I am proud to say that my first ever annual wildlife calendar is like no other you've ever seen! Apart from being beautiful, practical and inclusive, this A3 calendar can be almost completely re-purposed after use! It features 12 of my stunning watercolour wildlife artworks, with the theme of “The Little Guy” - the unsung, often unnoticed heroes of the South African animal kingdom!


SAY NO to piles of annual calendars that are too pretty to throw out! Almost the entire calendar can be re-purposed and used as something else. Each page can be easily ‘upcycled’ into a greeting card featuring one of my wildlife paintings, multiple gift tags, a bookmark and a filing divider (collect all 12 to complete the set - perfect for bookkeeping!).

Below, you can see the basic layout of a monthly page. Scroll down for instructional videos showing just how easy it is to re-purpose your calendar, along with alternative ideas on how to 'upcycle' the various bits.

What the front of each page looks like:


What the reverse of each page looks like:

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Watch the video below for easy instructions on how to re-purpose the featured wildlife artwork to create an A5 greeting card.

* Remove the page by unfastening the wing nuts and removing the top layer of the wooden binder. Remove the top page.
* Flip the page over so that the artwork is facing down.
* Locate the big, blank white block - this is going to become the inside of your greeting card. All you need to do is cut all along the solid line.
* Find the dotted lines on the long edges of the rectangle that you just cut out. These are our folding guides.
* Fold along the dotted lines, match the corners and gently press down.


CONTENT WARNING: If you are offended by a potty mouth, then the blooper reel probably isn't for you!

Before we jump into the madness that is this blooper reel, I thought I’d share the backstory explaining the very first clip:

You may have picked up that your calendar looks a little different to the one I’m using in the tutorials. That’s because I was using the first ever test print here, and during the filming of the first tutorial - how to repurpose the wildlife artwork to create a greeting card - I realised that I had made a huge mistake in the placement of a little text snippet in the inside of the greeting card.

Not only was the text upside-down, it was also on the wrong side of the card — the exact space where someone would expect to write their note!

I was horrified! I had checked and rechecked and rechecked this calendar, but alas… We are but human!

The logical sequence of events should have been this:
1. Order a test print
2. Shoot tutorials while repurposing the test print, thus testing the test print
3. Make adjustments as needed
4. Send to print

But noooooo. No, no, no, no. I was so hung up on my insecurities and awkwardness in front of the camera, that I put off shooting the tutorials for sooo long, that my looming deadline meant I had no choice but to skip from step 1 straight down to step 4, while I mustered up the courage for step 2.

I had already sent the calendar off to print!!!

The video you’re about to see (the same one I used in the greeting card tutorial! Just… trimmed!) was my genuine reaction when I finally realised my mistake.

If you don’t speak Afrikaans, allow me to translate:

Gasp! It’s upside-down!”.

I don’t think I have to translate the “Ffffffff…” that follows...

After stopping the video (good timing!) I ran around like a headless chicken, looking for my phone to call my printers to stop the job. I finally remembered that I was just using it to shoot the tutorial (cuss-cuss). Grabbed it, and then proceeded to completely blank on my printers' name (cusssss). The same printers that I have been using for eight years… Just total, blank space where their name should be… Cue cold sweats and lots more foul language!

Anyway, to cut a dramatic story short — I did finally remember their name, and thankfully, they hadn’t started the job yet. I was saved by the hair on my chinny chin-chin…

The moral of the story: That thing you’re putting off because of some silly insecurity? Just... jump! And then? Learn to laugh at yourself when you face-plant during the landing...! ;)


At the beginning of this year, I made a commitment to paint more. Sometimes, amidst the madness of Life, we lose sight of our purpose. We run out of time, and often sacrifice the wrong things. That is exactly what happened to me while trying to keep my small business afloat - I sacrificed painting. Ironic, I know, since I call myself an artist! 

So, in order to rectify this, I set a goal that would push me to paint more (because we all want to do things, but the actual doing only happens when we set realistic goals that are time-bound!). I decided to produce my first ever wildlife calendar.

And here is the fruit of my labour: a collection of 12 "Little Guys" (not all painted this year, mind you!). They are just some of the unsung, often unnoticed or ignored heroes from the South African animal kingdom. What I loved most about creating these pieces, is the fact that they are not creatures that you would often see represented in art. Even though they are not the Big Five, they are worth celebrating!

Each one of these watercolour pieces took on average three weeks to create (yikes!). I always use a reference photo to work from, without which this level of detail would not be possible. I am indebted to the amazing photographers that have graciously allowed me to use their work!

Below, you can learn a bit more about each artwork. My newer pieces include an impressive time lapse video of the entire creation process, which is really fun to watch! I share some of the creative process in my blog - the inspiration behind the piece; the challenges; amusing incidents attached to the creation... Always a fun read, and I share pics of the process too! All of these pieces are available in my online shop as limited edition, fine art prints, and some of the bespoke originals are also still looking for their forever homes...

“The Waiting Game”

Malachite Kingfisher
Corythornis cristatus

Fine art printsReference photo: Carien Viljoen


Pearl-spotted Owlet
Glaucidium perlatum

The creative processFine art printsReference photo: Katja Soehngen


Flightless Dung Beetle
Circellium bacchus

Fine art printsReference photo: William Steel


My name is Corinne Erasmus, and I'm a full-time artist based just outside Cape Town. The Happy Struggling Artist is a celebration of South Africa's incredibly diverse wildlife, specialising in unique art, gifts and collectables that encapsulate the unique spirit that this amazing country is known and loved for. Everything in my shop is hand-crafted by myself, often in partnership with my wonderful, carpenter husband, Alex.


Please let me know if I do not answer your question below. If you have suggestions for next year's calendar, please do not hesitate to get in touch. I always try to respond to inquiries within 24 hours (but hey, I'm only human!).
I am also available on Whatsapp. In case you missed it, there is a chat button in the bottom right-hand corner of your screen.


For only R590, you get a beautiful, practical and inclusive A3 calendar for 2024. Almost the entire calendar can be re-purposed to easily create:

- 12 stunning greeting cards featuring my wildlife artwork (this alone is valued at R840!)
- 60 gift tags
- Filing dividers (perfect for your bookkeeping!)

Shipping to your door, anywhere in South Africa: R85 (or collect at my home in Somerset West for free!).

Limited stock available!



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