Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The brave and different

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.: Rudyard Kipling.
I’ve been giving a lot of thought lately to whether or not I have the guts to keep being brave and different as the sunset years approach me. I think I have for most of my life but when you stand alone and no one really has your back the easy route has certain appeals.
Whenever I go on about making work that is outside of the safety of the tribe my friend Barb Murphy chimes in with “ do some and some!”. I used to preach that very phrase learned from my wonderful teacher Mick Casson. I now don’t believe it. That works for the young but for us in what should be considered “Established Artist” category that is a cop out. The kids have been raised and are now out there earning more than we are.
I believe if you pick something up you have to put something down. I have had over the past 4 decades had many get rich schemes in the pottery bizz. Just stomp out these and all bills will be taken care of. Trouble is you find yourself devoted to stomping.

 As his student I was privy to the rest of Mick’s narrative. Who are you?  You want to be a stomper or do you want to be a presenter at the Aberystwyth Potter’s Festival, The North Carolina Potter’s Conference, The Alabama Potter’s Conference , The Potter’s Council, whatever, whatever? It is your narrative to write. Do you want to be brave and different or do you want to be part of the tribe? Whatever you decide it is your horse to ride. High ho , Silver and away! This post is dedicated to the itch I can’t scratch!

2 comments:

imagine said...

You and I will never be rich.
It is so easy to doubt yourself your ability and your goals when the bills come in.
Stay true to yourself Tony especially when it gets tough.
But if ever you decide to make commercial trash please get in touch as I am broke too.
It's hard to have integrity when things are tough.
But it is reading your Blog each day that gives me the courage and enthusiasm to continue at a time when quality has taken second place to fashion.
You are not alone but you are unique.

Tom Wirt said...

Me too. But NewClay Pottery is coming along. Back to the beginnings, potting in a garage. Thanks for the read and inspiration.