I've been really productive the past few weeks. Habits are being formed and I'm back to spending at least one eight hour day in the studio a week. Perhaps when the work schedule permits I can adjust that to about 16 hours a week in the studio. Might not be feasible right now with my work schedule and my ongoing difficulties managing my sleep bank, (I need more deposits and less withdrawals), but I can see some light at the end of the tunnel.
I posted some new work in the shop last week and I have another bunch of items that should be posted shortly. I'm sticking with my goal of giving everything texture, and so far the result has been a rapid increase in my carving and augmenting skills. that makes me excited for what is to come. Went to dinner last night with one of my pottery mentors and she gave me sound feedback on my next goals. I always leave those conversations energized and excited about where this craft could lead me. I fantasize sometimes about a life where I can write, draw, and throw...but the reality is, there is a part of me that enjoys marketing and the challenges of my professional life and...I need that part of me to support myself financially, lol. I love them both, they are both valid parts of who I am. Yet...one always winds up suffering for the demands of the other. As I consider complicating my life even more in the future, I wonder how I can find enough time to have it all.
A friend of mine asked me today, "is pottery your hobby, or your business?" I told him it's not really either of those things. It brings me too much creative fulfillment and spiritual joy to be business....but it's too big a part of who I am (and who I'm becoming), to consider it a "hobby." I make it just enough of a business to cover the cost of my expenses and studio fees and my ability to share my work through various channels, but not so much that it loses it's magic...or it's healing, redemptive value. I take on commissions when I'm in the mood for them, then stop when I want to get back into total imagination mode. I wonder...why can't it be a business and still be my joy?
Round and round I go. So much more to learn, new challenges to face. I need to go back to putting my work in the local gallery, entering some competitions and taking some workshops. I can go back to the business of this, later.
I leave you with clay, a centerpiece bowl I threw this weekend.