Friday, November 25, 2011

Are you a serious business person?

At Etsy there is a thread about can I make enough only on Etsy? It caught my eye and I read the post. What stood out were the remarks mostly saying you need to do other things to attract buyers to your shop. This I really agree with and if you are not creating you are marketing.

Painted Wood Keepsake Box
Underlying the remarks was a sentiment that crafters (I dislike this description) can never make enough to support themselves unless there is a husband supporting the family or you. One, these statements were obviously made by women probably mothers and married. Making this generalized observation about crafts is simplifying the real business of creating handmade quality product and the average crafters is not serious about their work and this is why it is a craft. The creative artist is extremely serious and looks at their work as a business. Their quality highly different work overlooked because Etsy and other sites are being overrun by the I like to craft people. Not everyone at Etsy are in this category and many are serious artists and serious business people. It is impossible for Etsy to filter the not serious crafters from the serious artist.

Maybe it is up to the person to ask themselves if you are not serious than move aside and allow the serious artist show their work. There are church fairs and local outlets for those who just dabble. For some of us it is our livelihood and there is no one else picking up the tab and we could not be happier. This is our chosen profession and we work every day at our jobs. Having your own business is not for those that look at it as being part-time. Art is serious business and artist are serious business people.

So I ask you are you serious about being a creative artist or are you a part-time crafter?

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Anyone can be bullied.

How old were you when you experienced bullying? How long ago? Bullying can happen to any person at any age and when it happens to you it can be shattering, physically emotionally and spiritually. Growing up I never experienced bullying, yes the usual make fun of someone. Never with contempt and never with such negative energy yet just a few days ago for the first time I understand what bullying is.
As an artistic personality I was always told not to be too sensitive so artists learn to adapt. It is necessary to be sensitive for your art. To grow as an artist you must overcome criticism so you can learn and grow. Most artists develop a thick skinned sensibility. We balance our lives between the two worlds so I have never understood why someone would feel so abused and beaten to end their precious life. Until now.

My story started a few months back after being contacted by owners of a house I had sold them. They wanted to see if I wanted to buy the house. I loved the old place and said yes I was interested give me an asking price. I remembered them as a nice young couple, he was a lawyer and she now a mom. Weeks went on with him emailing me about how the house was poorly painted that he had to replace some painted light switch with great expense and so on and so on. Get the point and really a light switch. Remember I sold them the house so in fact he is criticizing my work as a designer and painter. All this he knew since I disclosed this when he bought the house. I had painted the entire inside of the house with Benjamin Moore paints and meticulously painted walls and woodwork. With every email he would chop away at the work I had done in the house knowing I had done it. I had left him the left over paints because they liked the work. Hum. Finally he sends me his ball bark price not firm or asking price along with what he thought were improvements. Did I mention he is a lawyer whose firm deals with real estate. I thought it was inflated and not close to being realistic. I told him my views about his improvements and hazy price as you would in any business email. Now the email's become insulting and venomous with strong hateful wording. Remember they approached me to buy the house. Interesting selling technique. I, no matter how much I loved the house, knew this was not a good purchase, not during this real estate market. I politely declined and felt bad about pulling away from the possible deal. Being the artist and person I am I offered a little advise. A critique if you wish about if they would like to sell their home at that price point they would be wise not to focus on paint and focus on upgrading kitchen counters and baths from the 80's. I wished him well and left it at that. Within hours he blasts back attacking my character my work my reputation with so much intensity it scared me. His words went on to  attacked old neighbors. Unfortunately my ego attacked back with a few carefully chosen words with the most intense calling him an insignificant lawyer. He countered again. I went silent.

I felt completely demoralized. My body ached. My spirit felt so heavy and dark. This is what happens when a dark energy attacks I am convinced now. I then thought, this is what a kid faces day after day? It is unimaginable and unacceptable. We as care givers of this world need to help and give those who are bullied a safe haven. I have years of learning under my wings supporting me and though extremely difficult I pulled myself out and into the light. Maybe you are a kid reading this or maybe an adult, a parent, living through an abusive situation, a bullying. What helped me was to see it for what it is, dark negative energy, it is not you. Whatever their words are is not you. You are a magnificent wonderful person created especially for one purpose and that is to live your life. Do your absolute best. Carry a light inside so the darkness can not enter. But more to the point tell someone and ask for help. Do not give up and let a bully a being of a lower energy win. I am here and there are many others also. Do not be embarrassed it is the bully who should be embarrassed. Shame on all who are abuser.   If you are being attacked by a bully and have no one email me. I can at least listen.

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