Wednesday, May 1, 2013


I made it home from Minnesota last Tuesday.  It was a harrowing journey through snow and rain until I hit Oklahoma.  I'm sad to say that the show was a bust.  I talked to a number of other potters at the show and I did much better than most, a rarity for me!  But still not even close to what I needed.  I'm in the hole quite a bit for the year, it's a difficult thing to talk about but that's the reality of the situation.  I'd like my blog to represent the ups and downs of the lifestyle.  I've never had a year like this, I've wracked my brain constantly trying to find a solution but I got nothin.  We just have to hope that this is the low end of the slump and we'll start working our way out. 

I was hell bent on getting out of town ASAP after the show but when I woke up Monday morning I knew that I'd kick myself if I didn't drop in on a couple people.  I headed out to Guillermo Cuellar's on Monday morning(no photos).  We had a good long talk and they invited me to stay for lunch, it was a good visit.  From there I headed to Linda Christianson's place.  Linda was in the midst of getting her kiln loaded in upper 20's weather.  That gal is as tough as they come.  There is also not a nicer person in existence.  We spent far too much time talking about kilns and such, I left with a few pots and a nice big jar of homemade maple syrup.  Needless to say stopping in to see them raised my spirits and helped me get my focus back. 

Me and the LC.

In other news I had a little mishap last week at school.  I tilted back a barrel of dry mix and popped my head in to see how much was left and it all shifted and poofed up in my face, I guess this was just a freak thing.  I didn't think much about it, it's happened before, no big deal.  Friday I felt really ill, kinda fluish.  Saturday and Sunday I was bed ridden with a cough, nasty fever, and crazy muscle aches.  A trip to the doc on Monday and she confirmed that I got myself a case of pneumonia from dust exposure, commonly called chemical pneumonia, the good part is that there is nothing contagious about it.  Seeing an x-ray with all that crap in your, shit gets real.  I always wear a respirator when I mix clay or glazes but there are times that I'm a bit cavalier like I'm sure most of us are.  I had no idea that pneumonia was a potential threat, and now that I've had it once I'm more likely to contract it again.  So I'm just going to have to be more safety conscious than I already am.  So this is lesson to me, and hopefully a heads up for you! 

Well, back to rest!



Sandy Miller said...

Back from Craft Boston during the bombing episode, it's one thing to bomb at a show another to get bombed during a show! Sunday morning the potters gathered in Bob's booth and lamented about paying bills, seeing cheap used equipment from other potters closing their studios and still no money to buy it. This year has many of us tested to the limits, one old potter said; we're at the bottom with two more ugly years ahead of us...... Interesting way he calculated this but after 45 years he's been down this road before. He advised hanging on to the cliff by your fingernails. Another potter said she was having a hard go of it so was making stuff she had been wanting to try for years and never had the time to do it. Most of us are living on rice and beans but not gone to cheap beer yet....... Me, I did ok, and grateful to come home with a lighter load than I went with. Gonna be a year. Headed up to the St Croix potters tour next week to see Bob Briscoe and fondle pots..... Peace out....

Tracey Broome said...

Luckily I like cheap ber, Sandy!
Brandon, I'm so glad you do post your ups and downs, as I have posted on my blog, my sales came to a screeching halt around October last year. It really bummed me out but thankfully other artists share their experiences on their blogs, and I don't feel so alone and feel like maybe it's not what I'm doing wrong since we are all having a similar year. You make some of the finest pots out there so knowing you had a rough show sort of puts this economy thing in perspective for me! I am keeping some of my more expensive items around but right now the under $20 crowd is keeping me from giving up all together. Like Sandy said, it does give me time to experiment and try some new things, not paying many bills though...ugh.
Thanks for the reminder of how dangerous our studios can be.
Also, yes Linda is one of the most interesting people I have ever met, I would vote for her for president!

Scott K Roberts said...

Woody Guthrie has a song called "Dust Pneumonia Blues" glad your ok.

Sue Pariseau Pottery said...

Sorry the show didn't got better. I did my part, spreading a little cash around to a few vendors. We're loving the bowls I bought from you there. Thanks. Glad you're on the mend.