Monday, November 1, 2010

I really wish I had made this!!! But I am feeling inspired just by looking at it. I like the idea of it. I think sometimes artists get tripped up by their material---they love it so much it gets in the way of the work. It happens in all three of my favorite mediums---Film, Glass and Fiber. The Trip up in film is complicated and I won't do my Soapbox Thing right now--suffice to say that the idea of the Red Carpet ruins 80% of films, from seedling to finish. Glass----it's the process. Glassblowers get drunk on process. To Make, To Make,To see the Hot glowing goo do what it does. And with fabric and fiber, it's the Sumptuousness of the whole affair. I have both Tattered Bits and 15 Yard Stacks of Fabric that I can barely touch because it is so beautiful. It's almost painful to cut into it. I do my best work with the ugly crummy stuff I practice on.

I have been away for a couple weeks, but I am back!! And I have made some decisions!

1. I was reading an Etsy post about pricing your work. So I sat down and did some REAL math. Labor, supplies. The upshot is---the collars cost $1200 retail, and the rings cost $750 retail. Ummmmm.....

Two choices: Dumb it down or stick to my guns, make them Finer and Better and more Beautiful. Price Accordingly.

I'm going after Price Accordingly. I have to. It's just Time. I became so worried about making a sale--with my glass especially ( I know I haven't shown much here, but I have been deciding where to go with it and it was a little painful to talk about), that I started lowering the price--and --oh my--the quality. That's not who I am. So--a recommitment to Quality, and I also--WOW--am going to ask for what pieces are worth from now on. And I think I need to think outside of Etsy. I can't compete with the pricing that people have there. I just can't!
Next: I need Deadlines!! Does anyone else want a Deadline? I am going to be handing out a Deadline Sometime in the Next Two weeks. If anyone else would like a Deadline---please ask---we can Share one. I need the Deadline.

So that is is for today--I am hopefully back again--barring any Apple Malfunctions!!



  1. ooh, perpetua! you raise some of the most important and difficult issues... the preciousness of the fabric (i am always wondering what to do with the tattered lovelies, i can only store so much)...

    and the dreaded pricing question. i'd love to know which article you read on etsy. i saw one associated with their holiday boot camp. you must must Stick to Your Guns - otherwise you'll end up compromising your work and probably not enjoying it... (and now i'm thinking i should get some of your work while the getting's good!)

    i'm sure you've seen that many artists end up creating smaller and more affordable pieces for etsy and saving their more expensive ones for commissions, galleries or boutiques... maybe it can be more like a "production line" than a dumbed-down version of your art. and keeping more pricey lovelies on etsy for advertising is good too. i've had more luck on etsy with vintage, but that takes time too, and time away.

    the scariest subject of all may be Deadlines... i could use one i'm sure, but i need to think on my goals first..

  2. I like the piece you featured, it makes me think of koi fish which I love.

    Would you mind if I did a blog post on your art and linked to your Etsy page and blog? I'd like to let people know about your lovely art.

    Speaking of art, I'd love to see how your Ann Boleyn piece is progressing if you feel like sharing. If it's still balding I don't mind waiting. : )

  3. Dru--the Etsy article was in an email via maybe Holiday Bootcamp? I get all these emails from them and don't read them, and then I went and read THAT one...I hear what you are saying about a production line item. But--and I am just debating--there is soooooo much out there of that. A lot on Etsy. And I just wonder how it will rate? You know--as you say, Time Away. I need to think a bit about that..

    Speaking of Goals---are you still hiding from your college advisor? :)
    I only think of it because that's just about how I handle things!

    Karla: Ms. Boleyn was put on hold---but I picked her up this morning and thought that she was actually quite lovely and I should start up again!! I will probably finish it just in time for --spring?

    Does anyone else ossicillate like that about projects? You work on it until you hate it, and then you see it cast off in the corner of your studio a month later and you like it again? What is that?

  4. the dreaded pricing really is a problem and selling yourself too short should never be an option, it devalues what you do. I think my work is underpriced but I am careful not to go too low. I would rather never sell than give my work away. I agree about etsy too, even though I'm on there some of the stuff is ridiculously cheap and those sellers devalue other makers too.

  5. Yes that's how I work on a lot of projects. Work at it until I never want to see it again and then take a break.

    Okay so your deadline is the 18th! I was looking at your flower neckcloth and I was thinking that I just really wanted to share your beautiful work. : )

    I'll look forward to seeing your new pieces. I'm really looking forward to your Boleyn piece, even just the beginning of it is lovely. I guess I can wait till Spring. : )

  6. Hi!
    Thanks for the comment on my blog. I love the "heavy icon" description for my keys....which probably are my second favorite symbol. Nails, however, especially old, rusted, used square ones, are my all-time most-cherished "heavy icon". I absolutely adore wrapping fibers around the hundreds.

    Anyway, this comment is attached to a very, very significant blog post. It includes several issues that I've wrestled with myself (like most artists!). My first solution was to NEVER get involved with Etsy. I could just see myself falling in the trap of wanting sales, like blog hits, so badly that I'd alter my work, sacrifice my quality, and end up in some production line sort of process creating faux-art that I didn't even like. That was actually about three or four years ago. I resisted....stuck it out....looked for something else. Finally, I got "proper" gallery representation about a year ago where I can honestly made work that I'm proud of, enjoy, and sell at an appropriate price. Please, hold out....make the work your were destined to make....the sales arena will come!

    About fabric....I finally don't buy anything that I don't already have an immediate use for! If I want to drool over the sumptuous bolts of special textures and designs, I browse....but don't buy. The stores are always there providing "eye candy". By resisting the temptation to purchase, I eliminate the feelings of guilt and the storage issue.

    The tattered bits of vintage linens that I do use generally just find their way to me.....people just give them away....sometimes as an anonymous gift outside my studio door. I've become a "drop off" place for all sorts of yarn, fabric, used clothing, etc. It's great....and free...and it feels so good to cut into these pieces and give them a chance at a new life as art. more thing....deadlines. They are easy to come by...especially while blogging. Put it in writing. Share it with the world. WORK, WORK, WORK! I need them too....and set goals/deadlines constantly. Working toward a goal is great motivation.

    Have you ever read Julia Cameron's "The Artist's Way"? It's a great book to overcome creative blocks and establish a natural, artistic lifestyle of fulfillment!