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growth & hope

Updated: Oct 14, 2020

Well, I am feeling very accomplished: I’ve totally revamped the site! The logo is an actual tile piece that Cal made, and I’m so happy with how it turned out in real life and on the website. I’ve developed the online shop, where it is now easier to order specific pieces. Right now, there are just over 100 listed. I stayed up until 6:00 AM one night, because I wanted them all to be posted in one night! It wasn‘t a chore, because I like staying up and working late, especially on projects I believe in and am passionate about. It was especially fun because I took the time to name each individual piece. This process was all about free association while being in a slightly dazed state and listening to ethereal music. I really enjoyed it, and I think the names really add a sense of uniqueness and wonder to the shop. Many of the names were inspired by songs I love, or my favorite television show: The Legend of Korra. I like to indulge in the fantasy of living in that universe... but anyway, I already look forward to the next round of posting and naming trinkle houses.

Something else I look forward to is starting our Art Fair experiment. We applied to our very first show, the Athens Farmer’s Market Holiday Market, happening on November 28th. The photo submission of our “booth” is shown above. We should hear back about our acceptance or denial in late October. For the past few days, however, we have been feeling pessimistic about this dream of ours. As Cal was crunching numbers, we were finding it very hard to have a sustainable venture in the art fair circuit. This is due to expensive booth fees, application fees, cost of travel, and materials to make the art. Due to Cal’s generous nature (and honestly, low self-esteem regarding the value of his work), his selling price for the work was very low... too low. I could tell he was undervaluing his work, but my pleas for him to realize this would often be unheaded, partly because he also in in love with the idea of giving things away. If Cal could have his way, money would be attached to nothing. People would give away things or services like how a child feeds a duck- the only motivation is to spread joy and connect with others, not some type of monitary contract. Unfortunately, this idea doesn’t bode well when trying to survive in a capitalist, money-oriented society.

This evening, Cal posted to the Facebook group, “Art Fair Lounge,” where artists all over the country post their experiences and questions about art fairs. He posted a lengthy paragraph, filled with estimated costs of attending an art fair (plus materials, etc.), which totaled to be around $800. Whew! With Cal’s undervalued sense of his art, it becomes very hard to make a profit in that world. Realizing this a couple days ago casted a little shadow of disappointment over us, but I think it hit Cal harder because he works so hard to make these delightful pieces. It’s only natural that we try to bargain our way out of this disappointment by posting to a Facebook group. The result? Hope. Nearly every person advised us to raise our prices, often exclaiming how much they love Cal’s work, and how deserving it was to be a part of an art fair. About 50 people joined in on this thread, and the message was clear and unanimous: “Cal, your art is wonderful, and you shouldn’t sell yourself short!” One of them even purchased one of the pieces from our brand new shop! It was a momentous occasion, and it feels like there’s a new spring in our step to help move us forward with this dream.

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