Wednesday, August 21, 2013

An Artist's Business Side

It's always startling to me how much paper and computer work is entailed in running the business end for an artist.  Class proposals and deadlines seem to loom constantly, which also require spreadsheets with breakdowns for actual travel costs, teaching and materials, shipping, etc.  Applications for shows have their own requirements and specific documentation.  When accepted, there is more paperwork, insurance, and shipping.

Updating business cards, brochures and postcards, while not a daily occurrence, do take quite a bit of time when they are needed (as I spent all yesterday morning doing).  Keeping an inventory of supplies and ordering in a timely manner is on-going.

Even in the design process I keep track of time, material, and the design itself for creating the pattern and updating my spreadsheets for class proposals.

Emails and Facebook take so very much time, but are necessary to stay in touch with students, collectors, and the basketry world in general.

Heavens, let's not forget the artist statements, artist bio, and resume that need to be constantly updated.

Teaching at my own studios requires advertising, class registrations, and reminders.

And all activity, sales and purchases, need to be posted into QuickBooks, including taxes reported and paid on time.  An on-going list of vendors and their pricing is ever changing.

But amazingly, at the end of the day, some weaving actually gets done!  After all, without the weaving, there would be no need at all for all the rest of it.  Is it all worth it?  Absolutely.

And to add a little twist to it all.....I've been asked to create a class for weaving teachers that includes all my spreadsheets for proposals and budgeting information, materials usage by basket, and really my business process to make sure it is all profitable.  Thankfully my left and right brains have created a working partnership in this.

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