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Member Since 08 Apr 2010
Offline Last Active Today, 10:27 PM

#109497 Online Marketplaces Vs Your Own Website

Posted by GEP on 27 June 2016 - 05:07 PM

Marcia, yes a link to an informational website is totally fine, as long as it is not accompanied by a "buy this" message. A link to an online store is automatically considered a "buy this" message. And it is OK to have a link to one's website and online store within your PROFILE and SIGNATURE, just not within the body of a post or comment. 

#108791 How Do You Price Your Work?

Posted by GEP on 15 June 2016 - 02:08 PM

I wrote a blog post about my approach to pricing:


The short answer is "success of the individual piece."

Nice pots!

#108640 Website Development, What Do You Use?

Posted by GEP on 13 June 2016 - 04:56 PM

I just had a warning from Safari when I tried to go to your website. I can bypass it. I like the distress mug.

I'm using Chrome on a Mac and get a warning for Callie's site too. Tried it a few times and got the same warning.
I just tested and I also get this alert.

Callie, I think I figured out the glitch. Your website loads with no error with the prefix "http". The error happens when one clicks the url in your signature, which has the prefix "https". "https" is for SSL secure servers, which I don't think weebly uses. Everyone's browsers are responding "hey that's not a secure server." So just edit the "s" out of your url.

#108442 Startup Cost

Posted by GEP on 08 June 2016 - 06:40 PM

Somebody gave me a free kiln, which I took as a sign that it was time for my own studio. As I recall, I gave myself a $5000 budget for everything else, and I spent most of it. I bought a wheel, slab roller, kiln vent, kiln furniture, tables, lots of shelving. I spent a lot on an electrician to install the kiln circuit, and punch a hole in my wall for the vent. I stocked up on glazemaking tools and raw materials.

Down the road I gave away the small free kiln and bought a larger one. Then later I bought a used pug mill, a second kiln, and a second wheel.

I did this in the basement of my house, so the space was essentially free. If you don't have available space at home, you need to factor in rent too.

Also, when I did this I still had another full-time occupation, so I didn't need the pottery studio to provide a livable income. If your pottery studio is your only income, you also need to have enough capital to live off until your pottery starts to make money, which could take a few years.

#108405 Qotw: What Would Be The Title Of A Clay Book Of Yours?

Posted by GEP on 08 June 2016 - 12:08 PM

The Joy of Working in the Clothes You Slept In

subtitle: Self-Employment for Artists

#108276 Graybeards 1St Sale

Posted by GEP on 06 June 2016 - 06:35 PM

Did you know that seasoned festival artists will have zero days sometimes, even at fancy shows? It's true! You have nothing to be embarrassed about. You had the courage to take this big step. I agree with Joseph that you should sit down and make notes about everything you learned. This will make a big difference for next time. But before you do that, put your feet up and have a drink!

#108254 Marbled Clay Pieces...pricing Question

Posted by GEP on 06 June 2016 - 12:44 PM

If you already tried 20% .... and they sold in a flash ... try 30%. Keeping nudging upwards until they stop selling. Then go back to the highest price where they still sold.

#108043 New Business Name

Posted by GEP on 02 June 2016 - 09:47 PM

Here's a thread from about a year ago, lots of folks revealed the genesis of their name. Lots of ways to approach it!


#107733 Research Says That The Bigger Your Signature On Your Art The More It Sells For

Posted by GEP on 29 May 2016 - 09:57 AM

Joseph, you could just ask them if they plan to use your bowls to display other work. If they say "yes," tell them they are welcome to purchase the bowls outright and they can do whatever they want with them. If they say "no" now they know that you expect them not to do that. Better to be proactive, rather than waiting to see what happens and having a dispute with them later.

#107709 Research Says That The Bigger Your Signature On Your Art The More It Sells For

Posted by GEP on 28 May 2016 - 02:33 PM

Remember that handmade pottery is a very small industry. The name Fireborn should be enough, because if someone googles "Fireborn Pottery" they will find you in no time.

Most of my pots are stamped with a tiny elephant, less than 1/4 inch. I've had customers who bought a pot in a gallery with no trace of my name attached, google "elephant pottery" and find me.

#107661 Giving Shoppers A Sense Of Scale

Posted by GEP on 27 May 2016 - 12:55 PM

This is just a matter of personal taste ... those other two lifestyle photos look professional, but are way too twee for me. I don't think they would impress my customers either. I prefer your more down-to-earth style. 

#107645 Giving Shoppers A Sense Of Scale

Posted by GEP on 27 May 2016 - 07:51 AM

Pugaboo, I think your latest photos will work. Good job! Though I do share Mark's concern about making sure it's clear which is the ONE item they are purchasing. If the other four photos in the listing are solo shots, that should do it. But also in the listing for the plate, I would crop the photo down so we can't see the entire mug and bowl, but rather we only see slices of the mug/bowl/silverware on the edges. Just like how a sliver of bread plate appears in the background of the mug photo. The scale seems very clear to me, I think you solved that problem well.

#107415 Qotw: Do You Have A Story For Us, Featuring Tom Roberts (Aka Tjr) ?

Posted by GEP on 24 May 2016 - 08:12 AM

Oh my goodness. I had no idea he was ill. What a major loss for the forum, he was an excellent contributor from nearly the beginning. I wish I could have met him in person.

My "story" about Tom is that everytime I "liked" one of his comments, he sent me a PM thanking me for the like. He did not take anything for granted.

#106759 Giving Shoppers A Sense Of Scale

Posted by GEP on 12 May 2016 - 09:51 AM

This discussion is reminding me why I decided to severly limit my online sales. So much extra work. So many opportunities for miscommunication.

#106707 The Art Festival Plan

Posted by GEP on 11 May 2016 - 04:22 PM

It's finally done. The last installment of The Art Festival Plan is now on my blog. This one is about branding, marketing, and salesmanship. 


Warning: it is a long blog post. There was a lot to cover. So carve out some time to read it, and enjoy!