Saturday, February 27, 2010

"So How is the Pottery Business Going these Days?"

"Fine, thank you, just fine." And then the potter thought about how much there was to do that day.

Sometimes my business feels a good challenge. I love being a potter, having my own business, and making pots. Money? I am not in it only for the money or things would be different here. Everything would match and I probably would not smile very much. I would not be in the studio I have now, small and off the beaten path. The studio has a good feel, especially when weather is good.It has been easier when people had a little extra money to buy things they love. And, it is so much easier when the good weather come back.

And of course, friends are still trying to "fix me." Ideas for growth and success are tossed my way every day. I appreciate it but what I really need is just more time for production and to be able to think. Every day is open studio here and any artist who has ever been on a "studio tour, open to the public" knows what that is like. It makes it difficult to plan a work day. Wanna be's stop by, friends needing to vent drop by, and any one else who has a little time to kill. The door is open.

I just cannot stop. I love creating. I am always happy to see some one love what I have made for them, people who know the beauty of one of a kind well crafted pottery. And, it is kind of fun to think how many pots I have made over the last almost 40 years. Thousands and thousands of my pots are out there. They will long outlive me, the potter. I still get calls with people searching for a local potter who died about 10 years ago. I think that is fantastic. He is still in demand. I think that would put a smile on his face.

I guess I probably won't ever be wealthy but I have a rich life. I stay just busy enough to not get ahead and make all things I want to make. I stay busy enough supplying people with clay and glazes to be just a little interrupted and help others but not make much profit. Online stores are like giant Walmart that under price me and are so available at the touch of computer keys and paypal. Customer service and answers to many basic questions is the perk they get buying from me. Still some rude customers will pump my brain and still save a dollar and buy what they need offline.

My Grandmother told me once, "The depression just came and went and I never knew the difference." She raised 5 kids alone, worked in a grocery store and took in ironing as well. She waited for her husband to come back from Texas after trying to find work there but I think he fell in love with playing the spoons in the local bars and never came home. So much for the trust fund.

So, I will ride the wave, keep making lots of new pots, try and get into the online biz a bit more, teach here and there and just keep on keep looking for the balance of life and cash.

So how is the pottery business these days? "Fine, just fine, and you?"

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