Ask a craftsperson or artist what the least favorite part of what they do is, and they may very well say business. Being in business is part of being in craft and art unless you are totally capable of funding all your materials and tools and have no concern for the rent.

So, since the business end funds so many activities, why is it the least favorite part of our creative activity? Well, there are the long hours of packing and transporting goods for shows—the unresponsive web developer. Then there is dealing with gallery and shop owners who try to outfox us on what is owed when a piece sells.

My rave is saved for boat show customers who claim they could carve that quarter board themselves, and the price is too high. After years of trying to deal with this politely and rationally, I learned to stop engaging with total idiots. A contentious potential client will only become a lousy payment issue later.

The polar opposite of the people who create issues are the customers who enjoy what you have made. These are the ones who run their hands over an eagle for the sheer joy of the tactile. They love the curve and balance of the cherry spoon and commission another portrait of their beloved sailboat for their son to enjoy.
What develops with people like these are feelings of appreciation and trust. These mutually shared feelings are a big part of why you create and are in business to start.

It’s nice to see a craft work fly off the table as a sale, but it’s also nice to see it go home with someone who loves it.

5 Replies to “business”

  1. Cat Daddy and I have bought a couple of pieces from an artist during our holiday. Although they were expensive and indulgent, it doesn’t feel wasteful (if you see what I mean). I’ll be blogging about the pieces when we get home, if Louis Catorze can manage not to mess them up.

  2. Louis, like Xenia and most cats consider themselves to be the ultimate arbiters of fine taste. We lesser creatures must simply standby and marvel.

    1. True. Some things really have no appropriate price. The cash received is not an exact compensation for the work done, so appreciation is the other component that completes the transaction and takes things beyond commodification.

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