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Member Since 08 Apr 2010
Online Last Active Today, 06:35 PM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Members With Etsy Stores?

Today, 08:19 AM

I've always found John Baymore to have the most insightful perspective on this subject. And he expresses without putting the less than art less than 100% handmade down. I really think he should establish some classification scheme. He should put us all into categories. Lots to be learned from different groups but a classification would facilitate that. I would like to know exactly where I fit into all of this.

Yes, John brings a very well-thought-out perspective, and his thoughts are important. However, this forum should not be trying to put people into categories. I believe that every successful artist and/or business person is charged with defining themselves. Then living up to their own standards with integrity. No one gets to decide that for anyone else. All of us who are seeking income from our work fall somewhere between art and manufacturing. It doesn't matter where. The differing points of view are great! I think many art communities (online and otherwise) suffer from a lack of differing perspectives, sheltering themselves to their own detriment. I don't want anyone to leave this forum because they felt like they were being categorized.

Although I do think it's appropriate to use the term "Baymore standard." But what I understood about John's words is that the Baymore standard is not about the degree of handmade-ness. It means "do things the way you think is right, then be honest about it to your customers."

In Topic: Members With Etsy Stores?

Yesterday, 10:10 AM

As to Amazon trying to jury in truly handmade ... Good Luck to them. I was a jury member for a website trying to do this and it was a nightmare. Every single tiny niche of the craft world fights for its own definition of hand made and trying to place a line somewhere is impossible. Last one in wants to lock the door on anyone who is different.

I don't know, my early prediction for Amazon is that they will succeed at this. I do believe it is possible to define guidelines for what is considered "handmade." Not that it will be easy, but Amazon might be smart enough to do it. In the experience you describe, it sounds like there were too many artists involved in the deciding. Self-interest can be removed from the situation. My question is, do they want to? They might eventually decide there's not much money to be made here.

In Topic: Members With Etsy Stores?

Yesterday, 09:18 AM


I'm really glad you chimed in on this thread. You gave us a view of Etsy that most of us haven't seen. I still think that grype's depictions are more realistic. However, the same can be said for those who choose the art festival route. The majority of festival potters are making a side income, alongside another job or a supportive spouse. Only the exceptional few are rocking out the big incomes.

My personal feelings about slip casting ... if someone is designing their own forms, then slip casts the heck out of them to generate more volume, I'm all for it! I do have a problem with someone who purchases molds that somebody else designed, then refers to it as "my work." It's not their own work. If they are doing a great job with surface treatments, that's another subject altogether, and they should call themselves "illustrators" rather than pot makers. There is nothing wrong with calling oneself an illustrator. It is a worthy profession of its own, one that most potters have no clue about. I just don't want that type of work to be confused with those of us who are developing forms, and dealing with a much bigger universe of technical issues. At the same time, I am realistic enough to understand that most consumers do not care about these differences, and I shouldn't expect them to. So my approach is to choose venues where I don't directly compete with anything other than strictly handmade.

Lorrie if you feel like people look down on you for slip casting, just know that this type of judgyness happens at all levels of the craft world. These days I do some shows where I'm pretty sure other ceramists are upset that I brought so many items under $100, because they were hoping the show would contain nothing but collector-level Art pieces with a capital A. We are all somewhere on the same spectrum.

I heard that Amazon was launching a competitor to Etsy, with a stricter definition of handmade. I'm very curious to watch how it goes. I sort-of understand why Etsy went down a path towards mass-produced and imported goods. The strictly handmade economy probably wasn't big enough to sustain them or their ambitions. Amazon, on the other hand, can probably afford to subsidize a strictly handmade venture. But will that make sense for them in the long term?

(ps, I'm adding this thread to the FAQ section about online selling. Lots of great info here, and lots of differing perspectives, all valuable.)

In Topic: Lessons From Another Potter

26 June 2015 - 08:26 AM

This type of punmaking doesn't constitute "derailment" to me. It's funny and smart, and related to the topic. Derailment is more like changing the subject altogether, or personal oversharing. 

In Topic: The Potter's Cast, Episode 119. Featuring Me!

18 June 2015 - 08:28 PM

that is what i did.  i listened (without seeing anything) for 2.36 minutes to two commercials.  never saw anything.  left.  just tried it again and nothing.  i think i will go out to the studio and bash some clay around.

It's just an audio recording ... no video to see. After the two commercials, you'll hear a few minutes of the host, Paul Blais, making some announcements. Then my interview comes after that. The whole thing is about an hour, so make you have a free hour to listen before you start.