As you can see, a lot has led up to the moment of showing the products at the markets. I don't keep track of my hours, but it's a LOT... At this point, we are really handing the power over to the buyers. I did what I could to create something unique and special for collectors, and now it's up to the folks that place the orders to show up on time. I'm not sure if they realize how critical their timing is. Production orders need to placed early in the year so that products can be made in time for their seasonal release. If too many buyers hold off and decide to place their orders later in the year, then there is a good chance that an item with a low, early-order count will never see production. Just because a piece made it to market or even made the catalog, does not promise that it will be available later. It most cases it will, but over the years, we've had frustrated store owners as well as the public contacting us, wanting to know why they cannot order a Halloween reproduction pictured in a catalog or pictured on social media. This is the reason. Either the early orders barely met the factory quota, so production was kept at a conservative low and pieces sold out quickly. Or, they just weren't met at all. So, to sum it up, we are so very grateful to buyers who place an early order! It really helps to ensure that our designs will be available once Halloween & the holidays roll in! Thank you Thank you Thank you (in advance! :)
Speaking of, some of you may have noticed that I have been sharing new product photos on social media (mostly Instagram) at the start of this year. I know some folks don't want to see Halloween & Christmas in January & February, and I've had my share of unfollows for it, but here's hoping it helps to remind our shop friends of what's new for this year and to consider placing their orders now.. We so appreciate it, and our collectors will thank you for it later!
With all that said, I've spelled out the steps from my experience to help explain the process from idea phase to tchotke shelf collection :) It takes about a year+ from initial sketch to product in hand. At that point, once the items are exiting stores, wrapped in tissue in shopping bags, the artist begins to receive royalties. So, it's not for the impatient at heart. It's a waiting game for all aspects, including the compensation part.
So, why do I do it? Well, we have built a hearty following for my collectible art. Our folk art originals, as special as they are, are just that. We can only make so many each year, and then a new year begins. They take countless hours to create, and each is unique. But, really, we're only reaching close to a hundred or so collectors each year that actually are in the right place at the right moment to adopt them. And, many thanks to those dedicated people! The rest of you who wish for a taste of our style in your home are eager (or so we hope) to snag a reproduction or two or more for your collection. That's where the licensed designs come into play. In this case, through licensing, we are now able to offer my designs in ceramics and other new mediums too! Typically the price is right, and although we may have to compromise on quality and detail, we can connect with so many more people through larger production. I know, that's pretty obvious, but sometimes I have to remind myself of the obvious. It's a choice that I continue to make because I have this innate drive to share my talents with you. Excuse my cheesiness, but it's true. Making art for myself and stashing it away feels incomplete. I have this need to connect the dots and fill the void. It's a lot of cyclical work, but we do find joy in your enthusiastic response! That in turn creates the momentum for the next round.