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Hi All, I received some great advice from the members of this forum for my first Raku fire and wanted so show some of the results. If fired the kiln twice, once as a test with sample items and once with my work which was more successful. The video is of the second firing (although I did upload the first to YouTube as well, I learned a lot from it). It is not very long and shows the completed work at the end. I used a combination of glazes that I prepared from recipes from the internet and books as well as some pre-mixed Laguna glazes. I made the kiln from an old Paragon kiln I found for $50 off of a site similar to Craigslist. Again thanks for the great Raku Input. Ian Cook
8 years ago a purchased a "Paint your own Pottery" studio with the intention of expanding it into both painting pottery, and a clay studio with pottery wheels, demos, classes, etc. I thought it would be great to be able to make my own pieces, display and sell them in the studio, as well as have the usual clientelle who just came in to paint. But over the years I have been too busy working to get work done! haha. Payroll, bookkeeping, taxes, scheduling employees, working extra shifts, teaching classes, customer service, ordering supplies, etc... plus getting all of our customer's pottery fired and out on time has left me very little time for what I really wanted to do from the begining, which is my own work. Paying off student loans, business loans and rent and utilities for both my home and studio space has me working for almost nothing. Each month I pay my bills and that's about it. And it's become increasingly stressful and less enjoyable over time. So I have decided to sell the paint your own pottery business. I already have someone interested and we are awaiting the landlord's approval at the moment before moving further. I'm selling the business for how much I owe on it and am really happy to just be walking away debt free. Fresh start. I'd love to start up a little home studio. Work a "real" job part time, and make my own pieces part time. I have a small etsy shop currently and I have my first big art sale this September, and would love to start doing both regularly when I am able to produce more work. My question is this: Is having a home studio easier to opperate than a rented studio space? I know by downsizing I'll save on rent and utilities, and not having employees. But, otherwise, is the business basically the same? Insurance, licences and fees, taxes, bookkeeping... How much time do you spend on those vs making work? There is a little negative voice in the back of my mind saying all the things I stress about now are still going to be there. Maybe I have the pottery skills, but not the business skills. I just want pottery to be fun again! And to grow and get better. And maybe, just maybe, actually make a profit.
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