CCU Couple Start Business of Self-Drawn Cards Marching Towards Creating Physical Storefront

Published on Jul 09 2014

Often we hear stories of people starting their own businesses, but have you heard of campus couples working together to start one? A couple in CCU, Tsai Yao Yu and Chen Hui Zhen established "Zacient Handmade Workshop," where one is in charge of customizing cute cards, whereas the other focuses on advertising and marketing. Not only are they preparing for their dream to have a physical storefront, their relationship has also been taken to a higher level.
Due to both of their family backgrounds, the couple is quite familiar to art. Tsai Yao Yu is currently a junior majoring in Labor Relations, and his father, Tsai Han Rong, is a calligraphy artist. He has cultivated the sensitivity to art under the influence of it at a young age. Tsai said, "Looking at her drawing so attentively one day, a thought struck my mind that maybe we could try starting a business." Chen Hui Zhen, a sophomore majoring in Economics also mentioned that her father's leisure activity was to draw according to his liking, and further more, her mother has learnt sketching. "I had started holding my drawing pen to draw on the walls when I was in kindergarten. I had been beaten for doing so," Chen Hui Zhen laughed.
Earning the support of their parents, Tsai Yao Yu and Chen Hui Zhen had more motivation to start the business. At present, the workshop is still at the first stage of starting,as Tsai Yao Yu takes care of advertising and marketing. Chen Hui Zhen focuses on the design of the illustration, also to receive orders from social networks and to sell the customized cards. Her works and logo are also exhibited regularly. Apart from getting orders online, the workshop also put up stalls during the activities on campus to let people see their products in reality. In addition, they collaborated with coffee shops in Chiayi and Minhsiung to sell their self-drawn cards in the creative cultural areas in the shops.
Although the workshop has just been established, many people appreciates Chen Hui Zhen's style of drawing. Not only have people asked them to design the wall consisting of four meters long and five meters in height in the shop, but also a couple has took the initiative to contact the workshop, wanting them to design their engagement cards. They have been deeply attracted by their adorable drawing style and interesting quotes. Tsai Yao Yu said happily, "This is a very special experience and we are very much encouraged!"
Different from illustrators "Cherng's" and "Wan Wan," Chen Hui Zhen did not have stable characters for her cards, and her themes come form everyday incidents, such as The Sunflower Student Movement, Mother's Day, the graduation season, etc. The cute characters, interesting quotes together with drawings that match current events have struck a chord with the public. Other than that, they would customize the cards according to their customers' needs. In order to maintain the quality of every card, they have supervised the process from drafting to printing by themselves, hoping that the people who received their cards could feel their warm intentions.
The couple who started the business together inevitably has different opinions sometimes. "Usually nine out of ten creative ideas would be accepted, but the situation of only one out of ten illustration ideas would be accepted has made me lose some confidence!" Tsai Yao Yu said, laughing. However, it is this common goal that has brought the couple closer to each other by having more to talk about, and also knowing more about each other.
Tsai Yao Yu and Chen Hui Zhen have set the workshop as a goal for their college phase. They have planned to create one-and-only cards for others to gain experiences as well as to build up their reputation. In the future, they hope to create their own brand and furthermore to fulfill their dream of having a physical storefront.