Could you be a dick?

I’m in the middle of preparing materials for a new book, “Hardboiled Web Design”. To demonstrate CSS3 selectors, transforms and transitions I’m putting together a page in the demonstration site, “It’s Hardboiled”. That’s where you come in.

Web designers are cool, but private detectives are cooler. No argument, but why can’t you be both?

Design a business card for your very own detective agency? Then upload it to the Hardboiled Card Flickr Group and you could see it printed in “Hardboiled Web Design”.

Although this is not strictly a competition, I will send the person whose card I like the most one of my For A Beautiful Web DVDs and eight other people will receive an S&N logo pin1.

A few pointers

  • Standard business card size is 85mm x 55mm.
  • Be as creative, funny or just downright hardboiled as you like.
  • Think of a great detective agency name. Mine might be “Stiffs and Nonsense”.
  • Add a snappy tagline to help you get business.
  • Include your name and anything else you think will help you find work as a detective2.


  1. Upload your card design to the Hardboiled Card Flickr Group.
  2. Select an Attribution Creative Commons license.
  3. I will post the nine cards that I like the most in a week.

Don’t be a mug. Be a dick.

private dick (plural private dicks)
(informal) private investigator, private detective (Source)

The small print

1. This is not spec work, if you have time and want to participate, fantastic. Do it because you want to, not because I’m asking. Nor is it a competition, not in any legal sense. My gun is quick and my decision is final. DVDs and pins are not prizes, instead think of them as gifts, from me to a lucky few. I will post the nine cards that I like the most in a week.

2. Your card may wind up printed in “Hardboiled Web Design”, associated and derivative materials. If you include genuine contact or address information, neither, I, Stuff and Nonsense Ltd. or the publisher will accept responsibility for anything that might happen if you do. Unless that is, you want people looking to hire you to track down their missing partner.

3. By uploading your detective business card to the Hardboiled Card Flickr Group, you implicitly grant me a non-exclusive license to reproduce it in the “Hardboiled Web Design” book, associated and derivative materials including articles and blog posts, video tutorials, workshop slides and materials or conference talks. Your name will credited each and every time your design is used.


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