I got back from a week in warm Philadelphia this past Tuesday. Laura was going to the Buyers Market of American Craft which is a wholesale trade show of hand-made crafts. I was there to help her set up her booth and help assist buyers during the show and then help her break down the booth at the end. The set up and break down all went fine and dandy, but the assisting with buyers wasn't so hot. There just weren't that many buyers there. By the end of the second day we noticed that very few buyers we coming from anywhere other than the states right next to PA. It seems they weren't even making the trip to Philly, let alone ordering pieces.
Despite the horror stories I heard this past week, we didn't go home empty handed, but my heart goes out to those who didn't recoup their expenses. This was my first time to this show so I didn't have the expectations that most there carried with them. For me, this was a chance to see what how this show worked, what sort of other work was represented, prices that other potters were posting, and if it seemed like something I'd like to do in the future. Based on the weak sales I'll probably hold off for a year or two, but there was work there that made me realize my work wasn't as bad as I keep thinking it is.
I walked through the ceramics section of the show each day I was there and found great pots and met potters each time. There was some really great work that blew me away such as Alan and Brenda Newman's work. They impressed me with their goblets. I've never before seen a ceramic wine glass or goblet that I've liked; I don't know why, they just seem clunky to me. But I actually really like theirs as well as all their other forms. Their website photos don't really do the glazes justice, there's a lot more going on than what you see there. Good stuff. Also Amelie Stamps work was great. Jason Bohnert's work was really good stuff. Goyer Bonneau Ceramics jumped out as pretty different from the pack.
While in Philly I took some time to check out the Clay Studio and found these humorous plates by Garth Johnson.
The rest are some impressions of Philadelphia.