Time Well Spent

March 5, 2012

I spent this weekend in a mall, working at my one of my jobs, which is selling the pottery my husband and I make in our studio.

It’s an unusual way to make a living: making and selling something.

Especially art.

Most people have a pretty clear idea what that’s all about. Much of the time those ideas are too romantic and glow-y to be real.

Part of selling pottery is to sell the pot’s story,  which is mostly our story.

The mystique of being a full time artist can be shattered by listing all the workaday mundane tasks that must be done every day.

There are two answers to that question—What inspires you?

1. My mortgage. That’s obvious, once we say it. What gets us in the studio? What compels us to put in 12-14 hour days day in and day out? Money, honey.

2. The other ‘real’ answer is the need to express something with clay. In our functional work we want to make something people use. Real people making something a real person will use. Potters, artists, put their heart and soul into each piece made and each item holds in it the life source, the life energy of the maker. And in our case, we make the mug or the bowl or the goblet for someone to hold and enjoy and we hope, make their life better.

It’s as simple as that.

Ahhh. But not so fast. We have to sell it in order for someone to use. That’s the other part of the equation.

So this weekend we packed up pots and went on the road in search of matches for our pots. “Single mug looking for that perfect person share a cup of coffee.”

When it works, it’s like magic. And we are a success. We make people happy.

It’s time well spent.