Art Work or Work and Art!
– this one is for the crafters and artists out there I get great pleasure from making glass, I would almost say I love it. The excitement as I open the kiln feels like opening a Christmas present every day. Waiting to see how things have turned out is really fun. I also go to some markets and art fairs where I can get direct feedback from my customers. These can be great fun sharing the experience with other artists and customers. However something keeps on nagging away at me: Should I make glass craft my full time job? This is a tough question and these are my thoughts on the advantages and disadvantages: The disadvantages: Security –I don’t want to give up an interesting, challenging role with a good employer and great colleagues. Also to be honest I am not a risk taker on the financial front. This does not mean that my hobby does not make money but many artists find it incredibly hard to make a living from their art alone. Only the few ever make any real money. Company - I enjoy the camaraderie with my work mates. Making glass all day in my studio alone would be ok for a while but not for ever. The advantages of working and crafting: Innovation –Leon Klune who is well-known writer said that having a steady income to pay the bills actually gives you the artistic freedom to create more daring pieces. These adventurous pieces are a great way to get your art or craft noticed help you develop an individual style. The mistakes can be learning experiences not financial disasters. Productivity – You will be amazed how much you can make. If you work 9 to 5 to pay the bills you have very limited time to waste. Procrastination is not an option when you only have an hour to make something. So you can actually be very productive. No time to waste watching rubbish TV. However if I don’t want to make something I don’t have to, the bills will still get paid. Planning – use your spare time. I have quite a long commute home and I car share so I often use this time to plan what I am going to make that evening. I can be daydreaming the miles away thinking and planning what I will make that evening. Inspiration - I have a “must make someday” list. Ideas and inspirations that I would love to make in glass go on that list and come from everywhere (including the day job). This list is excellent for those days when you are short on inspiration. Challenge – I do push myself take on new things and meet new people through crafting. I feel it has made me a more interesting person and a more relaxed one. The stresses of the day job melt away when I am concentrating on making glass Dual Benefits – There is lots that I have learned from crafting that really helps my day job. Examples are - web site set up, financial planning, communication. I did not expect this but it is making me look at my day job in a more strategic way and I feel I am making better business decisions So should I make craft my full time job? Now I think there are so many advantages to working and crafting that I don’t think I want to give up either. My plan for now is to continue to do both. If I pace myself, plan my time and enjoy the 2 different roles then why not? Denise - glass crafter / worker / multi tasker