My daughter’s company, Critter Corner Cards, released its newest annual calendar this week, Furry Friends. The calendar includes thirteen hand-drawn images of our favorite domestic pets in colorful prism pastels.
Unlike something you find at a discount store, where a dozen photographs have been printed a million times, collated with dates of the month, and then sold for almost nothing because there are so many of them, these hand-drawn calendars represent weeks of effort.
The images in the Pets calendar requires gathering pictures of dog, cats, puppies, and kittens, and adding character with colored pencil and shading technique. Each individual finished 11 x 17 composition can take a week, sometimes two, to finish.
Like anyone who studies the arts, Rachel makes daily practice a prerequisite. Ask any dancer, painter, or writer and they will tell you the same. Perfection is an ongoing process. You never quite “arrive” because you daily add to your skill.
The end product begins at the computer, researching the animal, finding habitats, and selecting the right photo or set of photos to group together.
Once selected, Rachel travels to the studio of her long time mentor and friend, Meredith, with whom she has been drawing for more than a decade. Together they each compose a picture from the images Rachel has chosen and compare techniques as they work toward a finished product. The ninety minute consultation sets the project in motion.
From there the picture is returned to Rachel’s desk where she fine-tunes her images, decides what background elements to add, and then proceeds to add the color. Her desk is never without a project in progress.
This year’s calendar represents thirteen weeks of planning, drawing, and compiling to bring her customers a one-of-a-kind calendar. Her customers are my heroes because they are helping support a young woman with a disability follow her passion and make her imprint on the world.
In addition to her calendar, Rachel is offering gift boxes of 5 x 7 cards imprinted with the bird images from the 2017 On Wings of Eagles calendar. Each boxed set contains ten cards and envelopes and sells for $15.00.
See her offerings at www.crittercornercards.com.