Arts Commission grantee launches new arts-related business

IAC-Press Release

November 20, 2017


Rex Van Zant

Director of Marketing and Communications


Arts Commission grantee launches new arts-related business

(Indianapolis, Indiana) The Indiana Arts Commission (IAC) announced today that one of its recent grant recipients in the Arts in the Parks & Historic Sites program has launched a new online arts-related business.

Freelance artist Rebecca Stockert has taken her talents and love of cats to create a greeting card company for a very niche market that she calls "crazy cat people." Cat People Press, a web-based business developed by Stockert, went live in early October. It offers 63 different greeting cards for birthdays, anniversaries, love, and more, featuring the common theme of cats.

"Cat People Press celebrated the complicated relationships we have with cats," Stockert said. "The greeting cards express life with cats: funny, cute, and furry, with the occasional appearance of claws or small dead animals. Cat People Press delivers correspondence perfect for cat lovers with a mix of comedy, dark humor, and absolute adorableness."

Stockert, who resides in Fort Wayne, Indiana, holds a bachelor of art degree with a concentration in ceramics, and a master of arts with concentration in painting, both the the University of Saint Francis. She is also an adjunct instructor teaching art courses at Ivy Tech Community College Northeast, and the visual arts columnist for the Fort Wayne Reader.

"Rebecca is a perfect example of an emerging Indiana artist with an entrepreneurial spirit growing our state's creative economy," said Lewis C. Ricci, IAC Executive Director. "One of Governor Holcomb's Next Level priorities is developing a 21st century skilled and ready workforce, and the Arts Commission will soon be announcing a new program designed to assist early career artists develop skills that allow them to be successful creative entrepreneurs right here in Indiana."

Blessed with both a creative and entrepreneurial spirit, Stockert created Cat People Press as a way to benefit from her love of cats and to create a product that would be successful in the marketplace. Throughout her career as an artist, she said she has always had "some kind of side hustle" into a viable, sustainable business. Her vision is to build a nationally recognized greeting card company that is at home in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Stockert was a grant recipient of the 2017 Arts in the Parks & Historic Sites program. She completed a two-week illustration residency over the summer at the Gene Stratton-Porter Historical Site in Rome City, Indiana. During the residency, she created a series of watercolor illustrations inspired by the poetry of Stratton-Porter. She also did a series of nature studies in the garden and painted a portrait of Stratton-Porter's cabin overlooking Sylvan Lake.

"As a female artist, entrepreneur, and lover of nature, I feel a special kinship with Gene Stratton-Porter," Stockert explained. "She was a woman ahead of her time and created her own small empire here in Indiana, and later in Hollywood. I was honored to receive the IAC grant to do the work with the historic site. Because of the grant, I have gained a new relationship with the historic site and plan to do more with them and on Stratton-Porter in the future."

The Indiana Arts Commission is dedicated to the vision of the arts everywhere, every day, for everyone in Indiana.


(artist image available on request)