American Made Since 2000

Stephen Kline

Tampa, Florida
I've created a new drawing technique that involves writing a dog breed's name over and over, producing the dog's image using only words.

Tell us about your business.

The signature lithograph that started my art business was an image of Santa Claus that I sent my friends drawn only from the words "Season's Greetings". The next holiday season I noticed that many of them had framed my Old Saint Nick print, and hanging it became a yearly tradition. Because of my love of dogs, I then tried out the technique using the dog breed Weimaraner. The lithographs sold well enough that it inspired me to draw another, and then another. I have now drawn 125 dog breeds and am included in the American Kennel Club store. I can hand-apply the name of the purchaser's dog into his or her print, and for those patrons who want their drawings even more personalized, I can draw their dog out of the pet's name. Thanks to these drawings, I have not only made new friends worldwide, but I have been able to generate thousands of dollars for dog rescues across the globe through my donation program. My business is evolving with more drawings and an expanded distribution network.

What makes your business stand out?

I am richly rewarded with the most beautiful letters of thanks and appreciation from those who purchase my work. What an incredible benefit! I also strive to give the best customer service ever devised, to treat each customer as I would a loved family member, and to work with my vendors as though my business depended on it, because it does.

What's the best business advice you've received?

Love what you do and follow your instincts.

Mark Your Calendar

  • Nominations
    June 3–Aug. 29, 2014

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  • Judging
    June 23–Sept. 9, 2014

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  • Online Voting
    Sept. 15–Oct. 13, 2014

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  • Winners Announced
    Oct. 17, 2014

    2014 Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.

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    Nov. 7–8, 2014

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