I just finished reading a thread from a few months ago and it came up again why folks like me do not use their full names.
Just a word why I'm just Stephen. First off I am not doing this to not have accountability for what I say. I truly do try with every single of the few hundred post I've made to be respectful, kind and hopefully helpful in some way.
I also do my very best to not post about things I don't know about, or at least I think I know about. Since I'm just a struggling novice five year potter that means its usually about business (since I ran a smallish non-pottery business for a decade) and equipment which I have spent waaay to much $$ on and did research on and have some studio time with.
I am a 55 year old computer programmer and Stephen is my real name. I am married to the most wonderful and talented artist who has been making beautiful work for going on twenty years and five years ago now we embarked on making pottery not just her serious hobby but our livelihoods. Actually earning a living making and selling pottery. She quit a dozen year graphic design gig three years ago and I left my 10 year programming job last July. Its been a daunting task that we are committed too.
This is an industry forum where thousands and thousands of both amateurs AND world renown professional potters interact daily, either directly or by reading. The lurkers probably include many, many serious heavy hitters and many of the ones that do give their names are department heads at prestigious educational institutions, pros with 30, 40 year artist careers, teachers with decades of helping students realize their talent and everything in between.
I have struggled often with putting the rest of my info here. Once I do that that it is no longer is just Stephen tossing in his two cents on a subject or asking for help with freely given background.
...but Stephen Doe with ABC Pottery, married to artist Jane Doe.
I know it may seem like an easy thing to do but WOW. Now anytime someone surfs on our little pottery or one of us up come my post. Did I say it right? Did I come off as a moron, arrogant, obnoxious, smug etc?
I mean really, me even talking in the conversation with this group on the surface is silly and humbling. I seriously don't even know if I could really participate if I had to justify my right to with my identity because in reality If I was in a room with most of you I would simply be humbled, respectful and most of all quiet.