Shoppers return time and again to Minted’s global online community of independent artists and designers because they know they can count on unique, statement-making products of the highest quality there. Concurrently, the visual imagery on Minted.com must do justice to the designs into which the creators have poured their hearts and souls. For Minted’s VP of Engineering David Lien, “Because we are a premium brand, we need to ensure that every single one of our product images matches the selected configuration exactly. For example, if you pick an 18×24 art print on blue canvas, we will show that exact combination on the hero images in the PDF.”
David first shared his thoughts at our ImageCon coverence last October and this case study is an abbreviated version of Minted’s success using Cloudinary.
Over time, Faithful renderings of the creations of the illustrators, textile designers, painters, packaging designers, marketers, and stay-at-home moms, all of whom are core contributors of the Minted world, was getting harder and harder. Legacy technology wasn’t cutting it any more—and it was time for Cloudinary to step in.
According to David, Cloudinary helps Minted scale its image-generation process and deliver stunning visual-content online in three ways:
Cleaning up the image-application “zoo”: Minted’s production team was wrestling with a complex mix of old and new tools and scripts—all strung together with different streaming technologies and queuing systems—which made it increasingly difficult to maintain and which took up significant engineering resources.
Enabling slicker photo setup: The critical first stage of capturing a design that will later become a print or the artwork on a stylish tote bag, for example, is a photoshoot in Minted’s studios. After the shoot, photographs are uploaded directly to Cloudinary, rendering ongoing edits, sizing, and deployment to web and mobile much easier.
Simplifying image routing and management: All the matting and mounting options Minted offers users are done on Cloudinary, as well as what can be a thorny process of generating canvas close-ups with 2D and 3D mesh transforms.
The case study walks you through how David and his team worked with Cloudinary to tackle their most daunting tasks of handling art. As an indication of the heavy lifting Cloudinary must do here, 59.8 million images now support 4,000 product SKUs in this core part of the Minted offering.
We’ll happily take on the next challenge from David: the even more intricate job of getting stationery images right, like capturing the “shine” that users enjoy seeing in a potential purchase. “We would love to solve this technical challenge with Cloudinary in the future,” he says. “There’s a lot more room to grow here.”
Check out David’s full ImageCon session here.