Orford MNA 618 Sherbrooke Magog 819-847-3911 1 855-547-3911 80,000 years in the making
The story of Picture This on Granite starts way, way back when man first displayed that he was the only animal able to communicate graphically and thus leave a memorial of what he was.
Around 80,000 years ago, a man took a stone to a wall in a cave and started drawing on it. Not randomly, but rendering what he was seeing around him, composing a scene.
Flash back to the beginning of this millennium when Bonnie Goodsell took the ultimate step in the evolution of stone etching, a laser beam would now etch the stone, all controlled by computers, combining the oldest trade with the latest technology. A 2 door garage operation in Beebe, a strange table with a large belt and Picture This on Granite was born.
15 years later, in all states of our Southern neighbours, a Memorial, more often than not, entirely designed and manufactured here, using the latest equipment available. Of those, 40 are considered by Bonnie Goodsell, to be major works.
Most of you have a similar machine at home. Now imagine your inkjet printer blown up to a foot long machine, then remember when your printer decided to skip a couple of lines doing multiple copies of your "oh so cute" cat pictures. At most, a couple of dollars going down the drain. Now if your printer had a full time technician, using the latest revisions of multiple software, calibrating your printer every morning, it would be a different game. And that’s the game that Picture This on Granite is in. Establishing itself in 15 years as the leader in personalized stone. Quite an achievement considering that the business started during the World Trade Center attack, went through the recession of 2008, the fluctuation of the Canadian dollar and kept growing.
Technology played a big part in that progression naturally, in 15 years it has evolved by leaps and bounds. But the latest technological wonder is useless if those who operate them are unable to push themselves to the limits. In fact, as Bonnie Goodsell is pondering her next move, which should happen sometime over the next 18 months, her main worry is where she will find her next employees: ‘I’ve always preferred hiring local people but finding qualified employees is hard.’ She said. And it’s not for a lack of local resources, as her daughter Heather Goodsell pointed out, the Lennoxville Vocational Training Centre that offers a diploma in CNC Operation, a skill required by their business and more and more in the granite industry.
Business that are focused on a niche market, able to withstand foreign competition, are the future of Stanstead, and Picture This on Granite is good proof that it is possible to do so.
Photo: Jason Drew operating one of the laser etching table