Interior view of Peacock Books & Wildlife Art by Lisa Loucks Christenson
Shop #1 of the Grand Shops of Kahler & Marriott (across from the Mayo Clinic).
Peacock Books sells our homemade fudge, a rotating selection of 161 flavors made from our recipes. Here is our segment on QVC Television with our White Wolf Creek Fudge brand.
Carpie Koi™ - Original hand painted cells, original story, art, and music 2018-2019
Nitoti™ - Original hand painted cells, original story, art, and music 2019-2020
Lisa’s Bald Eagle Documentary™️: featured on Ron Schara’s Minnesota Bound, exhibited at the National Eagle Center and Lisa’s Galleries, The Glacier Stops Here, Post-Bulletin, WEAU-13, KTTC News, The Big Wild, and more:
“If ever there was an eagle lady . . . her name is, Lisa.”—Ron Schara/Minnesota Bound
Lisa Loucks Christenson Wildlife Gallery 2005-2007 in Rochester, Minnesota (ceilings flooded in 2007 flood, destroying much of her art, and her original Winter Bugs! Exhibit prints)
Lisa's wildlife art is created and published under her White Wolf Creek™ imprint, and is sold, exclusively, through her book store, Silver Lake Books™ in Rochester, Minnesota.
Below: Lisa’s White Wolf Creek Gallery & Fudge (Lisa’s husband David is a Chocolatier, and they made all the fudge, that aired on QVC)
Trivia: After spending four years in Stockholm, Wisconsin, Lisa moved her white wolf statue to her White Wolf Creek business in NW Rochester, Minnesota. According to the security camera it was stolen in the middle of the night from it's Rochester location, September ## 2012.
The story doesn't end there. Lisa wrote her stolen, beloved white wolf statue back into a permanent existence in her book, In Search of Spirit Wolf, Book 3, of her Wolves of Whitewater Falls Series.
The irony is the stolen wolf statue featured in the book, went on to become a #1 international best seller.
Features new and used books, Lisa Loucks Christenson's exclusive titles, films, and art, and around 40K titles, that rotate as sold. Rochester's largest children, middle grade and YA selection (about 10K) titles, Christian (3K), the rest are vintage, award winning stories, autographed, local authors, and more. All of the books we sell are purchased outright from publisher's, sales, and events. All titles are hand selected for inclusion into the store. Silver Lake Books does NOT offer a consignment program or trade for store credit. We sell new and used (very good to library binding) titles.
Lisa’s Walk the Talk Show was internationally-syndicated on terrestrial and internet radio, streaming sites world wide. Lisa changed her on-hour show format when she added Lisa LC Book Divas Show™️, a half-hour author show, Lisa shortened her show name in 2017 to the Lisa LC Show™️, a variety entertainment show for celebrities, artists, entertainers, authors, and the great outdoors. Guests are selected by query and submission packages.
Nixa Country - photo is a screenshot from the Wayback machine, broadcast For Lisa’s Walk the Talk Show™️
Lisa’s Walk the Talk Show aired on Voice America with an average audience for her start-up show that she was was about 10K listeners, at the time. Lisa left VA to move into new markets.
Lisa’s Walk the Talk Show™️ Banner featuring Jeff Guidry as Lisa’s Featured Guest for his book, An Eagle Named Freedom | Harper Collins
Lisa LC Book Divas Show banner featuring retired FBI Special Agent Jan Fedarcyk as Lisa’s Featured Guest discussing Jan’s new book, Fidelity | Simon & Schuster
Bow Wow Detectives®️ Is the Official USA registered Trademark owned by Lisa Loucks-Christenson. Please keep reporting all pirated or suspected illegal use of this brand and registered trademark. Report all Web sites, forums, download sites, people, blogs, any site publishing defamatory, libelelous, slanderous malicious content so we may investigate. Lisa has spent a decade building this brand, along with her Meow Meow Detectives™️ as a literary project and books for young readers. Please help keep it going by showing your support. Thank you.
Fly Up Books™️ Offers books for babies to adult young readers.
Glass Slipper Serials™️ Offers Serials in a variety of genres with cliffhanger endings.
Meow Meow Detectives™️ Offers cat sleuths and their human companions that solve mysteries, puzzles, and debunk legends.
TEAP Teacher Educational Activity Programs™️ Offers Educational programs for children, classroom online exhibits, activity books, coloring books, and more.
‘White Wolf Creek™️ Was founded by Lisa Loucks Christenson in 2008, she has had galleries in Wisconsin and later moved WWC to Rochester, Minnesota and expanded to a Wild Game Bistro and Fudge Shop. White Wolf Creek Was featured on QVC Televison.
Quick Bites: Bistro howls with wild game options
3/6/2011 6:00:08 AM
I guess no one told David and Lisa Loucks Christenson about the way we Rochesterites behave when there's a new restaurant in town. They thought they'd open their new bistro, White Wolf Creek, quietly and finish the remodeling and menus as people slowly found them. But that's not how we do things in Rochester. Once word gets out, we flock like geese.
So after a two-week hiatus to finish the bistro, set the menu up and take care of other responsibilities, White Wolf Creek has opened again, this time ready for the influx of curious people wanting to try the newest place in town.
My first thought when walking in to the restaurant on East Frontage Road at 4125 U.S. 52 N. was, "This doesn't look like an old Taco John's."
The Christensons have transformed the interior, including new knotty-pine walls, raised booth seating, and living room areas with a lodge-like feel, complete with fireplaces and comfy sofas and chairs. Lisa, an accomplished wildlife photographer, has many of her gallery prints on the walls, including her well-known eagle documentary photography.
5/13/2011: Fresh Art Tour 2011
White Wolf Creek the Lisa Loucks Christenson Wildlife Collection is SITE 14 on the Fresh Art Tour 2011, May 13-15 at our Stockholm, Wisc., location.
Lisa will be on site to talk about her first seven years on her Lisa's Bald Eagle Documentary, and visitors will get a sneak preview of Lisa's upcoming new release of her Winter Bugs Gallery Edition book, and ebook.
Spring Fresh Art Tour to feature 14 local studios
By Stacy Bengs-Silverberg on May 7, 2011 at 8:00 p.m.
The fresh fragrance of blooming spring flowers and the picturesque Wisconsin winding roads of the Lake Pepin and Chippewa River valleys will entice the senses as people take in this year's annual self-guided Fresh Art Tour, organizers said.
Twelve years after it's beginning, the spring tour will feature 14 local studios and galleries. From paintings to clay to jewelry to hand-forged metal, tourists are able to meet creators and see their works in their homes and studios.
Many of these artists are also garden enthusiasts, creating artistic experiences on many levels.
"There is bit a emphasis on spring plants," said Linda Day, artist and coordinator for the tour.
The event is an offspring from the Fall Art Tour, attracting hundreds from the greater Minnesota areas. Although the first years of the budding tour started slowly, the event has exploded in popularity.
"Spring is just as pretty as fall around here," Day said.
Roads with names such as "Plum Valley Road," "Elk Creek," and "Beaver Slide" lead towns dabbled with cafés, restaurants and authentic inns.
If You Go...
New inspirations and fresh art at the spring Fresh Art Tour.
When: May 13-15 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Lake Pepin and Chippewa River valleys
Site 14 - WHITE WOLF CREEK GALLERY
Features Lisa Loucks Christenson's nature photography, wildlife documentaries and homemade fudge.
Where: N2020 Spring St., Stockholm
More info: 866-837-0350 or www.whitewolfcreek.com
Soar with the Eagles banner and photos for Client: National Eagle Center \ ©️2005-2007 Lisa Loucks Christenson
WABASHA, MN (PRWEB) MARCH 9, 2007
SOAR WITH THE EAGLES WEEKEND at The National Eagle Center is this weekend March 10th and 11th. Lisa Loucks Christenson will be the first speaker of the day on March 10th, 2007, discussing her eagle journey, now in its third year, with the same pair of bald eagles raising their offspring.
Says Loucks-Christenson, "I'm offering the attendee's first peek at my rare and never-before-seen shots of the sibling eagles lives I documented, both on and off the nest." Loucks-Christenson was able to locate the eaglets for over ten weeks daily, after fledging and she. . .
Publisher Offering Behind-The-Scenes Coverage of Lisa Loucks Christenson's Title, The Eagle Nest Coffee Bar & Cafe Publisher offering booklet with pre-orders of The Eagle Nest Coffee Bar & Cafe!
Lisa Loucks-Christenson Donates Collector Print: Greener Pastures Ahead! To 2006 North Central Region Volunteer Forum
Rochester, MN (PRWEB) October 6, 2006 Lisa Loucks-Christenson is donating a special collector print titled "Greener Pastures Ahead!" " A humorous, momentary, close-up look at the lives of cows in a farm field, whom, which, upon her approach, began sticking their tongues out as she created their image. This "must-have," farm-scene lover's master canvas, giclee print was created for the 2006 North Central Region Volunteer Forum. This was a special print among other wildlife photos created and donated by Loucks-Christenson and will be included in their silent auction.
PODCAST 9/14/06 Lisa Loucks Christenson FALL FLIGHT 2006 Podcast 9.14.06
9.14.06 I just got a confirmation that'll I'll be interviewing song writer and recording artist Jack Witteveen. Destined for Nashville, Jack's music will tug at your heart, especially when you close your eyes and listen to his songsHome is Where The Heart Is and My Best Friend I'm hoping to add a couple clips of his songs here, so that you may listen along while reading his interview! Check back soon!
Bald Eagles (Mother eagle with one month old twin eaglets)
From Lisa Loucks Christenson's title, Year Two Dancer and Daedee: Epiphany Season.
Lisa Loucks-Christenson’s Collector Print: Fall Flight 2006 Donated to Ducks Unlimited
Rochester, MN (PRWEB) September 12, 2006 -- Lisa Loucks-Christenson’s Collector Print: Fall Flight 2006 Donated to Ducks Unlimited
Lisa Loucks-Christenson of Rochester, Minnesota, is donating what she said is a rain, fall, and Ducks Unlimited inspired piece. Loucks-Christenson said, "What started out as just a cool, rainy Sunday with the agenda to fulfill the ‘desires of her heart,’ that being to create some new artwork for the Rochester Area Chapter Ducks Unlimited auction, instead turned into a frenzy of wings, as fall-colored feathered birds began flocking to her vision."
Loucks-Christenson picked Sunday September 10, 2006, as the day to go and explore the wetlands after working on her longest running documentary: Walk The Burn, a study of a marsh, which is at 520 consecutive days already.
Ducks Unlimited (the Rochester, Minnesota, Area Chapter) approached her for a donation for their September 21, 2006, Dinner and Auction. Loucks-Christenson had been mulling over which images she wanted to donate.
Loucks-Christenson said, "The image and vision came together as follows: My day started with a flock of wild turkeys I’d been studying and photographing all summer. However, this day was different. They were on the other side of the trail heading up a hill, a younger clutch – maybe two months old, tops, and an older clutch, along with a couple mother hen turkeys. As they reached the top of their climb, I noticed a younger turkey strutting, and another one that stretched up and opened his wings. As I photographed him flapping his wings, a vision unfolded of what I wanted to donate. It wasn’t just one single image. I wanted to ‘make a day of flight’ and fly with whatever crossed my path."
As she hiked on, she came upon a red-tailed hawk. "I’ve witnessed several animals and birds that seem to be my guides in this lifetime, and I follow them unto paths I would not have explored without them leading me. The red-tailed hawk is one such creature, a bird that seems to appear whenever I’m looking for guidance—there he is in flight, or perched, or sometimes flying alongside my truck window. When he arrives, I know good things will follow."
It was because of her deep attachment and this red-tailed hawk’s sudden appearance, on that day, that she felt compelled to add his haunting stare into the image that was being stitched with feathers for the Ducks Unlimited print.
Mid-morning, while covering a back marsh, her eye was pulled to a great blue heron resting in a tree above a marsh. Loucks-Christenson said, "He watched me for a while and seemed tolerant of the clicking of my shutter; then suddenly, he stood and stretched, and stood tall on his long three-foot legs, and when he did, the yellow and red leaves behind him became extensions of the plumes around his head."
Next, she came across a flock of mallards she’d been documenting through the spring and summer that were busy preening atop a muskrat lodge. What were once drab-colored birds, with streaks and splotches of tans and whites, uninteresting and often undetectable in the gold and brown marsh grasses, were now birds with patterns, ducks that had grown into their adult bodies and were decorated with blue feathers on their wings like patches of honor.
Talking about what she did as these females stretched and spread their wings, Loucks-Christenson said, "I shot with a slower shutter speed to capture their movements, as their wings swirled like paint brushes dipping iridescent blues against the drizzle and drops falling on the marsh."
Loucks-Christenson is a nationally award-winning author and a professional photographer whose work appears in books, magazines, and papers worldwide. Some of her credits include: Self Magazine, Woman’s World, Esquire, Diversion, Harcourt, Rigby, Heinneman-Raintree, Pearson Education, Prentice-Hall, and Kirchoff-Wohlberg. Plus, there are hundreds of others.
Join Us on September 21, 2006
Rochester International Event Center
7333 Airport View Drive SW
Rochester, MN 55902
Doors Open at 5:00 P.M.
Social Hour at 5:00 P.M.
Dinner at 7:00 P.M.
Auction following Dinner
Ticket Prices: $45.00 Individual
For the first time this year, we have combined the mens' and the ladies' events. Please join us for a great night!
9/12/06 Volunteers paint bowls at Color Me Mine located at 3160 Wellner Drive NE Rochester, MN for Emptybowls a benfit for Channel One Food Bank and Food Shelf
Emptybowls a benefit for Channel One Food Bank and Food Shelf:
Date: Thursday, October 5, 2006
Location: Rochester Art Center
Time: 11:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M.
Join Channel One and the Rochester Art Center in raising awareness about hunger through art. Kids activities, silent auction and access to all Art Center exhibits is included. Attendees will also receive a simple meal of soup and bread to remind you of all the "empty bowls" in our community. Please check in at the registration table to receive a voucher for your free handcrafted bowl. All proceeds of this event will help Channel One Food Band and Food Shelf feed hungry people in our region.
Log onto www.helpingfeedpeople.org for more information (To see pictures of the volunteers handpainting the bowls at Color Me Mine click on the Gallery Quick Viewer link under the Lisa Loucks Christenson logos and scroll down to Festivals and Events, then select Channel One Food Bank. Courtesy Photos by Lisa Loucks Christenson
Newest Coverage Week Ending 9.9.06
Minnesota State Fair
Como Park Zoo, St. Paul
Dover-Eyota Volunteer Fire Fighter Training
Excerpt from Tuesday June 13, 2006 Post-Bulletin
Eyeball to eyeball with nature
Lisa Loucks Christenson began photographing in the Whitewater Wildlife Management Area in April, 2005, and has been there daily ever since -- no matter what.
Excerpt from Tuesday June 13, 2006 Post-Bulletin
Photo for the Post-Bulletin by Lisa Loucks Christenson
A female eagle cares for its one-month-old eaglet near the former town of Beaver in the Whitewater Management Area north of St. Charles
Eyeball to eyeball with nature
Lisa Loucks Christenson began photographing in the Whitewater Wildlife Management Area in April, 2005, and has been there daily ever since -- no matter what.
ELBA -- In the next few years, you'll be able to sit in your recliner, sip a cup of coffee, and enjoy crisp, startling images of bald eagles raising their young, mosquitoes feeding on the blood of a frog and wildflowers in the heart of the Whitewater Valley.
Savor them, enjoy the work of Lisa Loucks Christenson of Rochester. But know that she went through more than a year of mud and mosquitoes, cold and fog, snow and heat to get them.
You should also know that she loved it, enjoyed the daily trip to the valley in snowstorm and fog, relished slithering through muck to sneak up on a frog, and waiting for hours to get a shot of an eagle.
She has fallen in love with the area around the former town of Beaver in the heart of the Whitewater Wildlife Management Area, the largest block of public land in southern Minnesota.
To get the images, she has gone to the same two marshes near Beaver for more than a year. It's a form of time-lapse photography, only she shoots the same tree (and on the same trip, the same cornfield and barn) and other details daily, along with anything else that catches her eye.
In the past two years, Christenson has also followed two eagles as they raise their young.
To do all of it has required several digital cameras and a lot of clothing. Last week, she wore faded camouflage pants and shirt, and her hair was wrapped in a red bandana. It's not fashionable, but when you're slopping through a marsh and plowing through nettles taller than you are, fashion fades, and reality rules.
She gladly wears that gear in summer, and dresses for minus-30 ("I literally felt like a walking marshmallow") in winter to get pictures for two books on eagles and a third book on a year in the life of two marshes. The one eagle book is due out in October, while the marsh book is due in April 2007, she said. The second eagle book will come out later. . . .
Credit: John Weiss Post-Bulletin Outdoor Writer (In order to view this complete story you need a Post-Bulletin subscription.)
Whitewater Management Area, Altura, Minnesota: Friends and family gather in the marsh with Lisa Loucks-Christenson (center) after she completed her 365 day journey for her upcoming book, WALK THE BURN: A 365 DAY JOURNEY. Left to Right Donny Ball, Darcy Fenske, Dave Christenson, Lisa Loucks-Christenson, Emme Christenson, Forrest Loucks, Paul Briggs, Julie Torgerson-Van, and Billy Heim.
Uploaded: Apr 11, 2006
365 Day Controlled Burn Marsh Documentary Completed!
Lisa Loucks-Christenson, a Rochester, Minnesota native, completed her 365 day documentary on April 7, 2006. Loucks-Christenson’s book, WALK THE BURN: A 365 Day Journey, will be available in Spring 2007. Loucks-Christenson documented over 400,000 images during this daily documentary regrowth of a controlled burn marsh in the Whitewater Management Area in Altura, Minnesota. The book is both a photo essay of the flora and fauna in the marsh returning and a diary of the marsh shown from the marshes perspective. Two exhibits are planned, WINTER BUGS! opens Winter 2006 and is a collection of over 250 species of insects Loucks-Christenson documented while in the marsh during Winter 2005-2006. Many of these species are as small or smaller than a grain of sand. The second exhibit, Walk The Burn: A 365 Day Journey, is a photo collection opening in Spring 2007 to promote the release of her book.
Rochester, MN (PRWEB) April 12, 2006 -- Lisa Loucks-Christenson has done it! Not just a one week story, or a couple months, but an entire 365 consecutive day journey, trudging through all four seasons to document life in a Minnesota marsh during and after a controlled burn.
Friends, family, and local news arrived to celebrate this special project’s end. Loucks-Christenson's book, WALK THE BURN: A 365 Day Journey, is scheduled for release in April 2007.
During the year, Loucks-Christenson documented over 2000 species of flora and fauna in a marsh and their struggle for survival.
While creating this project, Loucks-Christenson strived to shoot at the same time each day to stay consistent with the activities and lighting.
The 365 day journey began with smoke and fire and ended with sleet and rain. This reflects the emotions she felt as she stepped through the exit of the marsh to rejoin her family and friends.
A self-funded, soul-inspiring journey to the center of survival is what Loucks-Christenson recorded during this one year photo essay. A story that goes deeper than a lightening-struck tree. Witness the readiness of the red-wing blackbirds towering over their young until they fly, the destruction of animals’ nests, and those that met death on the highway. This book will move hearts as they encounter animals’ struggle to survive, the devastation, the drought, the deaths, and the elements of nature combating life forces in this controlled burn marsh.
Around 400,000 images were recorded during this daily documentary of the regrowth of a controlled burn marsh through all four seasons. The story begins while Loucks-Christenson was ten days into a sandhill crane study in the Whitewater Management Area in Southeastern Minnesota.
Knowing her nephew Forrest Loucks and her daughter Emme both wanted to see the sandhill cranes, she packed some lunches and drove them down through the Whitewater Management Area to show them these engaging creatures. What Loucks-Christenson, Forrest Loucks, and Emme Christenson thought was just another bend on HWY 74N turned into a one year journey when they rounded the corner and found the DNR staff burning a marsh.
From April 8, 2005 through April 8, 2006 Journey Loucks-Christenson documented over 2000 species of flora and fauna in this marsh.
In total, over 800 species of water and land insect species were documented. The final count is still being tallied, but around 300 of these species were shot during the winter season alone. Many of these species were as small or smaller than a grain of sand. This was the micro experience Loucks-Christenson recorded while also documenting the expected marsh life of birds, mammals, amphibians, reptiles, fungi, and flora.
Loucks-Christenson selected over 100 daily stops and shot the same subject at these stops throughout all four seasons. Some of these subjects made it the entire year; however, most didn't. From plants that were eaten by rabbits, to deer scrapes, to trees hit by lightening and wind, to hail and the unknown, Loucks-Christenson added to this journey what she documented and felt while working through the sometimes unforgiving weather elements and its impact on one small marsh over the course of a year.
You'll see and feel the walk Loucks-Christenson traveled through her words and photos. You'll experience firsthand the story of the marsh. In this daily journal of photos, you'll meet the various visitors. You'll not only see the mushrooms, but the mushroom hunters, the wild turkey and the turkey hunters, the squirrels and the squirrel hunters, the does and the bucks versus the deer hunters, and the ducks escaping the duck hunters. Every day, you'll walk alongside the devotion of the DNR staff keeping this land well-managed, well cared for and see up-close how they have an intimate and the ultimate role in keeping the balance in this land.
Excerpts from the book and photo packages available for distribution.
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PDN's Photo Source:
A photographer and writer for 20 years, Lisa Loucks Christenson has amassed a large collection of stock photos all her own, specializing in nature, food, animals, agriculture, people, wildlife, lifestyles and portraiture. New images are added daily. 2006 will be busy with exhibits, including one called "Winter Bugs!" -a collection of more than 180 species of insects in subzero weather. With a natural gift for documenting nature, Loucks Christenson has collected a tremendous image bank of insects, flora and fauna indigenous to Southeast Minnesota. To promote her book, The Eagle Nest Coffee Bar & Cafe, a documentary/journal, she'll open her Eagle by the Day exhibit, featuring the life and death of two eaglets with photos of their day-by-day growth and first attempts at at flying. Loucks Christenson is also completing Walk The Burn: A 365 Day Journey, a project on controlled burn regrowth with more than 400,000 images already recorded. --Stock Guide 2006
Review: --Equipment Guide 2006
Lisa Loucks Christenson has been a working photographer and writer for more than 20 years. She's presently working on two outdoor documentaries: a controlled burn marsh, and two bald eagle nests she's documenting for her upcoming book, The Eagle Nest Coffee Bar and Cafe. She's opening a new space featuring a gallery of her work with two full studios (one with a kitchen for food photography, one for editorial, animals and advertising) and dressing rooms. She's added many images to her stock, building it to around 120,000 images. She shoots 99% digitally, but shoots film on request, and files are uploaded to a light box. Christenson owns several image collections from the 1890s through 1960s, including vintage shots of downtown St. Paul, the Westminster Dog Show, Chicago State Fair and Barnum & Bailey Circus train. Specialty subjects include nature and wildlife, pets and livestock, zoos, families, Americana, humor and travel, and food and drink. Her client list includes Valutec Card Solutions, Esquire, Self, Woman's World, Prentice-Hall, IBM and Bubba Gump Seafood Co. --Equipment Guide 2006, Stock Guide 2005
REVIEW: Stock Guide 2005
Lisa Loucks Christenson has been a working photographer and writer for more than 20 years, maintaining two studios in her home-one for shooting food and one for products, pets and requests-as well as a small studio in the same Rochester, Minnesota building which houses her and administrative offices. Her files contain between 60,000-80,000 images, covering mainly the United States with an emphasis on the Midwest. "About 80 percent of our photo assignment workload is requests for digital," Christenson says. "We keep the medium-format camera systems, but they are getting used less and less as the demands for same-day delivery of digital previews and high-resolution needs have increased. "Currently most clients e-mail or call in photo requests and we set up a lightbox, or they can set up their own lightboxes for selection of images," she says. "We keep and rotate FTP servers for high-resolution pickups." In addition to her own work, Christenson owns several small private collections of historical images from the 1890s through the early 1960s. In addition to international images, these range from vintage shots of downtown St. Paul, Minnesota, to the Westminster Dog Show, the Chicago State Fair and the Barnum and Bailey Circus train. With specialty subjects including nature and wildlife, pets and livestock, zoos, families, Americana, humor and travel, as well as food and drink, her client list is large and varied. Valutec Card Solutions, Esquire, Self magazine, Woman's World, Prentice-Hall, IBM and Bubba Gump Seafood Co. are just a few from her long list. --Stock Guide 2005
Industry news back next
Eelpout Festival ice-fishing images
Travel writer and photographer Lisa Loucks Christenson covers many odd festivals and events. One of these upcoming events is the International Eelpout Festival in Walker, Minnesota, USA, Feb. 13-15, 2004, where thousands of people will be celebrating the 25th Anniversary of this unusual ice-fishing festival. Lisa will be covering the ice hole competition, the races, the dog sled rides, the fishing contests. If anyone is looking for an unusual photo-text package, or just funny photos, photos of people enjoying the winter season, or ice fishing photos for their publication(s) contact Lisa at 001 507 280-6022. Images will be digital format only, unless otherwise requested, and the story and images will be ready Monday Feb. 16, 2004.
Tel: 001 507 280-6022
Times Plain Dealer September 21, 2001
Cresco used as backdrop for prize winning story
Daughter of former area resident wins second place in 24 hour short story contest
Ken Becker/ News Editor for the Times Plain Dealer
It isn't unusual for me to receive phone calls or e-mails from other news editors, photographers, or writers. Most of the time they are looking for someone to fill a position on their staff and they are either checking on references or to see if I can help them out.
Several weeks ago such an e-mail crossed my desk. What made this one stand out was that Cresco was featured in a winning short story the woman had written.
Knowing there had to be more to the story, I called her . . . Lisa Loucks Christenson of Rochester. During our conversation, I told her that if she were to return to Cresco, I'd spring for coffee.
Normally when I issue an invitation for coffee, it is either forgotten or it is followed up in a month or two. Lisa was different.
"How does next Thursday sound?" she asked. "We'll come down for lunch."
So, a couple of Thursdays ago, I joined Lisa and her husband and their two-year-old daughter for lunch. After the pleasant hour or so of conversation, she commented on how her grandparents told her about going to the Cresco Theatre for a movie when they were young marrieds. Naturally, I offered to take them on a tour.
They were impressed.
During the couple of hours we were together, Lisa repeated several times how much she enjoys Cresco. "It is so pretty...it is so clean. . . it is so interesting. . . it is so . . ." she would say.
It is because of appearance that she made Cresco the backdrop of a short story she wrote. In addition to being a professional photographer, she likes to write short stories.
If she feels the story is good enough, she will submit it to Writer's Weekly for possible selection.
One of the features of Writer's Weekly is to run a 24-hour contest several times a year. They state a topic and the writer had to incorporate that topic into the submitted story. Oh, yes. The writer had but 24 hours to submit the entry with a 1,000 word limit for judging.
Lisa's story was selected second best in the summer's 24 hour short story contest. In addition to the $150 cash prize she received a free lance income kit which includes a one year subscription to the Write Markets Report; How to Wrie, Publish and $ell Ebooks; How to Publish a Profitable Emag; and How to be a Syndicated Newspaper Columnist Special (includes the book, database of 6000+ newspapers, and database of 100+ syndicates.
According to Lisa, the contest attracted more than 300 entrants worldwide. "With a subscriber base of over 56, 000 people, Cresco, Iowa, will gain lots of exposure," she said.
Lisa's mother and grandparents are from the greater Howard County area, primarily Lime Springs and Elma. "My relatives are the Bartels and the Loucks families, " said Lisa. "They lived in the county until the early 60's," she added.
Lisa's plans for the future are to take the winning short story and expand it. How much it will be expanded, she doesn't yet know. I'll just see how it flows," she said. "But I'm going to keep Cresco in the story."
The topic of the contest was as follows: She walked quickly through the dark streets of downtown and noticed that the only lights illuminating the entire block were from the old barber shop which had been vacant for years. Even the barber shop pole was slowly spinning in the dark. When she got to the window and looked inside, she was shocked to see a myriad of couples. . . waltzing.
Following is Lisa's short story:
At seventy-seven, Cora Stephans, a model maker, was nearing completion of her grand masterpiece. The City of Cresco, Iowa, commissioned her to create a mechanical townscape based on her life study of the area. During her studies more than one man studied her, too. In fact, if you asked Cora what made those old men blush, she'd confess: Beauty is only skin deep, but mine's still a dollar short of pin money. Whatever that meant.
She ignored the leers of the widowers, and bypassed the steady gaze from men who never did settle down and marry. Cora avoided divorced men, because they couldn't forget their old baggage. After losing Johathon, her only love, she ignored her yearnings and immersed herself into her artwork.
The townscape of Cresco took years to create and each character was hand designed. From handmade curtains to special flooring, everything within the walls of Cora's townscapes contained the stories, the hopes, and the dreams of real people.
Who could resist the country store? When you opened the door, a hound lifted its head from its paws, and howled. Every store was animated with characters, props, and lights or fans that turned on and off. The player piano played a tune and the mechanical bartender poured a mug of beer. Cora struggled trying to figure out how to keep the beer mugs frosted.
She credited her mechanical skills to her father. Everyone respected Harlan. He was witty and gifted and could make anything tick, and come alive. Cora believed if he were alive before Johnathon died, he would have found a way to save him, too. Cora tapped into her father's gift and expanded upon it.
Her flamboyant mother had a different effect on Cora, who hated her perfume, fancy dresses, and flashy hats. Her mother wouldn't rest until she knew Cora could be depended upon to wear proper attire for every occassion.
Now, Cora combed through the piles of her childhood memories, gathering her mother's comments and attitude, and used this imagery to dress her characters' personalities.
Johnathon and Cora had finished celebrating their engagement with his family. Eighteen, and in love, they hardly noticed the only lights illuminating the entire block were from his family's old barber shop. He lived in the quarters behind the barber shop, and Cora lived above the cafe across the street. He walked her home, kissed her goodnight, and they parted. However, at dawn they were together again, wrapped in each other's arms, sharing one barber chair and one sunrise.
Travelworld International Article
HIT THE HIGHWAY
Photos and Article by Lisa Loucks Christenson
Article Written for Modelstyle New York
NEW MODEL ON THE BLOCK
by Lisa Loucks Christenson
Almost like clockwork, I can expect to see a continual circle of model inquires surrounding a new ad campaign, a new photo advertisement flashed across the big screen at the movie theatres, or a new mailing featuring several local models. When I arrive at my studio, the phone starts ringing, or there are already a few "model hopefuls" waiting at my door to inquire how to get into modeling. Whether they arrive armed with my flyer, or empty-handed but full of visions of being a model just like their schoolmate whose picture is all over every theatre advertisement, they have come to find their path, their entry into becoming one of my studio models.
I don't take walk-ins. What I tell them is that they need to make an appointment and come back prepared. I tell them to go home and go through their magazines and bring to their appointment tear sheets of what looks they what to accomplish, bring in magazine ads they are drawn to, and be prepared to tell me why.
Usually a couple girlfriends arrive armed with moms, who carry new notebooks with page one already filled to the bottom with a list of bulleted questions for me. I love questions! That shows me they are serious and have done their homework, which saves me time answering redundant questions.
At this first appointment, we have only one goal, that being to learn more about how to make their portfolios fit their personalities, what is it going to cost, and how we can accomplish this whether in one, two, or five sessions. A model’s portfolio is never really complete; it's a constantly changing work-in-progress, in which the weakest photos are always replaced with the new bests. Then, we discuss comp or zed cards and headshots to mail to agencies and other photographers.
The next step is booking the model’s first shoot/session and discussing how the model can achieve a successful working relationship with the photographer.
So, how does it work? Let's just start with the model’s first meeting with a photographer, and, for those new to modeling, I thought I'd share a personal story from one of Modelstyles newest models, that being my daughter Emme.
Growing up in front of a camera, you would think that modeling would come easily and expectantly. Not so. Emme has been published in magazines and has been the model used to illustrate books; she's been the model in many advertisements, including my ad campaigns and more.
She's got a professional photographer for a mom and, of course, that opens opportunities to her just because she's usually available on short notice and she only has to travel ten feet into the studio. However, my point here is that Emme knows how to work her expressions, she knows what I expect--and that's key. Knowing how to pose, being willing to try new expressions, and being open to ideas are all positives, daughter or not.
Believe it or not, sometimes my seven-year-old model, Emme, comes up with an idea while we are shooting, and sometimes our greatest images are built from her suggestions. I love it when models can think of a new twist; many times, it's just a word, or a turn, or a jump that sets the scene and secures the shots. Remember, though, a photographer should listen to you or your ideas, but don't be offended if they don't.
When a new model comes to my studio, I want to see professionalism, personality, and sale-ability over experience. If the model has an enthusiastic personality and the willingness to work the expressions selling her confidence, then I'm confident we'll create some terrific shots. The worst impression a new model can make is to arrive late with all her clothes wrinkled beyond Photoshop retouching, not having given thought to what accessorizes what outfit, and then expect me to pull a smile from a sneer.
To build a portfolio of images that capture your expressions you should be willing to learn by listening and following the advice of the professional photographer. Remember, though, not all photographers will agree with each other’s suggestions, either. While walking can be achieved by taking one step at a time, why not focus on the knowledge and experience you will take with you? That way, you can walk out the door at the end of the session no longer a model hopeful, but a model that walks like an experienced model. Every gig, every job, you'll walk a little better until your image shines. Until next time, go check your wardrobe, and start tearing out those advertisements right now!
Excerpt from online photo course:
Lisa Loucks Christenson
Do you have the desire to take photographs of animals like the ones you see daily on billboards, in magazines, and in books? Does the thought of capturing images of a 22-point buck strutting across an open field in the winter, a rooster pheasant running across a farm field, or a flock of Trumpeter Swans gathering at the open spot on the river call to your innermost self? Maybe it is time to explore that desire.
Minimally, you will need a good camera body with an 80-200mm lens, a macro lens, and a 50mm-55mm lens. As your budget allows, you will want to buy a sturdy tripod that will support a 400mm-500mm lens. Purchase the best telephoto lens you can afford; there are many 1000mm lenses on the market that will bring you close to your subject with the clarity you desire.
The wildlife photographer must learn his subjects well if he is to succeed in this highly competitive field. Not only must his shots speak of untapped talent, but also they must evoke a reaction, a feeling that draws the viewer into the shot and keeps him there.
Many photographers use camera blinds or camouflage clothing to blend into the surroundings of their subjects. Cars or vehicles make good blinds, too.
Learn your subject’s habitats and habits, and make a list of the behaviours you can expect during each season. Take a look at birds in the springtime; capture their courtship, nest building, nest sitting, and the care and rearing of their young up through those first flights.
Do you want to photograph woodland creatures such as deer, robins, blue jays, foxes, wolves, bears, etc.? Does shooting in a bog, marsh, or swamp sound fun? What kinds of animals do you want to shoot? Define a want list and then research where you can photograph those species.
A wildlife photographer’s day starts early; sometimes, to get ahead of the birds or animals, he’ll need to arrive and be set up long before sunrise. Depending on his subject, he may work past sunset so he can capture the nocturnal life in the woods, the rivers, marshes, and jungles. . . .
Excerpt from online photo course:
Lisa Loucks Christenson
With wedding packages starting as low as $200 and climbing to $10,000 and beyond, there is little doubt why there are so many people anxious to enter the lucrative wedding photography market.
A wedding photographer may wear both the hats of photojournalist and art director, and typically must work under a looming deadline. To be a great wedding photographer, you need to have a love for people and the desire to please your clients long before the vows and long after the last dance.
To photograph a wedding successfully, a photographer and the clients must first agree on the desired level of coverage. Many studios offer payment plans and accept credit cards; both of these tactics are excellent ways to generate interest in high-end packages. Remember, your work is what will document a couple’s entire wedding story, so it is up to you to set the bar high to create those memories, even if this means accepting a few payments over a longer period of time to accomplish this.
When a prospect calls inquiring about your wedding packages, set up a consultation to go over your policies, proof delivery, use of film and/or digital cameras, paper or online proofing, packages, albums, parent albums and any other questions they may have.
Once a couple has decided to retain your services, present them with your contract and collect a deposit to reserve their date. Remember, you will be turning away other . . .
Excerpt from online photo course:
Lisa Loucks Christenson
How do you begin your career as a stock photographer? The old adage
“Find a need and fill it” still holds true. Do you have a niche market you specialize in? Are you a wildlife photographer? Do you shoot porcelain dolls? Are you an agriculture photographer? Whether you shoot general subjects or specialized ones, there are buyers awaiting your submissions!
To begin, you must have a list of editors and art buyers to whom you may submit your work. Where do you find this information? One good source is the annually updated Photographer’s Market, which, in addition to containing other information of value to photographers, lists the names, addresses, phone numbers and sometimes email addresses and Web sites of consumer magazines, book publishers, paper products producers and stock agencies. These listings indicate what the editors are buying, what they want to see in a submission and how to break into the stock photography market.
Once you have created your list of contacts, you need to find a way to organize your files and information. HindSight, Ltd. (http://www.hindsightltd.com) offers an excellent solution for the busy stock photographer with their In View and Stock View software packages, which can help you organize not only your marketing efforts, but also your contacts, photo catalog and much more. . . .
Excerpt from online photo course:
Lisa Loucks Christenson
So, you want to be a food photographer? To succeed as a food photographer you must crave originality, have an appetite for design, and the eye to conceptualize a client’s wants and needs, often times from a recipe card alone.
Hooking up with a chef early in your career can be very beneficial to your growth as a food photographer. Another person you will want on your team is a good food stylist. They know how to prop and prep foods to help give them the most appealing looks possible.
It is your job to know what lights, gels, and lenses to use for each photo shoot. Food photography is 95 percent prepping and five percent shooting. Keep in mind, an art director will likely be leaning over your shoulder during much of your shooting time. Food photography is a team effort; everyone has a specific job to do, and everyone should be working together to create the result.
Find props that match your set’s style. Put them into the scene but do not make them the focus. Carefully laid linens, napkins, silverware, glassware and other props will all add to the look of the finished shot. Using vegetable or fruit garnishes also adds to the effect.
There are many “tricks of the trade” to help you in your job as a food photographer . . .
Article: Image Theft, Hacking, and Cyber Crime
Lisa Loucks Christenson
Imagine arriving home late one evening, after midnight, and as you open the door you just unlocked and arrive in your foyer, you stare at a mystifying, glowing light coming from your living room floor. Cautiously, and trembling, you slowly walk towards the light and find a small flashlight lying on the floor in plain view.
Just the thought of someone lurking within your home will send shivers up your spine, but take note: someone has been intruding in your house of thoughts and memories, and that someone has left you a calling card, intentionally or not. It’s up to you to look around to see if anything is missing.
How would you feel if you went to sign on to your computer and found that your system had been compromised, your software destroyed, your operating system corrupted, and those images and files you were going to back up this weekend had already been stolen? Or, perhaps worse, you’re using your computer as usual and don’t realize that you have an intruder on board.
Mention the word hacker, and you picture computer nerds whose compulsions sometimes turn them to crime. What you may not picture is the extent to which these hackers will go to invade your life.
I know, I’ve been there. It took me three years to pick myself up and recover from the cyber criminal games that cost me thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars and left scars around my heart, before I found a way out.
What would you do if you knew you were being hacked? Do you know that you’re not? Whom would you call? The police? The FBI? To whom do you report cyber crimes?
I know you’ve heard this a thousand times: “Don’t leave your doors wide open,” yet many still do, not only at home, but on their computers.
Do you post pictures of your clients online? Do you trust the security of your web host company? Are you able to load your images online, those precious images you worked so hard at creating and resizing, captioning and loading, all so you could have your little collection, your corner-store market on the Internet?
Here’s how my wake-up call came:
Big Time Client: “Hello, Lisa, this is Ms. Big Name Art Director. We are interested in using two of your photographic images that we found on your website through an Internet search. What do you charge for front cover usage? Additionally we’d like to use another other image inside the publication.”
I gave a fair price, and we negotiated further for Internet usage, and then I issued her the password so that she could pick up her high-resolution images. After all, the publication was going to press in a couple days and they really wanted my images over some others they had found. . . .
Excerpt from online photo course:
Lisa Loucks Christenson
Have you ever wondered if you have what it takes to become a successful pet photographer? Pet photography is a lucrative market for those who have the skills to tap into it. Do you think you have what it takes to succeed?
Begin by creating samples of your pet portraiture work. Start with your own pets, if you have any, otherwise, use your family and friends’ pets. Expand your portfolio beyond cats, dogs, reptiles and birds. Find some exotic pets, too. Do you know anyone with an alligator? How about a monkey? What about a tarantula? Remember, you want to show your clients that you have the patience and skill to work with subjects of all species and sizes!
Try to do some of your shooting on location. The pet’s back yard or a favorite room in their home are both excellent settings. Most pets will cooperate best when photographed in their own, familiar surroundings; this can be the key to winning a good expression for the final portrait. A nervous, unruly or shy expression will be obvious to the pet’s owner, and they will be unlikely to want to purchase it. It’s your job to be patient and willing to work with the animal for however long is needed, until they are comfortable posing for you.
So, how do you develop your own style? How do you train your eye to see the potential within each pet? Begin by going to a bookstore and looking through all of the pet magazines; look at the advertisements, study the work of your peers. Remember, the photos you see have all passed through a series of approvals by the photographer, editor, art director and ad team.
Once you begin working with a pet, consider its personality carefully. Does the pet respond to whistles? Do they have a favorite squeaky toy? . . .
2005: The Year of the Fourteen-Point Buck
As I drive the last stretch of the road winding alongside the river I have come to known so intimately this past year, I hear his bawl. I look, but he is nowhere to be seen; his voice carries down the valley and disappears. I arrive in his quiet place and he has left me nothing but hoof prints to follow on a deeper journey – perhaps that is why I could hear his lingering bawl.
I walk along the riverbank in the mild 30-degree temperature of this December morning, staring at the stillness of the snow above the river flowing beneath the ice – a morning on which I search, in hopes of finding him up ahead. In the shadows of the fresh mud under his tread, I pause and bend down to run my fingers over the wide span of his tracks into a better trail ahead, and I follow his path anxious to learn more of his wanderings.
When I least expect an appearance, he dashes into my view; his stride is one of wisdom and cunningness. He stops and turns to see if I’m following, but I’m not. He bows his head and when he does, a doe rises from the brush. He stands above her, guarding her and encouraging her forward; he is willing to take the fall in her place.
In those few precious moments, my eyes never leave his and I snap my shutter without even looking through the viewfinder. If I were a hunter with a gun, he would have seen his last moment, for even my untrained eyes were able to find him against the background of the brush.
The doe moves onward down the steep river bed and disappears from harm’s way, but that buck – that fourteen-point buck – stood guard; in his stare I saw both a compassion and strength – a calm even unto death – even if that were the end.
His eyes bowed to my constant grip on his and he slowly turned, river-bound, and walked away. In my life I’ve never encountered a buck of this size, and considered myself fortunate to have this creature present himself to my view.
Each year I sit down on the last day of the year and pound out my year-end story. I always hope that the words I write will one day inspire and lift another’s soul. I’ve been presented with so many opportunities for spiritual growth this year; I just lack the time to write them all down.
Today marks 268 consecutive days of a controlled burn at a marsh; I’ve been documenting it through all different kinds of weather, and I seriously considered ending the project at the year’s end. However, in the past two weeks, I’ve encountered and documented about forty-eight different species of insects carrying on with life – unaffected, it seemed, by the snow, ice and changing terrain. Somehow, their ability to overcome their new and harsher surroundings gave me a renewed inner strength. I wanted to document, if nothing else, that they were there and I noticed. . . .
Lisa's Interview in Rohn Engh's Book: The Image Peddler (Sept. 2006)
I was only eight years old when I began scraping my allowance together to buy a package of black and white Polaroids. Every couple of weeks, I’d have saved enough for another eight shots.
Back then, eight was my lucky number, and when I look back at all the images I’ve created in my lifetime, over a million, my most cherished shots are still those Polaroids I snapped of my family, first pets, neighbors, and what wildlife I could find. I wouldn’t trade those few frames for a million bucks.
By the time I was fifteen, I’d already purchased my first 35mm camera and won a photo contest in the National Enquirer with a human interest shot of my little brother kissing Petey, my parakeet. I didn’t know that that particular photo would launch an entire career of publishing my images in what was a relatively new concept - Stock Photography.
There I was – fifteen and with my first national credit. I didn’t win the grand prize that year, but I won something far more valuable than the $500.00 grand prize. I won the confidence to market more of my work.
I’m telling you this, as a friend and possible mentor, “Just send out your letter. Send out your photos. QUIT worrying about the rejections. You will get them. You really do get used to them. The day really will come when you quit looking at the rejections as tough blows. I promise you the day will come when you look back and see it really wasn’t personal. It was a business decision.”
I kept going because of the insatiable drive to see my work in print. Shooting seniors, families, weddings, kids, yearbooks, directories, and newspapers were not enough for me. I wanted to be in consumer magazines. I wanted to be in books. I wanted to know how to reach those types of editors. I craved to know how to get them to call me.
Those desires led me to the library and bookstores where I checked out or bought any book with the words “stock photography” in the index. I still have Rohn Engh’s first edition of Sell and Resell Your Photos, and my 1984 edition of Photographer’s Market in my private collection. Now you have Amazon, Borders, Barnes & Noble, eBay, Google, and the entire Internet to a search for information on stock photography.
In the early nineties, I took up writing and scratched my way through gaining those first clips, which led to a literary agent who sought me out and obtained my first major book deal. Unbeknownst to me at the time, I also had someone lurking in the details. Somewhere, I’d had the misfortune of also signing up with an untimely hacker.
Suffice it to say, I saw my career reshaped by an uninvited guest. I’m telling you this so perhaps you can see ALL that glitters can be COLD, too. Once you become adept at collecting rejections, you learn to glide right over those kinds of words. I refused to let that be the end of what I felt was my calling in life.
So, I got busy. I hired better IT people. I hired professional investigators, and I refused to quit. I dug deeper and went back into the field to write and photograph the natural world.
Once I left the comforts of home and went into the unknown, opportunities were literally chasing me down the unmarked trails in the woods, through the prairies, and sloshed right behind me in the marshes I inhabited while laying low in the muck with the frogs. It was just that little change of perspective and a wider angle lens. That’s what it took for me.
I needed to focus on the business end, but from a non-hackable perspective.
First, I ditched all my previous computers, . . .
Gerten's on Valutec
Lisa Loucks Christenson
Gerten’s Greenhouse Founder, Frank Gerten, originally settled on only a few acres in Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota in the early 1900’s. Frank sold the produce he grew from his truck. He had a motto he lived by, “Buy from the grower.” After Frank’s two sons, Bob & Jerry, took over Frank’s truck farm, they expanded into operating a full-service garden center. They quickly developed a reputation for quality plants for less.
In 1989, the third generation of owners, Lewis Gerten, who manages the greenhouse production, Glen Gerten, who manages the nursery production, and their brother-in-law, Gino Pitera who manages the retail and commercial, took over ownership. Since then, they have grown from 12,000 square feet of retail space and three greenhouses on three acres to almost 40,000 square feet of indoor retail space, 10 acres outdoor irrigated retail space, and nineteen greenhouses on over seventy acres, and over five acres of brickyard. This new retail space includes a 1500 square foot Gift Shop, a 1200 square foot Grill Zone, Landscape and Design Department with two designers, and a 2000 square foot Water Gardening and Outdoor Living Center.
Gerten’s inventory which can be purchased on site or online includes: over 350 varieties of annuals, over 600 varieties of perennials (plus 190 types of rose bushes), over 225 shrubs, over 150 varieties of evergreens, over 175 and varieties off ornamental trees. Gerten’s also has one of the largest displays of Christmas lighting and accessories, and the areas finest selection of artificial, fresh, and permanent Christmas trees.
What is the secret to their success? Space, knowledgeable staff, attention to personalized customer service, the constantly changing scenery of their work environment, and the Gerten’s classes and seminars offered throughout the year to educate the public on various plant care techniques. To better serve their customers, Gerten’s sought out Valutec Card Solutions for their Electronic Gift Cards.
Currently, Gerten’s offers three cards: A Gift Card, a Reward Card, and A Plant Card. Next year they will be changing the look of their Gift Card by changing the name to a Gerten’s Shopping Card. Only two and a half years into using the Valutec Card Solution program, they have sold a combined total of over 20,000 cards.
Julie Anderson is the E-Commerce manager for Gerten’s, she is in charge of creating the web site information, promotions, implementing the Valutec Cards Solutions Program, and creating the gifts, and rewards, Gerten’s customers may redeem from their reward cards.
What sold Julie on using Valutec?
“I put out a lot of inquiries. And honestly, Leslie, their salesman was the nicest one out there. He said he just lived over in Burnsville, which is really close. So he came out right away, as if it was no trouble at all, and he just gave the right presentation. Everyone at Valutec has been so easy to work with,” Julie added.
Do people spend more money when they are using a Gift Card?
“We always know people will spend more with a gift card. I would say they spend about 20 percent more.”
Out of 20,000 plus active cards, how many have been deactivated?
“I would have to look at the paperwork, but I would guess maybe, two percent.”
Gino Pitera, is one of three owners of Gerton’s.
Why did Gino selected Valutec over someone else?
“Specifically, we were looking for someone to offer us electronic gift cards. The Reward cards were a bonus.
Why Gerten’s switched from paper certificates to the Gerten’s Gift Card.
“People would lose the paper certificates, we’d transpose a number, and paper was hard to make change with; it was cumbersome.
How did switching over to the Gift Card change this?
“If they lose it, we can easily find out what they had. When the gift card empties out, a customer can recharge it. They can get down to their last penny. We have an extremely high redemption rate.”
Is there anything Gerten's would change about using the Gift Card?
“We will be changing the Gerten’s Gift Cards name to the Gerten’s Shopper’s card. The words “Gift Card” limited the marketing. When we change the name, we will put different sleeves on it for our different promotions.
Why did Gino decide to use the Reward Card from Valutec?
“Our motives for loyalty with Valutec are probably different then other companies. I wanted to build a clean database of customers, unlike using a mailing list. I want to nurture the relationship with any customer who says, ‘Yeah, I’ll spend $15 for a Gerten’s Reward Card.’ Now we have a mailing list of 15,000-20,000 customers, and a clean list we can e-mail our promotions to inexpensively or send out mailings to.”
Using the Reward card has helped Gerten's business by saving money and retaining their customers.
“We’ve reduced our marketing costs and bonded our customers to us. We wanted to make it valuable to us, and to our customers. Valutec has helped us do that.”