Ceramics as a Vocation

Ceramics as a Vocation

The Ceramics Business is Hard Work

As I mentioned in a previous blog, my wife has a friend who has been making and selling ceramics for many years. She is successful to the point where my wife was intrigued by the thought of her and me learning the trade and traveling to ceramic shows to sell our creations after my retirement from my regular job.

We worked with my wife’s friend for a while in an attempt to learn the business. However, after awhile it became obvious we were holding up her production to the point where we were hurting her business. It became obvious to us that this is not a vocation that you simply jump into, learn all about, and start ginning out beautiful, utilitarian pieces of ceramics for sale.

We learned that we lacked development of our creative ability. If we do ,in fact, have creative ability, it takes awhile to develop it.

During the months we worked weekends with my wife’s friend, we worked our butts off. We were sore all over from handling wet clay, using force to center it and hunching over the wheel, and lifting endless pieces to fire and then store them. We attended several ceramic shows and saw right away we would need a van or pick-up to haul the large, heavy pieces around. The loading and unloading of pottery was difficult for people our age who haven’t developed the necessary muscles over years of production.

We were particularly struck by the number of pieces that she produced and then rejected as unworthy for sale. All that work for nothing.

We are now participating in ceramic courses at our local community college and we intend to continue to throw and fire ceramics, but only as a hobby. We’ll do it on our schedule, a piece at a time and enjoy the pleasure it gives us.