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Placemats with Arran images

I have been planning on getting placemats made with images of Arran on them for a good few months now. The original plan was to take photos and use a selection of the best ones, put them on place mats and sell them. I do have maybe three or four shots that would potentially make nice images for place mats, but my friend Alex-U is a far more accomplished photographer than I and just happens to have a great selection of Arran shots on flickr [Alex’s Arran set on flickr]

I spoke to Alex today about licensing a selection of his shots and he’s open to it. It will cost me money to do it and neither of us have any experience of this sort of thing, so he’s considering it just now and we’ll see if we can come to some sort of arrangement. His work is good and he ought to be paid what it’s worth. Only thing is that I suspect the true value will be more than I can afford, which is why I’m hoping we can come to an arrangement. It would be nice, of course, if I could use my own images, but having given it some thought, I tend to think that Alex’s shots would make the product more eye-catching and, ultimately, more saleable, and that’s the bottom line.

On the flip side, the pre-made Arran placemats I had last year from Strathmore Melamine sold and they were horrible. So I could in theory use my own images and they would still sell. Or, how about this: of the two possible manufacturers, I go with one for Alex’s shots and one for my own, using the higher-quality product (Strathmore Melamine) for Alex’s and make it a premium product, and my own from Doricmor to be of less quality and more a more affordable alternative?

I’ll call both parties tomorrow to get costs, turnover time and minimum order numbers and see where we go from there.