Tag Archives: spoon

Baby Steps or Giant Leaps

I’m starting to emerge from my creative break. It is still a challenge to balance art and caring for my little ones, but I’m getting there. My biggest break through was realizing that it doesn’t matter if I only work for five minutes at a time. I meant to ease back into it, but I seem to have taken a giant leap. So far, I’ve started roughly 10 new pieces.

Here are a few of the ones I’ve recently finished.

LizardSpoon2015_Ckester1 OakNapkin_CKester1 PoppySpoon_Ckester_3

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Thoughts from a Meeting with the SBA and New Work

A couple of weeks ago I had a meeting with someone from the local Small Business Administration (SBA). I got a lot out of the meeting and would recommend that any artist who is having trouble with or just needs some advice on the business side of art give it a try. My meeting was specifically about writing a business plan. It is something you have to do if you want to get funding, but my goal  is to be able to provide myself with a road map with some clear goals.

I went in concerned that I was crazy to want to dive into a full-fledged craft business in a rocky economy. One of the first things that the counselor told me was that the art and craft market is a little different from other sales markets. In part, this is because people buy the connection with the artist as much as they are buying a unique item. So one suggestion she gave me is to make myself, not just my product, stand out.  A bad economy is not necessarily a bad time to start a craft business.  Planning and hard work can make it viable.

Another suggestion the counselor gave me was to go over my prices carefully.  She said artists and crafters tend to undervalue their time. I am certainly guilty of not tracking my time very well. It can be difficult to do when balancing working at home and caring for an exuberant young child. But I have started recording the time I sit down to work and the time I get up, even if only for a moment. It has been an eye opener.

Finally, the counselor gave me some great general advice on craft fairs. She said that each craft fair is a different market. What sells at one may not sell at another even if they are close geographically. It can take some trial and error to figure out what to bring to each fair. She also suggested bringing a portfolio of my work that includes items that I have sold or that I didn’t include in the fair. With this customers can see the full range of what I can do. If I advertise that I take commissions and do custom work, I may be able to get more sales.

My first craft fair is coming up soon (Applefest in Peru,NY on Sept 17 and 18). I hope that I can use what I have learned and make it a successful and enjoyable experience.

*****

As for new work, I have a lot of it. Here is a sample of some of my most recent.

copyright Christina Kester 2011

 

copyright Christina Kester 2011

 

copyright Christina Kester 2011

A Busy Bee

I have a lot going on right now, not the least of which is getting enough product together for a craft show. So, I apologize for my recent and continued (for a while longer) silence. Here are a few photos of some of my new work –

copyright 2011 Christina Kester

 

Copyright 2011 Christina Kester

copyright 2011 Christina Kester

 

copyright 2011 Christina Kester

Sketch Fest and New Work

Last weekend I participated in Sketch Fest for the first time.  Sketch Fest takes place once a month and is, as described on the site, a “24 hour creative jam session with artists across the world, brought to you by Ellen Million Graphics.”  The artists pick prompts and do a 1 hour sketch of the subject.

Here are the two sketches I did for it.

Prompt – Prehistoric Cave Art (sold)

copyright Christina Kester 2011

 

Prompt – Pocket Frog (for sale on the Sketch Fest website)

copyright Christina Kester 2011

 

In other news, I have been doing a lot of pyrography this past month. Here is a look at my newest pieces. Most can be found for sale on my Art Fire shop here

copyright Christina Kester 2011

copyright Christina Kester 2011

copyright Christina Kester 2011

copyright Christina Kester 2011

copyright Christina Kester 2011

copyright Christina Kester 2011

copyright Christina Kester 2011

 

 

Yay for Studio Space

I’ve moved across the country. It was a stressful, but fun adventure. But because it was such a huge undertaking, my presence on the internet has been scarce.  I am finally to the point that I can post more regularly. I have been busy busy busy. I am still trying to find one of my art supplies boxes, but it hasn’t slowed me down too much.

Here’s a peek at what I am working on for pyrography.

copyright 2011 Christina Kester

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yay Spoons

I finished my first pyrography project last night. Pyrography on wood really makes the house smell cozy.

copyright Christina Kester 2010

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you like it and would like to buy it please check here.

It was a lot of fun and I cant wait to do more. I’m working on a bowl commission (I wont be showing pictures of that one right away, though) and two more spoons.  I have more bowls too. I’m open to custom work/commissions so feel free to e-mail me (fireoakstudio@gmail.com) if you are interested.