So it went like:
"Hey Brenna, you got an idea for a farmers market themed tee? I want to do something different from last year and put it on a red bleached tee."
"What about something with a red tractor?"
"Yes! Oh, yes, yes!! I have a red tractor graphic."
We were hanging out at my mother in laws house with my niece Brenna, my husband Jeff, and of course Ms. Karen, my sweet mother in law. We ate supper, hand washed the dishes, played with Sally, our puppy, and finally set down with the computer about 10:00 on a Saturday night.
I started pulling on some graphics I had on my computer - the vintage red tractor, baskets of produce and flowers. The squash was grown by Brenna's family last year, we grew the cucumbers, the best ever blueberries were purchased at last years farmer's market. The basket of sweet potatoes once decorated the Yamboree band stand (our county fair is centered around a yam.) The sunflowers were some I used in flower arrangements and the wildflowers were grown in our yard and (digitally) placed in my Granddaddy's old well bucket. I grew up driving my Granddaddy's Farmall tractor in the hayfields, when I was a kid and Brenna's Granddaddy had a restored Farmall they played on when they were growing up. Red tractors are definitely a part of our history.
Brenna "what about adding some animals?"
We tried some of our cow pictures and they just didn't fit. I had some farm animal silhouettes, that we tried and by midnight we were like, Ok, its done.
Sunday. Jeff: "You need real animals. That's just not right."
Well ok, then. We went searching for farm animal clipart and purchased some.
Sunday night, after supper again, Brenna and I worked on updating our image with the farm animal clipart. We saved our work and was excited about it all looking more life like.
Our sweet puppy, Sally May, had recently started travelling with us and made a fast friend in Brenna. They played together a lot and Brenna had taken a pretty picture of Sally sitting in the kitchen floor. Sally set in Brenna's lap, while I was designing on my computer. "It'd be cool if Sally could be in the graphic."
"Oh yeah!" Grabs my phone, pulls up the picture Brenna had taken, removed the background, uploaded it to my file sharing app, downloaded it to my computer, and there she was setting by the produce baskets!
Save As... again. Then it was time to call it a night and go home.
About midnight, I text Brenna (we are both night owls) and ask if she would have any goat or horse pictures we could use? Brenna was an award winning photographer in 4H and has a love of photography like I do. She had showed me some of the animal pictures she had recently taken, so I knew she had some good ones.
She sent some pictures and the next morning I went back to editing. I looked through my pictures and found a cow picture to go along with her horse and goat pics. I removed the backgrounds and adding them to the farm scene.
A few more tweaks and saves and we were tickled with the outcome. We added both our initials to one of the baskets, because we just felt like our work needed signing. We added the Rocking E brand and 2021 to the tractor. (Due to trademark / licensing / copywrite type stuff, I won't use the tractor brand name, make, or model.)
So our final image has Opal (our heifer), Brandy the horse (who belongs to my mother in law and picture taken by Brenna), Tex the goat (who belongs to Brenna's family) and our sweet Sally May. A few chickens and a cute pig also make up the image.
Fun little side note about Sally - we already have a Hank and Drover, named after the main characters from the Hank the Cow Dog series, so when it came time to name her, I looked up characters from the series to find a girl name. Sally May was wife of High Loper, chief of the chicken coop, and manager of the vegetable and flower gardens. (according to Wikipedia) I knew Sally May was the perfect name for her as a puppy and that she would in fact be a part of our flower and vegetable gardens! How pretty is she posing in out gazebo?!?
Of course she's loving playing in the dirt, helping get the garden soil prepared for planting. Our goals are to have some extra produce to sell some at Farmers Market this summer.
We had a great time collaborating on this graphic! It took time and more edits than usual, but we feel like the hard work was worth it and the shirt tells a story.
Last years shirt said "Support Your Local Farmers," and Brenna suggested adding "and Ranchers" so we did. It's a powerful message and we believe it needs to be said over and over again. I grew up watching Horace McQueen on the Farm and Ranch Report. It came on at 6:00 am and we ate breakfast, listening to him, before we got on the school bus. Everyday he reminded us the "if you eat, you are involved in agriculture" and that's stuck with us for many years.
We will be joining the Gilmer Area Farmers Market again this year! Although, please take note, there are new hours and different days. It will be held the first and third Saturday evenings (except July when holidays will affect schedule) from 5-8 pm on the Gilmer Courthouse Square (empty lot by Stewart Insurance and Hil-Tex Insurance formerly known as the Roberts Building, on the northeast side of the square, just a block from US Hwy 271 and Hwy 154.) There are lots of new businesses and restaurants on the square. If you haven't been lately, you should really come check it out. We've also got items inside P20 Land and Cattle Interiors and More on the opposite corner where the new mural is at (at Davis St and 154/Tyler St.) The new speakers are up and there should be music playing and a great time to be had at the market.
Our Farmers Market themed tee will be available at the Farmers Market or you can order online. If you want to order online and pick up at the market, you can use coupon code LOCALDELIVERY and let me know you want to pick up at the market. Also, for the first time ever, we have YOUTH sizes as well, so we have Youth XS all the way through Adult 3X!
We hope you enjoy the story and history behind this shirt and as always, we thank you for your support!