[Clayart] Pricing, why, and worth

Robert Harris robertgharris at gmail.com
Mon Jul 31 17:19:30 EDT 2017


Paul, that implies that a working artist basically isn't any more skilled
or produces anything more valuable than an amateur. You need to defend your
statement.

That sort of contention requires a whole hell of a lot of defense. Either
it means that art is easy - and you need to defend that contention. Or it
means that the only people who are hurt by amateur's underpricing their
work are those who are poor (and why should the rules of competition not
apply to them). Or alternatively it means that customers cannot recognize
good art. Another contention that deserves to be explained and defended.

On Mon, Jul 31, 2017 at 2:43 PM, Paul Gerhold <gerholdclay at gmail.com> wrote:

> You hurt others when you price your work at less than you would charge if
> you were making your living from your pottery.
>
> Paul
>
> Sent from my iPad
>
> > On Jul 31, 2017, at 11:51 AM, Deborah Thuman <debthuman at zianet.com>
> wrote:
> >
> > Why is easy. I have to create things. If I don’t, I become spiritually
> and emotionally constipated. Creating things is as critical to me as water.
> >
> > The pricing part is sort of easy. It’s a function of cost of materials
> and time necessary to make the item. This is fairly easy with regard to
> beads. A piece that was quick to make but I used semi-precious stones is
> going to be priced higher than a piece that took me several hours but is
> comprised of glass beads.
> >
> > Translating that to clay….. There’s the cost of the clay (pre-made or
> DIY), the cost of glaze (pre-made or DIY), the cost of propane to fire the
> kiln and overhead. In my case, the overhead is the cost of the kiln, the
> cost of tools, the cost of my website, annual dues to the Farmers & Craft
> Market and the $10 fee to set up each time I set up. My studio is at my
> home, so there’s no studio rent to consider.
> >
> > Worth is difficult. A friend has reminded me that not everyone can make
> what I make. Not everyone has the knack, the talent or the desire. If you
> come to me for legal advice and help, you’re buying my knowledge and
> experience. When I have my dental checkup, I’m paying for my dentist’s
> knowledge and experience.
> >
> > If you buy something I make, you are paying for my knowledge (I had to
> learn how to do it) and experience (next week’s pots will always be better
> than last week’s pots).
> >
> > Is my legal knowledge and experience worth more than my artistic
> knowledge and experience? It will cost you more for my legal assistance
> than for anything I make. But is the legal assistance worth more? Is
> staying out of prison worth more than a lidded container? It depends on who
> you ask. If you’re looking at potentially 9 years in prison for something
> you didn’t do (and there truly are a good number of innocent people in
> prison), my legal expertise is worth a whole lot more to you than my
> ability to make a nice mug. If you’re the victim of my client, you probably
> wish I would stick to art.
> >
> > Worth and value are different. Worth is what I paid for a bowl and mug.
> Value is the contentment I get when I use that bowl and mug. A piece of the
> maker’s soul is in that bowl and mug and I can feel that piece each time I
> use the bowl and mug. (Tracy Shea made the bowl and mug in case you were
> wondering.)
> >
> > We each decide the intrinsic value of our pieces when we price our
> pieces. When we price our work lower than the cost of materials, that’s
> when we hurt others. That’s what has to be avoided.
> >
> > Deb Thuman
> > debthuman at zianet.com
> > www.debthumanart.com
> >
> > Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which
> ones to keep.
> > Scott Adams
> >
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