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The making of... Season's Greetings 2008-2009

So you wanted to learn about our 2008 Christmas cards ? You're in the right place - we'll tell you all about the creation process and the sources we used for the pictures , fonts , software, ...

If you received a card in the mail, then you know already what it looks like. If you received an electronic link, you can see a copy of our mailing card at the very bottom of this page.

At the center of attention of our Christmas cards this year is Brussels, the city where we live since June 2008. Brussels is the capital of Belgium, and houses about one million people. The city goes all out for the Christmas period, having a large number of specials events - including a temporary ice skating ring, a huge Christmas market and special light effects for the famous Grand Place. We have tried to capture the spirit of Christmas in Brussels for our Season's Greetings cards 2008.

All about the pictures

All pictures we used are taken in Brussels and in 2008 - most of them just before Christmas. Take a look at the details and the picture credits below.

The Background Picture

lightbeam projection of the statue

The background picture is in fact a detail of the larger shot of the Brussels community hall ('stadhuis'). The lightbeam catches the little statue on top of the building, and projects its image on the low hanging clouds. The picture was taken by Wim Patry and can be found on his Flickr Photostream .

Brussels' Grand Place

Brussels' Grand Place

As soon as the sun sets down, a series of special Christmas light effects turn the Brussels' Grand Place into a magical place to be. It is impossible to catch the full beauty and magic on a still picture - you just have to be there.

The full sequence takes more than 30 minutes, and a number of pictures of this show can be found in Wim Patry's Flickr gallery from where this picture originates.

The Dexia Tower

The Dexia Tower

The Dexia Tower is one of the fancy buildings in downtown Brussels. In daytime, the building looks like any modern high rise full of offices, but at night the building is used as a full color display for numerous patterns. A number of pictures of the Dexia Building at night can be found in Wim Patry's Flickr gallery from where this picture originates.

The Atomium

The Atomium

The Atomium is one of the few landmarks in Brussels. It was build in 1958 for the World Exhibition, and is one of the few remaining items from this event. A few years back it was completely remodeled, inside and outside, and now it is again the shiny structure it once was. At night, there is a light pattern that highlights the structure.

More pictures of the Atomium can be found in Wim Patry's Flickr gallery from where this picture originates.

Winterpret - Plaisir D'Hiver

Ice Skating Ring at Winterpret

One of the special holiday events in Brussels is called Winterpret / Plaisirs D'Hiver. It consists of a large Christmas market, a temporary ice skating ring, an ice-bar, children events, and so much more. This picture was taken on a December evening and is part of my Flickr Photostream.

All about the clones

hilde small clone jurgen small clone

While making the preparations for this year's cards we discarded the idea of mailing everyone a do-it-yourself Christmas ornament. We toyed with the idea to send everyone a sheet of paper which could be turned into a three dimentional Christmas figure - with the proper arts and craft skills.

One of the main reasons to not further pursue this idea were the mailing logistics. How do you mail a single A4/letter sheet of cardstock without getting it all messed up before it arrives at the destination ? Not easy. However, in the mean time we had created our own 'clones'. And allthough we did not mail them to everyone, we still would like to invite you to download our clones, print them, and test your arts and craft skills by assembling them.

Want to try it ? Go to the clone download page and have fun !

All about the fonts

Curious about the font we used to create most of the text on our card ? It is a Truetype font called Angelina. It's a freely available font - for both Mac and PC - and you can download it here .

All about the software

All pictures were processed using Corel Photopaint software, and all fonts / vector graphics were made using CorelDraw. We used Corel X4 - the latest available version of the Coreldraw Suite of programs - one of the last non-Microsoft software packages.

The real card

Our 2008 Christmas cards are printed on cardstock paper (300g), with a full color front and a single color printed back (black) using the standard 145x105 format. Printing was done at Imagebuilding in Antwerp. Below is copy of the end result, front and back. Enjoy !



Note that the link listed on the card no longer exists - as this website has been remodelled and ported to Drupal. The new link is Season's Greetings 2008-2009.

Hilde & Jürgen