It’s been a long time, huh?
I intended to come back and finish that post that contained my best guesses about pricing. Really, I did. I figured, this being winter, I’d have plenty of time to get back around to it.
I’ve got lots of pots done in the meantime. Never enough, but lots.
And I’ve had a number of very flattering emails from folks kind enough to tell me that they read this blog, enjoy it, and wondering whether I’d be continuing with it. I’m honored that anyone would take the time to read my ramblings. Life is busy for everyone these days, and I know that my posts aren’t always quick reads.
Beyond that, I know this Is supposed to be a blog about pottery, but it ends up being full of stories about my dogs, my music, my sports analogies – everything but pottery. Nobody has complained. I may never have attracted many readers, but I attracted an uncommonly kind and encouraging group of readers.
But I think the main reason I never returned to the blog is that I knew I was getting pretty near the end of my life as a potter. As such, I couldn’t figure out a way to have much to say about the life I knew I was soon leaving behind.
I’ve tried to keep this blog fun, upbeat, sometimes funny (at least, as funny as I can make it), and an encouragement to the pottery world. It’s a great life we have, this creative life in clay. And though I can’t help but be aware of the discouraging aspects – an academic world that mostly discourages it, a cultural trend away from heirloom thinking, and just the general cussedness of clay, fire, and water that makes the results (AFTER all the hard work) nearly as often devastating as thrilling – I always wanted this blog to be a place where readers could suffer those discouragements, but still come here and read the reasons that make it worth carrying on.
And now, ironically, I find that I cannot.
The immediate plan is to find work. Dar and I will both be looking for work (we have dozens of applications already submitted). The best we can hope for at this point is a full time job at as much over minimum wage as I can find -- and a part time job in addition to that. Dar will also be looking for a part time job and manage the sales of whatever pots we have left in stock.
As soon as we find the jobs, we will be selling the house and pottery and trying to find a smaller and more efficient place to move into.
I’ll probably have to rent some space to store the pottery equipment in hopes that someday I may return to making pots. I could never again reaccumulate the kind of equipment I’ve amassed over 33 years.
Realistically, I doubt I’ll ever again make the same work I’ve been making. For one thing, I’m guessing that I’ll probably be looking into firing electric if I ever manage to set up a garage or basement studio. I’ll have lots of new ropes to learn if I ever get back to it – different glazes and clays, marketing that doesn’t involve travel, figuring out how to fire only on weekends or days off – all stuff that thousands of potters deal with every day (there’re probably more non-professional than professional potters). I admire the heck out of weekend and late night potters. I really do. It’s a level of commitment and energy that I’m not sure everyone is capable of. Salute!
I haven’t decided what to do with the blog – whether to carry on and share the adventure of my change of direction, or whether to just leave it up as an archive.
Anyway, it’s been a worthwhile venture, this blog. It put me in touch with a whole family of potters whom I would probably never have met otherwise, as they don’t do art fairs. I’ve enjoyed others' blogs as well, and enjoyed the times when the same idea would echo throughout the blogging world -- giving an enjoyable multifaceted view of an issue that could never have been gained any other way.
I’ve got several shows scheduled (all the way through July. October , if I include invitations), and that’s what I’ll be aiming for – make as much as I can at them -- until some job comes through for me -- at which point I’ll cancel the remainder of the schedule and begin the transition.
Thanks for reading! It’s been a pleasure.