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Pres posted a topic in Int'l Ceramic Artists Network (ICAN) Operations and BenefitsLately, in the QotW pool, Evelyne asked: What does success mean to you? I find this to be a very difficult question. There are all sorts of success out there. I used to be that I would consider a day when I could get a piece of work off of the wheel that seemed reasonably well thrown, even though it might be a little off center, or have flat edges in the curves or would have proportions that were not quite right, or even thin rims or other areas. Later on it was the consistent small success just mentioned that extended into a day of those successes. Then came the day when those consistent successes seemed to not have those off tune minor defects that would detract from the overall satisfaction of the daily success. Now, as I look back on these "successes" I find that today a success is to throw, construct, combine or create forms that have the visual interest I am looking for in the surface, are creatively functional, and please my sense of design in form - well. To work on a series of teapots, chalices, or even simple apple bakers and feel that they are aesthetically and functionally in tune is a successful day. I realize that all so often the feeling is often thought of as in the amount of folding lettuce you hold in your fingers at the end of a show, or the big award of the show stopper that won first place, but for me, the little successes have sustained me in my joy of making pots much more than the cash flow has. I guess that is why I am not so much a professional potter, but more a hobbyist or teaching potter. best, Pres
Hi folks, This weeks Question of the Week comes from Diesel Clay up in Calgary, Canada. She asks: I have questions about resiliency, and getting back to work after various events that have either failed, or gone extremely well. How do you deal wth artistic setbacks, or get back to work after the high of an achievement? Please describe an instance of either. This is an interesting question, and was hard to put into a title, so I took a little creative license to come up with one that I think fits. For me, there have been several ups and downs with my work, but just one solution to get through it. . . keep on working. Part of working meant getting more aware of what I really liked in pottery I admired, choosing what I believed was relevant to my work, and integrating it into what I was doing. What were some of my set backs? In the 90's I had pots that were white with in-glaze decoration that used a lot of lace, and plant leaves with atomizer shading finished with brush strokes. I was using a white glaze that was eggshell. Some way or other I just completely lost the feeling for it, and couldn't decorate that way anymore. These pots were large jars, and not really functional ware, but decorative, and I sold a lot of them. My smaller ware-mugs, casseroles, bowls etc were using the same decoration and glazes. I found that they were not as durable as I had thought. At the time the larger pots were "canvases" for paintings and glossy surfaces made it harder to see the decoration. Should have used different glazes. So I left the whole idea behind going for other types of decoration. Worked for a long time on developing glazes that were durable and that I liked. Changing my approach completely. I you haven't posted a question in the pool, please, please do. It makes this job easier! best, Pres