Consult your camera’s owner’s manual for what settings best met your needs.

 

 

 

 


Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Extend Your Bulletin's Reach

 



You work hard every week on your parish bulletin, but these days it’s hard to know whether it reaches all the people who should be reading it. As the pandemic drags on, many parishioners are still staying away from Sunday Mass. How can you get a bulletin in their hands? You could mail them, but that takes time and costs money. It’s far simpler (and free!) to send your Sunday bulletins to their email address. If you haven’t already done so, here are the easy steps you can follow to take advantage of J.S. Paluch’s free eBulletin service.

1. Create an electronic list of the email addresses of your parishioners. You may already have such a list, so you can import it into an Excel file or CSV or Text file with the information on each line separated by tabs. Your file might look something like this (Excel file):

 


Or this (Text file):


(Note that there is a tab after each entry on a line, even if the entries don’t appear to line up.)

The only necessary information is the email address; the names are optional.


2. Contact Igor Ratajczyk at ratajczyki@jspaluch.com or 847-558-2726 to get set up. You will be sending the email list to him.

That’s all you have to do!

If you don’t have an email list, you can direct your parishioners to sign up at either of these two links: https://ebulletin.jspaluch.com or https://www.jspaluch.com/Subscribe

Of course, you can also publish your bulletin to your parish’s own web page or social media platform. But when you do, please be sure to show your appreciation for the support of your advertisers by using the PDF for your bulletin that includes the ads.


Bonus!

When you submit your email list to J. S. Paluch, if it has more than 100 names on it, your parish will receive a $50.00 Visa gift card.

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Why does that image look so fuzzy?


One of the continuing frustrations of creating printed bulletins is finding the perfect image online, only to see it come out fuzzy when you hold your bulletin in your hand on Sunday. Why does this happen?

The short answer is that computer displays and printed pages have different requirements for images to look sharp. A typical computer screen has a resolution of only 72 pixels per inch, or PPI. That means that any image with a resolution of 72 DPI (dots per inch) or greater will look nice and sharp on your screen. By contrast, if you want a sharp image on the printed page, the minimum resolution should be 300 DPI. Anything much less will look fuzzy or pixellated. So an image that looks great on your screen may or may not look good in your bulletin, depending on its DPI.

So how can you tell if an image that you are working with has a high enough DPI? There are programs available to identify the resolution of an image; Preview comes with every Mac. Unfortunately, Windows doesn’t have a similar program built in. However, you can use the Graphics Manager feature in Publisher to find out an image’s resolution: just select the image after you’ve placed it in your document, click on the View tab in the Ribbon, and check the box labeled Graphics Manager. The Graphics Manager will open in a sidebar on the right side of your screen, where you can move your cursor over the name of the selected image and click on the little triangle that appears. In the box that then opens, select Details, and one of the items reported will be the Effective Resolution. As long as it’s anywhere near 300 DPI or higher, your image should look fine on the printed page. If not, you should seek a different image or find a version of that image with higher resolution.

Another quick check is to place the image, then print the page on your printer. If it looks sharp there, chances are that it will look right in your printed bulletin.

Fortunately for you, we work hard at J. S. Paluch to make sure that every image that we post to the Subscriber Resource Center (SRC) has the appropriate resolution for printing. As long as you download the image properly, you can be sure that our images will look good in your printed bulletin. When you use images from other sources, you just have to be a little more careful.

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Thank You! ¡Gracias! Grazie!




The wonderful businesses that show their support by advertising in your weekly bulletin deserve special recognition and thanks. Advertisers know that their ad is a good investment for them when they know that your parishioners are patronizing their business because of it. Please consider including a notice like this one in your bulletin on a regular basis, perhaps monthly.


Dear Friends,

Today I would like to take a moment to recognize some important partners of (name of parish). Sometimes we take our Sunday bulletin for granted, but on the back page are ads from the companies that support us year-round. Please take some time today to look over our bulletin ads and when you patronize those businesses or services, say thank you from (name of parish). No one ever tires of hearing thank you. Our bulletin advertisers will appreciate it. They are part of our success at (name of parish).

(Name of Pastor)


Including graphics or headings such as “Advertiser of the Week” or “Special thanks to our advertisers for making this bulletin possible” are also great ways to remind parishioners of the contribution that advertisers make. A little thankfulness really does go a long way!

Advertiser artwork can be located on the Subscriber Resource Center at www.jspaluch.com. Use Keyword search: thank you.




Friday, June 25, 2021

Three Common Questions

 


When there are as many people who use our bulletin resources on the J. S. Paluch Subscriber Resource Center (SRC) as we have, there are bound to be questions that come up fairly regularly. Here are three of the most common questions we receive, along with our answers. Remember, if you have a question about the resources on the SRC, you can always feel free to ask us, and we’ll be sure to answer you quickly and thoroughly.

Q: Can we use the images and other resources that I find on the SRC in our parish newsletter (or other publication, or parish web site)?

A: Yes, you can use anything that your find on the SRC for any parish publication, including your web site, as long as you don’t charge anything for it, and as long as you include the copyright/credit line with the image or article in your publication.

Q: I’m working ahead, and I don’t see any photo covers for X date. Can you help me?

A: This kind of question often arises around the holidays when bulletin editors are trying to get ahead by more than a month. In some cases, it comes up because bulletin editors are accustomed to finding the covers they need under the Photo Covers tab. While this is a quick and handy way to get to the covers you want, by design it is limited to covers for only the next four weeks, so that it doesn’t get too unwieldy. If you need a cover for more than four weeks away, chances are that you can find it if you go to the All Resources tab select a date under the Choose a Sunday drop-down. You might also bear in mind that most of our resources are available for the whole year, but some, like the dated photo covers, are posted only six to eight weeks in advance.

Q: Do you have an image or article for this occasion, or saint, or topic?

A: Sometimes you can do a very thorough search and just not come up with the thing you are looking for. Maybe it’s buried under an obscure key word or maybe we just don’t have it. When that happens, please contact your trainer and we will either help you find it (then update our key words to make the item easier to find) or work to get that item posted to the SRC as fast as possible. Much as we pride ourselves on our vast collection of resources, sometimes we just don’t have the thing that you are looking for, so we will do our best to provide it for you as soon as you ask. And then it will be there for others to use as well.

Never hesitate to ask us a question. If we don't have the answer right away, we will find it for you. Your questions help us to grow and improve. Some of the best resources and features that we have are there because somebody asked for them.

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

creative creations in black and white

 

Click the link below to watch a step-by-step tutorial on creating these design elements


https://www.jspaluch.com/content/creative_creations_blog.pdf

https://www.jspaluch.com/content/creative_creations_2021-06-09.mp4