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S. Dean

Member Since 18 Jun 2013
Offline Last Active Today, 08:13 AM

#89175 " What Makes A Teabowl A Chawan" << John Baymore's N C E...

Posted by S. Dean on 19 July 2015 - 06:04 PM

I like the concept that there is room for creativity within the boundaries of structure.   Very much enjoyed the power point and how actual tea bowls morphed into drawings of the different shapes.  Well done and a well spent half hour.



#89138 Square's Capital Lending Program

Posted by S. Dean on 19 July 2015 - 05:40 AM

^ It looks absolutely horrible.   If you get an advance of $4500, you pay 13% of card sales, paying back $5152.    Apparently they just automatically deduct 13% of your card sales until you have paid it back.  So I read it wrong.   $652 in interest.    So ... eeeek 14.5% interest.  I'm surprised they are doing this.



Dirt Roads,


The cost for this loan is a fixed fee not an annual interest rate, with the fee being the same whether you pay off the loan on day 1 or in 2 years.  The fee is typically between 10-14% of what you borrow.  Square then deducts a percentage (also 10-14%) from each subsequent credit card transaction until the loan and fee are paid in full. 


While in theory, it could take you 2 or more years to pay this back, per this article the pay back period is typically 10 months. 

http://www.techrepub...square-capital/  In that case, the effective cost of borrowing is at an annualized interest rate that is even higher than what you calculated. 


Square only makes this program available to certain customers - i.e., they run the analytics and know your credit card transaction history/how fast you will likely pay back the $.


Advantages seem to be ease/speed of getting a loan for businesses that cannot otherwise qualify for typical financing.  Capital funding, if you can get it, is always very expensive for higher risk borrowers.  


In my mind, some additional things to ponder for small businesses are:

1. Is your card set up through a business entity with limited liability (LLC, S-corp, C-corp, etc) or is the account in your individual name?

2. Does Square require a personal guarantee for the loan even if the answer to question 1 is that the borrower is a business with limited liability?

3. As the article says, you better know your sales margin.

4. What's in the fine print of the loan agreement?



#86937 Missing Pieces

Posted by S. Dean on 11 June 2015 - 08:10 AM

That bites.  At one of the community studios where I work, everyone is assigned a studio number which must be put on your pots.  Bisque and glaze items are unloaded directly to shelves located in a non-public area of the studio behind a centralized desk. Bisque is stored together in one area and glazed pieces in another area of shelves.  The shelves have number ranges which correspond to the studio numbers, so all your work is put in the same place and it is easy to see when your items are out of the kiln.  


The upside is nobody can walk in and take your stuff.  The downside is that it requires an on-duty attendant and having the studio number on your piece is a bit aggravating/clutters up the bottom of your pots  However, it greatly reduces the opportunities to take things which are not yours.  Perhaps something along these line might work for you.  


Good luck.



#81114 Buying A New Wheel! ^_^ Yes!

Posted by S. Dean on 09 May 2015 - 02:00 AM

I woud literally sell one of my kidneys on the black market for a de-airing pug mill. Santa is taking his time about it. :D

I wish pug mills made real pugs... ;)


Perhaps you could apply for a grant to purchase a mixer pug mill - your work and story are compelling. 

#78430 Dress Code Issues

Posted by S. Dean on 02 April 2015 - 06:05 AM

No problem Mark.  Ties and pipe were mandatory dress at the Issac Button pottery school.  (skip to 1:20 for attire, love the puff of smoke at 2:02) 


#78186 Basic Beginner Advice

Posted by S. Dean on 29 March 2015 - 07:07 PM

I'm not in the area, nor have I used them, but a quick web search turned up Forstall Art Center.  Per their website, they sell Highwter and Standard Clays, both of which make good products.  They also offer firing services, but you have to purchase the clay from them.  




Have fun!

#74360 Does Anyone Else...

Posted by S. Dean on 28 January 2015 - 08:31 PM

I was reading on this topic this morning and thought...glad I don't have that problem.  Then this afternoon in the studio, I rubbed my wrist a bit raw.  The forum jinxed me!!!  Then I noticed I was using type of bat I haven't used in a long time...the amaco black composite ones.  They are a bit on the rough side.


You are so right.  I've actually ground my fingernails down to tender skin when throwing a wide bottomless form on these plastic bats.  The textured side is just like sandpaper.



#72018 More Pit Fire Questions...

Posted by S. Dean on 17 December 2014 - 10:18 AM

Hard on the back to dig in frozen soil, I'm afraid. :'(


Build an "above ground pit" with cinder blocks and bricks.  Cover with a piece of sheet metal.


Here's a sawdust kiln video from Simon Leach


#71912 Food For Thought - E - Course!

Posted by S. Dean on 15 December 2014 - 11:33 AM

<snip> Meanwhile, ceramic Arts Daily has great videos every day....small segments from their DVD series. I learned several techniques like photo transfer and a fast embossed slip applicator from mylar wrapping paper.There are lots of topics presented by some of the top people in the field. If you have any road bumps, do some searching there. They are very informative.


+1  ... And maybe even buy the full video ......

#71286 Lettering On Clay

Posted by S. Dean on 05 December 2014 - 08:35 AM

Here's a timely video from CAD on using underglazes to enhance stamped areas



#70886 Critique - Worst You've Heard

Posted by S. Dean on 28 November 2014 - 09:29 AM

Very early in my career I had a customer tell me that they had  purchased one of my pots because they felt sad for it.  Funny though, it became one of her favorite pots through use.



#70774 Lets Do The Happy Dance

Posted by S. Dean on 26 November 2014 - 11:31 AM

Good plan Florence.  Happy Thanksgiving to you too!



#70765 To Sell Or Not To Sell? That Is The Question

Posted by S. Dean on 26 November 2014 - 08:39 AM

I still struggle with the age old, what to do with the kiln gems? Do I sell them for the same price, raise the price, save them for entering into shows, keep them, give them away, etc? I have done all these things. None seem to make sense to me. The best situation however has been someone bringing that kiln gem up to me and telling me how much they appreciate it, that they picked it out of all the other pots and know its a great pot. 


In my mind there is nothing wrong asking a premium for the special kiln gems (just the opposite of giving a discount for a second or not so special pot).  Fundamentally, price is the  amount that a seller is willing to accept and the buy is willing to pay in an exchange of goods and services.  


Although he no longer sells directly from his website, Steven Hill used to offer "reserve" pots which sold for more than the regular price of that pot.  Of course it helps when you have the talent and name recognition to be collectible.


In my mind, this pricing strategy should be applied only to really special pots and not to those that are just a tad better than others similar to it.  Otherwise the price structure will be confusing to customers.



#70762 Lets Do The Happy Dance

Posted by S. Dean on 26 November 2014 - 07:14 AM

Wow - a 102 mile round trip.  This must take you 2.5+ hours of non productive time once you factor in driving, set-up and clean-up.  You must be really motivated to do clay and not have any alternatives to this studio. 


My thoughts on community studios are if something unchangeable becomes unbearable to you, then its time to find another studio, build your own, or do something else.  Until then, you have to make the best of the studio you have. 


In that light, is there any way to turn the "kiln nazi" into an ally (or at least not an advesary). One possible way to do this is to appeal to her "superior knowledge" and seek out her advice before hand (approaching it from the starting point that your technique or pots are the problem).  You may have to bite on your tongue a bit, and it may take a while, but it could result in a workable truce with this person.


Dr. Myrtle offers some other good strategies and is also correct in that you can't love an individual pot.  In pottery there are too many opportunities for things to go wrong along the way, especially in a studio situation where you don't have control.


Good luck,