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#1 Lucille Oka

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 12:02 AM

Coke can't criticize Pepsi. Ralph Lauren can't criticize Betsy Johnson; Arnon Milchan can't criticize Quentin Tarantino, why? Because they are in the same businesses the critique cannot be trusted. Ergo potters can't criticize potters.
Notice how it doesn't sit well with potters. We can't take it, especially from each other. Many of us get jealous and angry at other's potential successes. We are all vying for the same pottery dollar.

In other venues such as movies, plays, art, books and restaurants the critics are not writing to the ‘makers’ of the ‘works’ but to the public. Not to say the maker’s will not read the reviews it affects their bottom lines; they most certainly do. But I will never ‘personally’ or ‘not personally’ accept a critique from competitors.




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#2 OffCenter

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 08:28 AM

Coke can't criticize Pepsi. Ralph Lauren can't criticize Betsy Johnson; Arnon Milchan can't criticize Quentin Tarantino, why? Because they are in the same businesses the critique cannot be trusted. Ergo potters can't criticize potters.
Notice how it doesn't sit well with potters. We can't take it, especially from each other. Many of us get jealous and angry at other's potential successes. We are all vying for the same pottery dollar.

In other venues such as movies, plays, art, books and restaurants the critics are not writing to the ‘makers’ of the ‘works’ but to the public. Not to say the maker’s will not read the reviews it affects their bottom lines; they most certainly do. But I will never ‘personally’ or ‘not personally’ accept a critique from competitors.


Pardon my bluntness but what a bunch of nonsense! It's not only nonsense, it's insulting. I'd wager that Tarantino is more interested in Milchan's critique of Pulp Fiction than he is of Roger Ebert's review even though Ebert's review has more effect on his bottom line. That's all writers groups do is sit around criticizing each others work in great detail. They are doing that to possibly learn something about their own work from people they respect and to help other writers. They have nothing in common with the relationship between Pepsi and Coke. WHEN ONE OF THEM HAS A PUBLISHING SUCCESS THEY THROW A PARTY, NOT A TANTRUM. Potters are the same way. When we fire the only anagama in middle Georgia a dozen or so potters come together to fire it and I don't think a single one of us is hoping our "competition's" pots come out looking bad. Last Spring for the biggest (or maybe second biggest) show in Georgia, one of my "competitor's" kiln broke down. I busted my ass to get her pots fired in my kilns in time for the show, even to the point of leaving a few of my pots out of the show. Recently, I have what may be a big break for me in that a collector who donated an incredibly beautiful collection of 807 pots to the Crocker Museum started a new collection by buying all of my anagama bottles. The first thing I did was introduce him to one of my "competitors" who makes better anagama pots than I do. I'm not bragging about being a nice guy; it's just that those are the examples that spring to mind and I don't know a single potter (except maybe you and, fortunately, I don't really know you) who wouldn't do the same thing for his/her "competition".

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#3 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 08:42 AM


Coke can't criticize Pepsi. Ralph Lauren can't criticize Betsy Johnson; Arnon Milchan can't criticize Quentin Tarantino, why? Because they are in the same businesses the critique cannot be trusted. Ergo potters can't criticize potters.
Notice how it doesn't sit well with potters. We can't take it, especially from each other. Many of us get jealous and angry at other's potential successes. We are all vying for the same pottery dollar.

In other venues such as movies, plays, art, books and restaurants the critics are not writing to the ‘makers’ of the ‘works’ but to the public. Not to say the maker’s will not read the reviews it affects their bottom lines; they most certainly do. But I will never ‘personally’ or ‘not personally’ accept a critique from competitors.


Pardon my bluntness but what a bunch of nonsense! It's not only nonsense, it's insulting. I'd wager that Tarantino is more interested in Milchan's critique of Pulp Fiction than he is of Roger Ebert's review even though Ebert's review has more effect on his bottom line. That's all writers groups do is sit around criticizing each others work in great detail. They are doing that to possibly learn something about their own work from people they respect and to help other writers. They have nothing in common with the relationship between Pepsi and Coke. WHEN ONE OF THEM HAS A PUBLISHING SUCCESS THEY THROW A PARTY, NOT A TANTRUM. Potters are the same way. When we fire the only anagama in middle Georgia a dozen or so potters come together to fire it and I don't think a single one of us is hoping our "competition's" pots come out looking bad. Last Spring for the biggest (or maybe second biggest) show in Georgia, one of my "competitor's" kiln broke down. I busted my ass to get her pots fired in my kilns in time for the show, even to the point of leaving a few of my pots out of the show. Recently, I have what may be a big break for me in that a collector who donated an incredibly beautiful collection of 807 pots to the Crocker Museum started a new collection by buying all of my anagama bottles. The first thing I did was introduce him to one of my "competitors" who makes better anagama pots than I do. I'm not bragging about being a nice guy; it's just that those are the examples that spring to mind and I don't know a single potter (except maybe you and, fortunately, I don't really know you) who wouldn't do the same thing for his/her "competition".

Jim

This is why Ceramics people have conferences and huge cooperative experiences. As I have said before ceramics poses many challenges keeping us humble and helpful to one another. That is the purpose of this forum as well.
Group firings are an excellent example of how this works.
Marcia




#4 trina

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 09:39 AM


Coke can't criticize Pepsi. Ralph Lauren can't criticize Betsy Johnson; Arnon Milchan can't criticize Quentin Tarantino, why? Because they are in the same businesses the critique cannot be trusted. Ergo potters can't criticize potters.
Notice how it doesn't sit well with potters. We can't take it, especially from each other. Many of us get jealous and angry at other's potential successes. We are all vying for the same pottery dollar.

In other venues such as movies, plays, art, books and restaurants the critics are not writing to the ‘makers’ of the ‘works’ but to the public. Not to say the maker’s will not read the reviews it affects their bottom lines; they most certainly do. But I will never ‘personally’ or ‘not personally’ accept a critique from competitors.


Pardon my bluntness but what a bunch of nonsense! It's not only nonsense, it's insulting. I'd wager that Tarantino is more interested in Milchan's critique of Pulp Fiction than he is of Roger Ebert's review even though Ebert's review has more effect on his bottom line. That's all writers groups do is sit around criticizing each others work in great detail. They are doing that to possibly learn something about their own work from people they respect and to help other writers. They have nothing in common with the relationship between Pepsi and Coke. WHEN ONE OF THEM HAS A PUBLISHING SUCCESS THEY THROW A PARTY, NOT A TANTRUM. Potters are the same way. When we fire the only anagama in middle Georgia a dozen or so potters come together to fire it and I don't think a single one of us is hoping our "competition's" pots come out looking bad. Last Spring for the biggest (or maybe second biggest) show in Georgia, one of my "competitor's" kiln broke down. I busted my ass to get her pots fired in my kilns in time for the show, even to the point of leaving a few of my pots out of the show. Recently, I have what may be a big break for me in that a collector who donated an incredibly beautiful collection of 807 pots to the Crocker Museum started a new collection by buying all of my anagama bottles. The first thing I did was introduce him to one of my "competitors" who makes better anagama pots than I do. I'm not bragging about being a nice guy; it's just that those are the examples that spring to mind and I don't know a single potter (except maybe you and, fortunately, I don't really know you) who wouldn't do the same thing for his/her "competition".

Jim


Jim,

Funny that you mention your anagama bottles. I love those bottles. I would pay money for those bottles, in a way I am jealous of those bottles. My husband on the other hand would say 'what! you're not paying money for those bottles, you can make them yourself.' You and I both know this is untrue. I could never make your beautiful bottles. Your artistic voice is in your bottles. In my book what I just made was for me true a 'comment'. But a comment none the less. Maybe you think it is Tupperware-ish I certainly hope not. If I disliked your bottles I simple would not mention them, my intention would not be to try to hurt you, why would I want to.
If you wanted a critique on your bottles, I am sure you would ask for one, and you would pick someone whom you respect and whom you thought would give you an honest opinion and someone with the best intentions for you. It only makes sense.

This is in no way directed at you but, I feel on this forum often people are critiqueing without being asked to and / or are making unnecessary rude comments.
T

#5 OffCenter

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:29 AM

"This is in no way directed at you but, I feel on this forum often people are critiqueing without being asked to and / or are making unnecessary rude comments."

You finally got your point through my thick skull and it has made an impression. Thanks.

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#6 Chris Campbell

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 11:05 AM

I also have to add that in my experience potters are the most sharing people I know. We share constantly with no expected return. You need to attend at least one NCECA or one Potters Council Conference to see for yourself that much of the down time is spent comparing notes and openly sharing.Many posters on this forum share their knowledge on a daily basis so how do they fit into your 'don't help the competition' scenario?

I have never heard a potter say they wished someone else would fail ... Never been at a pottery show where one potter would put down another's work to their customers.

Are there egos? Heck yes. But are we all to be judged by the lowest common denominator?

Frankly, we are not vying for the same pottery dollar ... That is one of the most prevalent misconceptions about pottery sales. Not only is there a huge variety of methods, glazes, forms, functions ... There is also a wide range of prices and a wide range of buyers with an even wider range of tastes. Let alone the fact that there are more potential buyers than any of us could supply if we worked at full tilt.

Not to accept a critique because you consider all other potters to be competitors seems a bit drastic. I choose whom I ask for critiques. If I want feedback on execution, I ask someone much better than me who has a good eye. If I want feedback on marketability, I ask a couple gallery owners I know who shoot from the hip and no, they don't carry my work because it would not sell in their shops. If I want general feedback I ask blunt people who say what they mean. I don't want nice words ... I want good feedback that I can build on.

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#7 GEP

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 11:13 AM

The potters who "can't take it" and are jealous of other potters' success are a very small minority. Most potters I know are not like that in any way.

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#8 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 11:57 AM

Most potters I know are helpful and sharing and fun to hang out with around a kiln firing.
Marcia

#9 Idaho Potter

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 07:45 PM

In my lives as an artist, I've found painters to be a little tight about sharing ideas and techniques. But wood carvers/sculptors can hardly contain themselves when they find a new tool, technique or type of wood--they spread the word as fast as possible. I've found potters to also be a sharing and caring group. If I'm having a problem with forming, glazing, firing--even depression--I go talk with another potter. If I have my doubts about a series I want to produce, I ask advice from my toughest critic because I don't want a pat on the back and a "Gee, it looks good" comment. I want to know "why" so I can adjust. I wouldn't be asking if I were certain I was on the right track.

It was not always possible for me to have personal feedback from other potters . I lived in a remote area where there weren't any other potters. Unless there was a summer art fair, I usually didn't meet other potters face-to-face. I wish these forums had been available back then. The amount of technical info and personal solutions that have been shared here are a boon to any potter--whether they interface by posting their own comments or not. Lack of contact with people of like minds and hearts can become dibilitating to any creative endeavor. Feedback is essential to moving your art/craft forward, and the more knowledgeable the source, the better.

I'm with the majority who have posted here. Even if the critique is formed around a kernel of jealousy, so what? That doesn't make it invalid, just slightly tainted. Most of us have been around long enough to recognize when someone is pulling your chain. So take the critique and apply it to your work. Does it fit? Is it pointing to something you've doubted yourself? Don't dismiss it out-of-hand, there may be a kernel of truth in it . . . you are the final filter.

Oh, yeah, unless you live in Boise, produce the exact same product, and sell it through the same outlets as mine, I don't think we are vying for the same pottery dollars. The variety is infinite.

#10 Lucille Oka

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Posted 12 July 2012 - 04:32 AM

Sorry I didn't respond right away I have been throwing and trimming.

What I hoped for in my ‘irritant’ post was a bit of self examination for us all. People are fragile more so than we can know; maybe not due only to our art but just in general, and for whatever reason. We never know which nerve we touch.


For those who are beginning potters who want to start selling just like any other product if the public likes it they will buy it if not, well…, just don't become discouraged keep working, keep trying, keep practicing techniques. The work will become better.

To IdahoPotter- as to competition, many potters feel that they are in competition maybe not you and not I but some do. And they respond from that feeling. I hope if they will critique please be aware of this emotion and force yourself to be objective.

To Marcia, everybody likes a party with friends; any kind of party.

I have to go clean up my trimmings now, goodnight everyone.


John 3:16
"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life".

#11 DAY

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Posted 12 July 2012 - 06:43 AM

[quote name='Lucille Oka' date='09 July 2012 - 12:02 AM' timestamp='1341810177' post='19085']
Coke can't criticize Pepsi. Ralph Lauren can't criticize Betsy Johnson; Arnon Milchan can't criticize Quentin Tarantino, why? Because they are in the same businesses the critique cannot be trusted. Ergo potters can't criticize potters.
Notice how it doesn't sit well with potters. We can't take it, especially from each other. Many of us get jealous and angry at other's potential successes. We are all vying for the same pottery dollar.

In other venues such as movies, plays, art, books and restaurants the critics are not writing to the ‘makers’ of the ‘works’ but to the public. Not to say the maker’s will not read the reviews it affects their bottom lines; they most certainly do. But I will never ‘personally’ or ‘not personally’ accept a critique from competitors.


“Fame is a jealous mistress

And will brook no rival.”

Thiruvalluvar, Kural


(He also wrote:

"Make foes of bowmen if you must,

Never of penmen.” )



#12 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 12 July 2012 - 09:06 AM

I have worked with potters around the world and found them to be ver sharing for the most part. There are divas in all walks of life I suppose.. Colleagues in other disciplines are jealous of the camaraderie within the ceramics community and wonder why there are not conventions of Painters like NCECA or the Potters Council's regional offerings.
Lucille, I tried to email you a message regarding how great your posts were in the What is it and to ask that you do more. Your forum email is not functional.
I really enjoyed what you started. And my comment about the category being "contemporary" was not aimed at you but to encourage exploration of historical aesthetics which are really important in Ceramics in my view.

Marcia

#13 Brandee Ross

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 07:07 AM

I also find most potters to be sharing, and this forum is a perfect example of that.

However, I did have the unpleasant experience at a recent art fair where another potter informed me that my work was not even considered pottery because I did not fire to cone 12 in a gas kiln (I fire cone 6 oxidation). He also talked about the "enormous amount of stupid customers and questions" he was getting at the show, and was generally rude and demeaning. Luckily he is the exception rather than the rule!

#14 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 08:56 AM

Gee...how'd the customers react to him? FWIW ^6 is just fine and real. And much greener than ^12
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#15 Marcia Selsor

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 08:56 AM

Gee...how'd the customers react to him? FWIW ^6 is just fine and real. And much greener than ^12
Marcia

#16 OffCenter

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 12:01 PM

I also find most potters to be sharing, and this forum is a perfect example of that.

However, I did have the unpleasant experience at a recent art fair where another potter informed me that my work was not even considered pottery because I did not fire to cone 12 in a gas kiln (I fire cone 6 oxidation). He also talked about the "enormous amount of stupid customers and questions" he was getting at the show, and was generally rude and demeaning. Luckily he is the exception rather than the rule!


It would make my day if some potter said something like that to me!

Jim
E pur si muove.

"But it does move," said Galileo under his breath.

#17 clay lover

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 07:08 PM

Those guys come in my booth occationally,, I usually say something like,"Yes, since I fire to ^6, I have to have alot more skill in glaze application, and glaze knowledge than you need to, to get the lovely surfaces you are looking at. Thanks so much for stopping by."

#18 Chris Campbell

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 09:20 AM

The competition for who is the most "real" potter is one that I am determined to win ... so I have decided to plant my own forest so by the time I build my own studio, wheel, kiln and shelves ... dig my own clay from a local river bank and process it ... mine and grind my own minerals and chemicals .... the forest will be mature enough for me to harvest enough wood to fire the work I will have made in my spare time. I will also be firing to at least Cone 20 so as to have the pleasure of hand chipping clay from shelves.:lol:

Ooops .... gotta edit since I realize this little lady is using a power tool and could not possibly be "real" enough ... Thanks John!! The second photo would be my operation.:D

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#19 JBaymore

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 10:02 AM

The competition for who is the most "real" potter is one that I am determined to win ... so I have decided to plant my own forest so by the time I build my own studio, wheel, kiln and shelves ... dig my own clay from a local river bank and process it ... mine and grind my own minerals and chemicals .... the forest will be mature enough for me to harvest enough wood to fire the work I will have made in my spare time. I will also be firing to at least Cone 20 so as to have the pleasure of hand chipping clay from shelves.:lol:



I'm sorry to tell you Chris, but Cone 28 is where it is all happening. And real potters do all of that construction work of studio, wheel, kiln, and shelves without the use of those corrupting influences: power tools. But keep at it..... in 2,000 years you might be getting close to acheiving this goal.

best,

.......................john :P ;)
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#20 Idaho Potter

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 02:24 AM

I love it when the "experts" let the rest of us know where we lack knowledge, talent, and artistry. I was giving a demo on using power tools at a carver's guild in Morro Bay (in my former life as a wood sculptor) and a heckler kept interrupting and saying that the only "pure carving tool was a knife and that power tools were cheating". After about the fifth time I told him that when he started mowing his lawn with a scythe, and his laundry was pounded on a rock, then I might listen to him. I also said that if Leanardo da Vinci had invented an air hammer, Michaelangelo would have used it. Why limit ourselves?

Chris, I don't think I'll still be around when you get that kiln up and working, so if you know someone who's been working on their forest for a long time, could you introduce me? I'll never be a "real potter", but I'd sure like to watch! Wait a minute--cone 28? Special clay, right? Am I supposed to dig it, too> Fahgitaboutit!




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