Featured Artwork: Calendar Designs, Anyone?

Desk and journal calendars for 2014, "In the Kitchen with Cookie" and "Compositions in Black and Green"
Desk and journal calendars for 2014, “In the Kitchen with Cookie” and “Compositions in Black and Green”

I’m actually looking for input from you!

People ask me all the time if I have a calendar, or if I’ll be publishing one. I’m definitely considering one this year and have several ideas. I’d like to hear what you’d like too, and I’ll match up what seems the most popular.

I’ve held off for a few years because of the time and costs of a calendar. I don’t like using online calendar builders in part because they end up being too expensive, and as a long-time print buyer working with several printers near and far I can produce a small quantity of calendars for much less. I also find them too inflexible. I’m a graphic designer, and I don’t do well with templates, I like my freedom to follow an idea to its fruition. I like different formats, as long as they can be economically produced (and I’ll find a way to do that—I do it all the time for customers).

Above I’ve pictured the two calendars I published in 2012, 2013 and 2014. They did well for two years, then I had my own issues here with getting them printed before the end of the year, yes, you read that right. I decided to stop calendars for a few years until I would be able to swing the time and upfront cost.

For 2014 I published 12 Sketches of Cats, an 11 x 17 art calendar using my daily sketches. The calendar was printed only on one side of acid-free digital stock, and each image could be framed. I’d published it only one year, again because of time and cost.

These calendars are 5.5″ x 8.5″ and spiral-bound, and I designed them to be bound two ways: on the side so you could use it on your desk or like a little booklet, and also along the top so you could use it as a small wall calendar. They are printed on 100# matte-finish text paper so it’s easy to write on but the art still looks bright and crisp.

In the Kitchen With Cookie I still intend to make into a small cookbook, and for that I need to get my garden in better shape since that’s an elemental part of cooking with Cookie.

I have so many ideas for calendars, and I can’t do them all. Whatever I do, I’d like to do it in September and have it ready for October. That might sound like a tall order, but I sit down and design big projects nearly every day, and I’ve been at it for years. Once I get started, I don’t come up for air until it’s done. And my fine felines will make sure of that!

So here are my ideas

Please let me know which one you like, or what ideas you have.

I need to know which format you’d like best:

  • small desk calendar like Compositions in Black and Green (price about $10.00)
  • standard 8.5 x 11 wall calendar (price about $15.00)
  • large art calendar (price about $25.00)

I also need to know what set of images you’d like best:

  • daily photos, all cats or black cats only
  • daily sketches
  • more formal fine artwork
  • commissioned portraits (note that I intend to publish a new edition of Great Rescues soon)

 

Compositions in Black and Green

images of black cats calendar
Compositions in Black and Green, journal and wall style, two spreads.

Compositions in Black and Green is still a popular idea whenever I share the photos, and I still have plenty of them from between fostering and including fosters like Basil, Bella, Emeraude, Kennedy and Hamlet. You can read more about it on the page I have describing both previous calendars to see that each month had one main photo and then several smaller photos. I could publish this just as I did before, same size and binding, with new photos.

I could make Compositions in Black and Green a regular wall calendar, same photos, just a different size.

12 Sketches of Cats

 

"12 Sketches of Cats Calendar"
“12 Sketches of Cats Calendar”

I’ve always admired oversized “art calendars”, the ones where the art is foremost and the calendar just an incidental means of presenting it. Calendars are printed on quality text or cover stock and are only printed on one side of the page with plenty of clear space around the artwork because the image is intended to be framable with nothing printed on the back.

And so 12 Sketches of Cats is digitally printed in the same archival inks and acid-free natural 100# smooth cover stock I use for the digital art prints I sell. Each page is 11″ x 17″ so there is plenty of space to have the art at or near its native size with room for the name and information about the art with the calendar at the bottom. The calendar is spiral-bound at the top with a hole drilled just beneath the spiral so you display one page at a time.

I sold these calendars for $45.00 which generated a $10.00 donation to a cat rescue. I generally sell my prints that size for $15.00 each, so 13 prints (you could use the cover too) for $35.00 is kind of a bargain. I could sell the calendar for less, though. I have better opportunities for print now than I did in 2013.

You can read more about 12 Sketches of Cats in this post, which includes all three calendars above.

Other themes

Daily Photos would include photos from the past year as well as historic photos, just as my daily photos posts are formatted. I would have one feature each month, or perhaps two if size and shape permit, and then other smaller images scattered on the calendar page. Browse my daily photos here.

Daily Sketches would be built on my daily sketches from 2011 to 2014. There are over 1,000, and still may you many not have seen. Each month would have a feature, and then several smaller images on the calendar page. Brose my daily sketches here on The Creative Cat and also on Portraits of Animals.

More formal fine artwork would include the cat artwork I’ve done through the years but not including portraits as well as the more finished of my daily sketches, such as “Here in the Shadows” and “We’re Going Outside Aren’t We?” Each month would have a feature image, and then several smaller images on the calendar page. To determine what would fit in this category, visit “My Cats” on Portraits of Animals.

Commissioned Portraits would include a selection of the commissioned portraits I’ve finished in the past year. Each month would have a featured portrait, and then several detail images from that portrait on the calendar page. I’ve done several portraits of dogs this year, and I could either make them a focus for a month or stay with only cats. Visit my gallery of portraits on Portraits of Animals.

And one last idea

If there was enough interest, I would love to create a weekly calendar that incorporates all of the above, which would truly represent what goes on here. That would likely be a desk calendar, like a weekly planner, but I could also do it as a wall calendar. It would cost at least $25.00 for all the extra sheets of paper and take far more time. But if there is sincere interest, I will do it.

Let me know what you think!

Please comment below or email me at bernadette@bernadette-k.com. I’m looking forward to it!


Featured Artwork

This week I’ve used this space for potential featured artwork! However…

Each week on Wednesday I feature a piece of artwork, sometimes a current or historic portrait, sometimes an illustration or an art project from years ago, usually cat-themed, but sometimes wildlife or even non-animal subjects, and even projects from my commercial art life. Read other Featured Artwork posts.


Gifts featuring cats you know! Visit Portraits of Animals

AfterDinnerNap-Etsy

Fine ArtPhotographyGiftsGreeting CardsBooksCommissioned Portraits & Artwork



All images and text used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission, although links to your site are more than welcome and are shared. Please ask if you are interested in using and image or story in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of an image or a product including it, check my animal and nature website Portraits of Animals to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.

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Weekly schedule of features:
Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life
Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters
Tuesday: Rescue Stories
Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork
Thursday: New Merchandise
Friday: Book Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy
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Bernadette

From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, The Creative Cat offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats. From catchy and creative headlines to factual articles and fictional stories, The Creative Cat provides constant entertainment and important information to people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

One thought on “Featured Artwork: Calendar Designs, Anyone?

  • September 1, 2017 at 1:30 pm
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    B; what about a montage; each quarter; one idea could be featured IE; January – April; one per each month; photo, sketch, commission, another idea: some of your work that was say photographed IN that month. { like the moon } I think a wall calendar would give you more space to arrange the design and although tablets etc are all the rage; it’s still nice to look at an actual calendar on the wall; hence my vote goes for wall calendar; and I think some still use them for appointments etc. the price is reasonable as well…best fishes and hope you get a lot of feedback ~~~~ ♥

    Reply

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