Archive for the 'making a living as a potter' Category

from Donna McGee: A Potter’s Saturday

Donna McGee's view on the road to GreenfieldOn the Road to Greenfield

Went to Greenfield for the 2nd’s sale, where many local potters unload imperfect work this time of year. Arranged to meet Jeanne Douillard in the parking lot, where I obtained bone ash, kaolin, Superpax, plaster, and cones for a song. Jane Foster brought me a Danish and Megan Hart a latte so I was all set! Tom White gave me some pots for Anglea Fina, so I called her and stopped by on the way back to my studio to drop them off. Beautiful results from Tom’s new kiln.


Pottery Tours and the Effect on the Local Economy

Thinking about how our pottery trail has been a great asset for our local economy, and how the many pottery tours around the country do the same.   I just spoke to Mary Barringer who is part of our pottery trail here and has been an invited guest to Bob Briscoe’s studio for many years on the St. Croix Pottery tour. She mentioned how much money that tour brings in on sales each year…way more than ours!  (The St. Croix Pottery Tour is in it’s 18th year.)  Our pottery trail is only in its 6th year and is doing very well.

A few days after our pottery trail I wrote a letter to the editor in our local newspaper.  I just thought I’d share it here.  I think as artist/potters it is important that we let our local officials, and the common citizen know what artists bring to our economy.

When we think of our local economy, we all have our thoughts and ideas about what will sustain and support our lives here. As an artist and firm believer in buying local, I am happy to share one of the ways a group of potters contributes to our local economy.

This weekend of April 24-25 was the 6th annual Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail.  We would like to thank all of the locals who attended our studios.  As the years go by we have also attracted more and more visitors from afar. They come to see the many nationally recognized potters on the tour… and they also come for a weekend getaway to this beautiful valley. This year’s tour was by far the most well attended.  Hundreds of visitors came for the day, or stayed for the weekend. Visitors came from Boston, Worcester, Springfield, and from NY, NJ, CT, VT, NH, ME, PA, spending nearly $40,000 in two days at the 10 studios.

As a group of artists we are proud to bring so many visitors to the Pioneer Valley.  Not only did these visitors spend their dollars supporting local artists, they also supported our local B&B’s, hotels, restaurants and shops.

We look forward to many more years and the ever-growing popularity of this local cultural event, which celebrates the enormous talent of our Valley’s artists.

So, if you missed the tour this year, come for a visit next April and discover one of the areas most precious “local resources”, its artists.

To find out more about our tour, visit our website:

Lucy Fagella- Greenfield, and all the potters on the tour

Tiffany Hilton- Greenfield, Tom White- Northfield, Molly Cantor- Shelburne Falls, Mary Barringer-Shelburne Falls, Steve Earp- Shelburne Falls, Donna McGee- Hadley, Angela Fina- Amherst, Francine Ozereko- Pelham, Michael Cohen- Pelham


Merchant services

I have been paying 5% for charge card transactions!!!
(Elavon)  {Wachovia Bank}
Last week I get a letter (from Elavon) saying that I have to meet “Payment  Card Industry -Data Security Standards” $299.- per year! They imply it’s mandatory. $20.- per month if you don’t comply by November. Plus all the extra little charges.

I have an old sliding “knuckle buster” and I call in charges on my phone.
I do only $7000. per year in charges. Half is with stores, the other half, three little local shows.
Have any of you come up against this PCI-DSS?
Should I drop this company and find another?
Some companies advertise “low fees, free equipment, etc.”

Any suggestions?  anyone? anyone? Bueller?
posted by Michael Cohen

$$ and being a Potter

Even though I wouldn’t trade being a potter for anything… sometimes you have to wonder how do we make a living??

I did a dinnerware set from start to finish and calculated the hours it took to make… check it out on my blog… lucy fagella pottery.