Every year I find August and September to be super busy with the need to be transforming clay into porcelain and every year I think I really should be more organised with this earlier in the year!
And this year is no exception as I’ve been knocked sideways with that stupid flu/bug that saps energy and hangs around for weeks. Fortunately it moved in with me after my dad moved out of hospital after a three week visit with his own bug. As dad is quite vulnerable to viruses and I have quite a built up immune system I think we had different bugs but both were way too willing to stay for way too long!
So now I’m pushing through, working away and going off for naps so I can at least argue that I’m looking after myself.
But what a normal explanation and experience this all is. While I might be focused on making porcelain jewellery in preparation for the Tasmanian Craft Fair and Christmas, I’m sure you are diligently working away on your projects that must be done so bills are paid and rents are covered.
The Realities of Planning Ahead
I had planned to be doing a lot of making through April-May-June but I realised now I ended up being very focused through this time on getting the first ranges of the greeting cards going and finding my initial stockists. While the cards have been much more successful than I’d originally hoped, I am now covered in clay making up for time spent elsewhere.
October and November will see me planning ahead for the coming year and it’s turned into a really important process that brings quite significant results – planning the coming 12 months – so I’ll need to take care to be sure to include the time needed for designing and making the cards as well as the transformation from clay to porcelain, the designing and testing of new ideas for the ceramic jewellery and figuring out what to have ready for the coming Christmas.
I’m not one of those huge fashion houses who design entire ranges 18 months out but I do need to get designing new pieces six month from Christmas so I can test them out and decide where to focus my efforts. I’m sure any small business has planning schedules like this that are important to look after.
Time to Think
All these sorts of thoughts ramble through my mind as I’m making. I find the process of working with clay, sanding and forming the pieces into little works of magic to be really therapeutic.
I do rouse on myself for putting pressure on the making time but really, that has more to do with fighting a bug at the same time that is slowing me down too much, leaving too much undone on the to do lists, than bad planning.
The way the mind will find topics to berate oneself with when it has time to wonder is quite amazing; I have paperwork to do, files to go through, stockists to call, porcelain to make, studio work calling out, housework that just keeps happening (or not) and the list goes on. The same as everyone else.
So when I have someone at market looking at me as if I live some blessed, creative, meaningful life that is always rosy in comparison to their 9-5 Monday to Friday job that doesn’t light them up, I feel like bringing them back to the home office and studio and sharing some of that rattling noisy to do list. And then I think how blessed I am to have a creative business that I find satisfying most of the time and get stuck back into my making and hoping I can actually get enough of that to do list sorted so it all stays together.
Tell Us What You Think?
What have you needed to stay focused on and make happen? How has it worked out?