You'll hopefully have noticed the beautiful and unique illustrations we use on our labels and on our website, depicting "Western" and "cowboy" themes. At RGTM we are trying to introduce a culture, to impart an emotion as well as a sense of place to our products. The first round of products include our salsas, each of which was given a "cowboy" theme or iconography associated with it - the "trail rider, "the barrel racer", the "bull rider". Our tortilla chips product features "La Norteña", a representative figure who embodies the spirit of the culture of northern Mexico and southern Texas.
The artist responsible for those illustrations is Anne Buchanan. Anne lives and works in the US state of Massachusetts, not far from Boston. Anne also happens to be a member of my inner family and has thus shared with me the experience of years living and travelling in Texas and Mexico, so she understands first-hand the spirit we are trying to capture with the label art.
Anne is a former university genetics researcher and writer who has made a successful transition to becoming an extremely talented illustrator and painter, using a variety of media including pencil, charcoal, watercolour and paint, and employs both traditional as well as digital methods. When she is not busy creating cowboy and southwest art for us, Anne's subjects include a variety of still-lifes, including animals, people and other objects. Her work can be found online at www.annevbuchanan.com as well as at various exhibitions in North America.
Much of Anne's work and inspiration is centered around subjects found around her in her native Massachusetts. She has a particular fondness for capturing birds, but images of people and other scenes are often found as well.
We look forward to continuing our collaboration with Anne. And here's a little hint: the image at the top of this post - the Zydeco music player from Louisiana - is the subject of an upcoming RGTM product!
by Richard Weiss