and it's good to be home........ (mug by Lorna Meaden)
My mind is reeling from a weekend of rain, mud and pottery patrons. The rain, humidity, freezing temps and then heat seemed relentless this year and yet there were wonderful pockets of sunshine. Set up on Wednesday went pretty well weather wise and other wise too. Thursday morning the only thing left to do was pricing.
The show, Ohio Mart at Stan Hywet Hall in Akron is normally an hour drive. Thursday morning turned into a two and half hour nightmare drive and I wondered if I would make the opening to get the lights turned on. If we have the technology for driverless cars we should have the technology to disengage a cell phone when your car door shuts! 911 would be the only number you could dial. I do not own a cell phone as I have squirrel syndrome. I would also break limbs as I would be looking down all the time and I prefer to look up these days. I encountered not one but two accidents on the way down. I was also unaware that the berm is a passing lane if someone is in a hurry. WTF people! Also we are just not nice to each other anymore! Need to do a bit of pondering on that one. The ride home was not much better. Friday morning only one accident.
My brain is playing havoc with me this morning. I sold well. What did I sell? Mostly mugs with gingko designs or bunnies and carrots. I was sold out by Saturday morning. I price mugs at $32.00. I had carved porcelain tea bowls that I personally love and only sold one. Iron reds just sat there, celadons just sat there. The end of the show and right side of my booth was pitiful. The left side looked like the day I set up.
The drive home was great as the load was considerably lighter, my bank account had a reprieve and it was Sunday.
Soooo here is the dilemma. I spent 6 weeks weaving pots for gallery shows. I have sold two pots at the gallery shows for a total of $234.50. Are pots that are fussy, high end better made by artists working at universities collecting a regular pay check and getting hospitalization? I don't know and I am not being snarky it is just a reality. I don't get retirement and I am only as good as my last firing, not so much my last gallery show. I am now thinking of how many mugs and bowls I could have made in those 6 weeks and had a bit more in my bank account. Seriously this is driving me bonkers. I have another show in 4 weeks and will be in the studio with the pedal to the metal trying to catch up on what was sold. Mother Hubbards cupboard is bare. I have woven pots coming out my ears but the functional stuff is gone. I also heard several patrons say ....... "thank you for getting your pottery out of the 70's". I heard it on Saturday and I heard it again on Sunday. Over the last 35 years of pots and all things pottery I have learned to be flexible and change up glazes and clay bodies but who knew people would that, out loud. I always felt hand thrown or handmade pottery was kind of timeless unlike the mass produced stuff which does go out of vogue.
Ohio Mart is an awesome show in every respect; from the organizers to the patrons to my whacky neighbors. Peggy sporting a new purse from the vintage tent :)
We have become friends over the last three years and it is always fun to "catch up".
I'm not saying I will never make another woven pot by any stretch but I think I will become more judicious about shows I commit to and at what time of the year. Curious to see if I get my Etsy store updated, will it become active as I do a few more shows?
I can't even believe I am still vacillating on these issues. I started with wisteria back in the day and it paid for my studio, kilns and trips to far off places while dragging my kids behind me.
I need to add a kiln room to the studio in the near future and I wouldn't mind a cover over the exposed outdoor work area.
Today I will unload a van full of muddy fixtures and wet canopy; hose down the rug and pedestals but first there is time for coffee on the patio and catch up time with a very much missed buddy, Kirby.