Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Dangerous Line

I find I walk a fine and dangerous line with this blog.

I have not been at this business of craft for all that long. Less than four years selling my work. Yet I am sharing my experiences in a way that could be seen as giving advice. Actually I do give advice or even absolutes from time to time. How can I possibly be in a position to do this? Who do I think I am, anyway?

Part of why I started this blog was from my experiences in meeting with other artists in various settings. I found I was often sharing resources or experiences with others. Some were just starting out. So I could relate to the sense of being overwhelmed with so much to learn. Others had been in business for years, but wanted to know about something in my booth, or who I used to print postcards, or other such things. I was more than happy to share what I knew or had learned along the way.

This blog was a way to broaden that discussion. To share my travels with others in the hopes that they may learn some things as I do. From my mistakes as well as successes.

But, it could be that someone could read it and see it in a different light. For instance, my recent post about booth fees. My story was about what I had experienced with my work, in various settings. But it will not be the same story for everyone. What I hope, is that you the reader, will process this in light of your own situation. You may not even be selling your work. Voyeurs to the process are welcome, but be warned, it may be like making sausage at times! You may not want to really see what goes on behind the scenes!

Feel free to throw out with abandon any and every piece of advice that I offer that you think is wrong for you. If something makes you pause and think, great. Even if you never change your approach, you at least thought about what you were doing and why. And isn't that the most valuable thing we can do from time to time?

And finally, while I may be a neophyte in the business of craft, I am not new to the world of business. And some of what I have learned in other roles has been able to help me in this new arena. That is where I hope I can offer something in my stories and my advice. I am experiencing this through the filter of someone with an MBA and business experience. Not that an MBA is the be all and end all of anything. But, it is information.

Likewise, my observations about the creative process are really observations about my creative process. I share them because I know I struggled for years with this area. It took me a long time to feel freer to explore and trust the process. I hope by sharing my insights, you may be able to reflect upon your own experience.

I heard Roy Blunt, Jr. being interviewed on NPR the other day. He talked about how easy it is to get on our high horse from time to time. And he observed that sometimes what we need is the medium horse. That is where I try to speak from. Learning, but with enough experience to share and perhaps shed a little light. But by no means an expert. More than willing to hear other points of view. So feel free to disagree in the comments if you have a different point of view from what I have expressed. I want to learn from you as well in this trip. I hope you have a window seat.


Libby said...

I love the medium horse analogy. Roy Blunt Jr. cracks me up. In any case, I for one appreciate your honest and sharing posts. Information such as you've shared is hard to come by traditionally. And I love following your creative process as I struggle with my own.

Cat said...

I agree with Libby about learning from you. There have been alot of "aha" moments for me in reading your blog, even if I don't comment on them all.

And I do find myself telling others, "Judy Dunn said...".


Judy said...

Libby and Cat,

Thank you for the feedback. I do try to speak from "my truth", but I do need to try and be aware that my experience is not universal. I hope through comments and feedback some of what I experience can be balanced by the experiences of others. That it opens up a dialogue around some of those more difficult issues.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy your well-thought-out posts. They are substantial and thoughtful. Thanks for taking the time to share.

Judy said...

Thanks Frivolitea. The comments can be a good guidepost at times. But I am not so sure the voices of dissent are a quick to comment. Too bad, because they can be even more valuable sometimes.