Buyers are good, fans are great!
Posted October 04, 2016 in
A fan is someone who derives great pleasure from what you do or make. They see and seek to understand the smallest details of what goes into your process and design. They watch the evolution of your work with enthusiasm.
If you mention on social media that you are having a bad day, fans will console you with real feeling. If you are having a good day, they will celebrate with you. Nothing surprised me greater when I first started out than to see an actual fan base emerge. Studio artisans are, by nature, introverted souls who lead lives filled with great internal pleasure but sparse external flamboyance. We tend to think, "there's not a lot to see here, folks", even though that's not actually true.
As you may recall, I alternate my reclusive quiet with audiobooks. My current fav is outside my usual genre. It's in Sci Fi and Fantasy, titled Ready Player One. It's great fun, and exceptionally well written, but what essentially grabbed me is how it articulates perfectly what is means to be a fan.
Like the book's protagonist, I grew up in an unstable and neglectful home. In the 50's, there were no video games, no internet, and much less access to movies and shows, but we did have books, art museums, some notable filmmakers. And by my teens, the bands of the sixties! The best bands of any generation before or after. My home life was a mere backdrop for my real life, which was rich in female heroines struggling to assert our own power, creatives breaking the mold of conformity, and artworks that challenged minds and kindled passions.
Fans are blessed with the ability to transcend one's singular and individual circumstances. We are nurtured and fed by authors and artists and musicians as much as from our families and friends. A buyer wants a well made, functional, attractive piece of pottery, as a gift or a splurge for oneself. Sometimes that buyer feels the exquisite balance, notices the well placed foot rim, or the astonishing smile of a hand formed owl, and a fan is born. That is who I am working for.
If you are a fan, I get you! Me, too.