How Picky Are You? -

How Picky Are You?

This forum focuses on the artistic "why" and "what" more than the technical "how". Put more philosophical (but still art and glass related) posts here.

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Don Burt
Posts: 536
Joined: Sun Mar 09, 2003 8:45 pm
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio

Re: How Picky Are You?

Postby Don Burt » Sun Dec 16, 2007 1:07 pm

Brock wrote:If you are constantly trying new processes and methods, maybe 10% is normal.
Once you have established a method, your success rate should be much higher.

Even with established methods, or even if your final execution process is technically simple, you can spend a lot of time designing and rejecting design sketches and tests of colors and paints before you actually make a complete piece. I don't reject many final pieces. I reject lots of designs. The techniques I use have limits to the amount of rework I can do (adding and removing paint, subsequent firings etc) before I 'lose it', so perfectionism has its constraints.

I also recognize a trait in the business workplace and in crafts called the 'lazy perfectionist': folks that don't accomplish much because they never have the energy to get all their requirements in order, but they won't relax the requirements. They usually blame it on something other than their own behavior.

Cynthia O
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Nov 05, 2004 2:36 pm
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: How Picky Are You?

Postby Cynthia O » Sun Dec 16, 2007 2:20 pm

I find something lacking in every piece I do. Gone too far, not far enough....something is missing, that line is too bold, the light logic is all wrong, blah blah blah....

But I don't toss them either. I figure it's progress I'm after. I'll never get to perfection. Never. So I might as well accept the warts as long as I'm working to make them better.

Posts: 126
Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 2:25 pm
Location: Old Town, Tacoma, WA

Re: How Picky Are You?

Postby KaCe » Thu Jun 21, 2012 2:51 am

This thread is really old, but I find it very provocative. I seem to stymie myself with this whole topic of how good my pieces are before I offer them for sale. For that matter, when something isn't good in your mind do you break it and throw it away? Sell as a second? I argue with myself. I need to earn money to pay for the glass I'm using to make my work that I end up with, so selling the seconds might help... or does that degrade the work as a whole, because now you'd have what by your own admission is "seconds" out there with work you want to be known for? I can see the pluses of both and the negatives. I lean toward the destroy the inferior and perhaps repurpose it. But when money is as tight as mine is now I think that I should use the platter that is $40 in glass.

What do people do? Do you do a pot melt? Flatten it and slice it up into strips? Turn it into frit? I would love to hear how successful artists deal with the loss vs recovery of expenses. Must your work meet a certain standard in your mind? Or on paper... in other words do you have criteria that your work must meet to be considered "right for sale"? Perhaps that is more of a production question... but you get the idea, I think.

Just curious... KaCe, not George. :-)

Valerie Adams
Posts: 587
Joined: Mon Apr 19, 2004 2:49 pm
Location: Santa Rosa, California

Re: How Picky Are You?

Postby Valerie Adams » Thu Jun 21, 2012 11:37 am

I don't know that I'd label myself "a successful artist" but I'm having fun and selling enough work to keep me motivated to keep trying.

I've been fusing for a little over 10 years and in that time I've built up quite a bit of inventory. Last year my storage area reached the tipping point and I knew it was time to purge. I'd find myself at a show, sorting through my crates and only choosing the most current or favorite pieces to display. Deciding that it was costing me time and energy as well as valuable storage space, I decided to have a "once in a blue moon sale."

I pulled everything I was tired of seeing, set up a quick display in my studio, and sent an email blast to my mailing list. I included a few example pieces with prices and promoted "nothing over $40." For example, I sold 6" sushi trays for $5, 10" squares for $12, etc. I had nine storage crates and sold nearly every piece (of course, that means the few that didn't sell must've been REAL DUDS!). My average sale was $125.

I explained to customers (who asked) that now and then as an artist I get tired of pieces, or a color combination isn't as pleasing to me, or I create pieces that are experiments. I was sure to mention that it took me nine years to amass that much extra inventory so my sale wasn't going to be a regular gig. I accomplished what I set out to do: eliminated pieces I didn't love anymore, made plenty of room in my storage area, and recouped enough money to feel pretty good about it.

Laurie Saukko
Posts: 13
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 12:57 pm

Re: How Picky Are You?

Postby Laurie Saukko » Thu Jun 21, 2012 4:56 pm

I agree that you do get tired of seeing certain pieces. I find that I also choose to put out the new stuff...because that is what I am enamoured with currently! And of course, I want to make my display interesting and new for people that come and see me more often. I don't want it to become stale and boring. There is also the hope that you will also have created just the right thing that everybody will look at and want desperately! LOL
I have only been fusing for just under a year...and I pulled gobs of stuff this spring that I was embarassed that I had even offered up for sale last fall when I started. You learn alot in the first year. All of those embarassments become pot melts...I don't want to be reminded.

Posts: 126
Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 2:25 pm
Location: Old Town, Tacoma, WA

Re: How Picky Are You?

Postby KaCe » Fri Jun 22, 2012 8:47 pm

I like the approach of a studio sale... a rare event type thing. That makes sen$e. I also agree with the pot melt. It was good to hear how you handle that aspect of the art. I'm sure any artist in any media has a plethora of inventory. Now off you go to the store for more raw materials?


Ed Cantarella
Posts: 153
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2018 3:49 pm
Location: Highland, Michigan, USA

Re: How Picky Are You?

Postby Ed Cantarella » Sun May 13, 2018 10:19 am

I guess I'm a perfectionist - I never sell or show an item I don't find pleasing or that don't match my original vision. Potmelt or crushed to make casting which we give to children of friends. Sometimes one of those jewelry boxes (cast). Occasionally cut into pieces to save design elements or re-purpose but generally I find that irritating because I have to keep looking at the fail. I keep a few fails around to remind me of things not to do and not to get cocky with my DPH "speed". I do almost no commission work but I have sometimes repeated a vision several times before either succeeding or quitting in disgust. :arrow: Early in my years spent as a watchsmith I bought a piece I thought I would fix and sell, then decided it was beyond my capabilities. I set it aside and came back to it years later and it all worked out nicely. Technique can be learned, honed and improved upon as long as you are interested in doing so.
HER last words were, "I'm melting, melting . . . " Dissenting opinions generally welcome for comic relief or personal edification. Sometimes both.

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