Hi Lisa -
One thing that has always benefitted me in dealing with the "hard"
stuff (that doesn’t just “go away”!) is to deal with it promptily.
So, in other words . . . once, I walked into a shop where my work was
strewn around and I couldn’t even find it to take inventory - and it
also taken off my identifying cards and placed by someone else’s work
with their name linked to it. Well, I wasn’t a happy camper, but I
just very calmly said something to the manager - who then changed how
it was arranged. They were no doubt using "their’ creativity in
arranging things in the shop - but I noticed a marked change in sales
when the work was together and zippo sales when it was lost in the
shuffle. It was actually beneficial to both of us to change the
arrangement - but she wasn’t aware of how it directly affected my
sales (btw - the work was on consignment). These types of problems
are never something I “feel” comfortable with - but speaking up and
"tackling’ the problems as they come up does create change and
facilitate moving on. So, I definitely have found that it is to my
benefit to communicate and actually, it is essential . . . and I am
actually getting a little better at speaking up now! Another option
is to get a sales rep who handles those types of problems.
Once, I had an appointment at a gallery shop in SF, when I was on a
trip - and the buyer was interested in my work (on consignment) and I
was interested in the shop - until he opened a closed cabinet that had
LOTS of very nice consignment jewelry work in it. My immediate
feeling was - I’m not so sure I want to be in this gallery unless I
know that the work will be shown. At that time, I decided that I
would be better to create a time frame for trying a new shop and see
how sales go - not leave it open ended. If they want to purchase work
wholesale and do whatever rotation works for their shop - then,
perhaps that would have been okay - however, I would have liked to
have known their pattern - because of sending customers to find things
at a particular shop. What actually happened in that case was that
the shop closed before the time frame for when they wanted my work
(on consignment) - but i was getting my “ducks in a row” to be
prepared with questions of my concerns and to have it in a contract.
Back in October this year, there were a few strings on Orchid titled,
“Creative Block” and “New Life and Aritist’s Way” - that you might
enjoy looking up if you missed them. I think you would find the info
in those responses of interest. We are all different, but I know that
for myself, the process of working with the book, “The Artists Way” by
Julia Cameron has been very beneficial in helping me to recapture the
joy of our multidimensional work - and to find avenues that are
I think that in time - we get better at understanding the workings of
the business world and can move through it with a little more grace
and ease. I really liked A. Austin’s reply for your question. The
copying issue for sure comes with our territory - and his answer was
great. It does take time to heal and move through these experiences.
Connecting with other artists is very helpful and even just knowing
that the norm is what he described - is very helpful . . . it doesn’t
make it acceptable. But bottom line is to go back to being
"genuinely" free of the difficulties along the way and keep moving.
This forum has been great in providing a better understanding for the
many problems of our medium -the technical, business and also those
at a personal level - and to me, hearing the insights of others’
experiences helps a lot!
Aloha, Cynthia @Cynthia_Wiig