Free-lance artist wins spot on postal service calendar

September 12, 1996|By Erin Texeira | Erin Texeira,SUN STAFF

A postal worker in Columbia who is a free-lance artist will have one of his works featured in next year's in-house U.S. Postal Service calendar. The painting depicts two children and two adults reacting with glee and curiosity to an enlarged stamp showing a saber-toothed tiger.

Alan Johnson, 42, of Woodstock has won one of 12 available spots in the calendar contest three times in the last four years, he said. More than 270 applicants from around the country submitted paintings and sketches in the contest, which is open to postal employees only, according to Danielle Carbonneau, spokeswoman for the calendar.

In Johnson's picture, a businessman looks quizzically at the golden-hued tiger that appears to be leaping off the stamp and into the scene itself. One child points and smiles, another peers up and over her shoulder and a woman clasps her hands, concerned.

It is called, "Don't Worry, It's User Friendly," and is featured in the month of September.

"Stamps can really come alive in your imagination," Johnson said. "I was trying to show how different people love stamps for all kinds of reasons. This is kind of like the virtual reality of stamps."

Johnson, a postal employee for 11 years, will be honored during a ceremony and art show Monday at the main Columbia post office at 6801 Oak Hall Lane, which is where he works.

About 350 copies of the calendar, which is distributed to postal employees as part of a postal magazine, will be available free to residents at the ceremony.

The other art included in the calendar will be on display during the art show on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of next week.

Pub Date: 9/12/96

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