December is not my favourite time of the year. The short days and all too often leaden skies do nothing for my humour. I long for the turn of the year when the days start to lengthen again. I suppose it’s a bit silly to be hurrying my days away at my age.
I haven’t been making much lately as a good stock of work has built up over the summer. It is not easy to sell work in Ireland at present. Ireland does not have the population of informed buyers that one finds in the U.K for example. I exhibited in several good venues recently and the results were disappointing. Neither my slipware nor my teawares are in the fashion. Everywhere I look I see white porcelain and pastel colours. But you have got to make what makes your heart sing. Otherwise I see little point on getting up on the wheel.
Over the coming weeks I will begin to formulate a plan for 2016. Perhaps I will makes less and concentrate my efforts in coming up with a stock of ‘gallery’ pieces. I have never been comfortable with the gallery market. This market usually means added expense of travel, promotion, packing, stiff commissions etc and often a lengthy wait for your pay. Often it does not stand up to financial scrutiny. I must say that the gallery owners I know are motivated by a passion for the work they promote and I suspect it is even as hard for them to make ends meet as it is for the maker.
On Thursday next I wlll be showing work in a pop-up shop in town. A collective of local craftspersons has been doing this every Christmas for some years now and is usually well supported. It provides a good opportunity to reduce the stock and make room for 2016.
P.S. Having read over this post I want to reassure my friends that I am not at all depressed. On the contrary I am very positive about the potential of the coming year. It is the very unpredictability of pottery that keeps me engaged and challenged.