First Greeting Cards and Calendars
In fact, the greeting cards came society before the calendars, and there was a company and newsy uncle john sands who, you know, my work was kind of becoming well known in terms of specializing in babies and, um and, you know, when I when I started to do portrait, stop me if I'm going on too long about this, but, you know, I I started to gain my confidence, I was like, you know, and you want to aim to be the most well known uh, child photographer in auckland in new zealand that's my goal, and when I got to new zealand, I had a wonderful opportunity with the magazine over there called more magazine, who I'm not sure if they're still around today, but I took my portfolio in there and there was a picture of a little girl in the tutu I think she's in here somewhere, well, come across it, but there was a picture of a little bill in a tutu there was hand colored and they just fell in love with and they printed it full page in more magazine, and the phone started ringing off the hook. You kno...
w? I don't think that's what happened, these ties that it was in, you see, lend it recite. I was just so shocked I remember standing in a what do you call him in new york the diggers on like a little corner store waste clone dairies in new zealand very dear a derrick that's what they call in your corner stores in australia and anyway, so I went to buy more magazine and I opened it up and I'm standing in this the data in new zealand and oh it's the first time I've ever seen anything foolish I thought well and the guy behind the counter who was indian I think it was it didn't speak very good english I'm like look at this is my photograph and his height you gonna bonnet magazine like yeah, yeah yeah but it was thrilling was that sort of feeling, you know? So the greeting card came from may be coming let me go back to they said their I was I want to be the most well known portrait photographer in oakland and then more magazine kind of launched me into probably being the most well known I mean the best or anything but the most well known portrait photographer in new zealand and then, you know, the greeting cards started and the calendar started which was not being done right I mean, this was no well new concept it's interesting um that's it's a really good question because people said to me or why would you want to do a baby calendar than this baby calendars everywhere and I was like I couldn't find any there aren't really that many where they went at the time this and my first calendar was nineteen ninety two um and people seem to have this attitude like a lot of photographers you cited me oh, I stood to that when I was first starting out meaning then they went on to something more important you know, I know it's like you really don't get it do you just really do not get how important these little babies are you just you know, and it's still the same today in a lot of wise, you know, in the middle of my career I thought our went away but it's still there you know, people still this kind of all figures babysat really are, you know, because babies and and then people go home and play with their babies who were the most important person in the world today miss I kind of don't get that can you right, yeah it's but anyway, so the greeting had started and you know, a lot of my early imagery that I created from portrait's and you know, these air someone like um portrait's that that I used to do it but it's a lot of the images that people know of mine um we're specifically created a greeting cards that were created for you know, like the babies and pumpkin we're ok well, if you're doing you gotta do thanksgiving cards, you better do easter cards you got to do holiday cards and christmas cards and birthday cards and things like that and so that's where a lot of the theming came from in terms off a lot of the images like their little babies in bunny suits that that was still rock out every easter right can of these babies are in their twenties and they probably I look at them and I go really oh my god, you know, people I love those bunnies, you know? And so they've become classic but kind of feels weird to me because I'm like so long ago so long ago that I did those things but those themed images were for those specific reasons you know, how did your first greeting card become successful and how did that shift? Well, the first greeting card was really a range of greeting cards and I think that was one of the reasons for um you know, if you won, one card does not make a ruling can range and so you have to have a bank off images too, you know, and greeting cards it well their whole machinery in terms ofthe having to produce imagery constantly to feed this machine because the greeting cards you know you're working to a deadline that's a year ahead for when they come out and things like that the greeting card started in new zealand and you know, images like this one for instance if you guys can see it we had one of the mothers it's not how do you get all of these little guys you know, in white socks I could do this these days you aren't even allowed to do this these days you know where was it's nineteen ninety three um and know that walker's you know it's like how you keep them concentrating on them bath and I was younger in these days you know? I don't I couldn't people that journalist stuff today it's like you're not too old to be doing the list but and one of the mothers said well why don't I get in the bath and lay in the bath and talk to them all? So that's what they're doing there looking over here and she's got all these toys and everything you know things you have to do it but yeah so the greeting cards where sourced in a lot of ways from the years of portraiture you know, in all the gorgeous pictures of children that I've done and then the pressure was on me of course to start to create seasonal work on dh so we did that for a few years and they became very, very successful um but the the reason for the success of the greeting cards or they became very, very successful when that could be displayed in a great thing and when they went into the u s it was with a company called portal and portable fan tested you know, everybody was it was in that when greeting cards are in their prime, you know, I still like to write letters and notes and things like that, but I don't have very novel of you yeah, I mean, he lost his greeting cards these days and so on, but it was that was just everywhere critic has the so so popular and my husband killed said to the people a portal you need to put on and get his logo on the front of the green cards and this hadn't been done before and they said to him, you can't you don't do that because people will think and get us a sending them a card it just went this might work don't do it because this whole be the interview grain can't sooner and kelsey it no, no, just trust me do it just put it on their right and that's where at the end gives thanking his brand started, you know, because people buying and get its card on dh then it was anger this calendar you know, chris, the calendars came, um I think the cards were slightly before and my face calendar was in nineteen ninety two what was the theme in the first calendar and are their images in here? The first calendar was my classic imagery on dh joshua hanging on may talk for what it's I'm just saying that that this he was the cover of my very first calendar in new zealand on dh images in there were more award, the one said, I created once a month, no and the cabbage acute is and so on and, you know, the the calendars as opposed to the green cards, where a catalyst in terms of my creativity moving forward, because in my mind, this there wass and still is no, I don't shoot through greeting cards anymore, but there was a huge difference between what I would shoot for a greeting card and what I would shoot for a calendar, because the calendars were more important to make them more classic, more, um, images that people needed to look at for a long time, you know, for a month or the four month page, you know, obviously, but so, you know, when I first my fist calendar came out in new zealand in nineteen ninety two, we couldn't find a publisher, um, and so we actually paid for the printing of the calendars ourselves, and they were distributed through a camera stores in new zealand and because we just couldn't get a publisher because they were like and by killing this you know um and so that's why we do it and it was it was win kill live television and started to come and work with me because I was getting to a stage where you know I have to manage the business and do the creative side of those well and so he left eighty years to television and came to manage this big leap of faith it was a big leap of faith yeah you know, the following year was sold their house to pay the printing bills to print a calendar in australia but just kind of getting ahead of myself a bit here but we had so much stock left over from the nineteen ninety two calendar car remember how many result that we used to go door to door selling columbus right girls yeah um uh helmets mitsubishi van and the girls used to sitting in the back with little books that they be reading upside down then you know also and I would drive and kill who used to be the programme director of you know, a television network in australia would there knocking on doors saying would you like to buy calendar and you know and but how we have fun with it you know I will like what are we doing this site saying right and the other thing that happened with the nineteen ninety two calendar was at the time I met a woman, sarah fei, who had was had bean doing a lot of charity work in new zealand, mainly for the variety club. You know, which is wonderful charity and had the variety club here in the u s raising money for children with cancer. And and, you know, obviously, you know, it was a it was a very good that we do know, yeah, but you get my drift on our side. And this was in nineteen ninety one before the calendar came out and I was at a function with her happened to be on the curia to we're having ring something. You reported about reason, and I got chatting to here in and she was telling me that she had recently I decided to try and raise money for the prevention of child abuse and neglect and, um, that it was very, very difficult that she had bean. She was very influential and had been raising money for variety. And how is it was to get into boardrooms of companies? Because child canta on dh kids in hospital and which is really worthy is really socially acceptable, and people are all yeah, I want to help, you know, but as soon as you she said, I want to raise money for their prevention, child abuse and neglect is that no way there is no way, you know, in those days in the early nineties, you couldn't even say child abuse on television, really? No, you could not say child abuse on television because, yeah, denial, and because one started thing that happened and somebody found and complain and said, what am I supposed to say to my child when they ask quarters talib you sooner? And it was just it was unbelievable. So when the first calendar started, um, we donated a certain amount of the proceeds to the prevention of child abuse that just really got me going because I was like, you know what? This is just wrong. And so I said to her, well, hold onto our cocktails, and I'll do this calendar was anne in new zealand, and we'll talk about it on the way, you know, and we'll make child abuse something socially acceptable to talk about. And ever since then, kellyanne, I threw out get his philanthropic trust of worked to raise the level of awareness of child abuse. Which I think is really, really important. There are, you know, these days, you know, we hear so much about it, you know, with the catholic church and, you know, all sorts of, you know, everybody knows, and everybody, some more aware. But in those days, you know, people would just think, I don't think it's possible for someone to do that to a child, you know, there's, a lot of of shame and and blame versus cancer, right? Where there's, no explicit world, is the one that's always blamed right on this is near and dear to your heart, it's, very near india, to my heart.