How did you begin with your art?
I began with a sheet of what used to be called typing paper and some discarded genericwatercolors. My mother still has that first effort, framed, hanging near oil portraits of my 7brothers and sisters and me.Living where I still live and raising 5 kids to be happy, confident, and kind, involved all the artprojects, birthday cake baking, painting, sewing, knitting, etc, that you can imagine! Allwonderful, every single moment! I was lucky enough to rediscover watercolor, then discoverpottery, and to practice them both for many years.Then almost 5 years ago on Thanksgiving Day, just about at noon and in the bright, coldsunshine, my oldest son was robbed, shot, and killed. About a mile from home.
Months later, when I couldn‟t scream and cry in agony in my family‟s presence any longer, it
the pottery studio. Clay isn‟t bothered by my tears. It allows me to think, and to
remember, and to make something as beautiful as I possibly can out of it all. And somehow theclay absorbs every tear.
How would you describe your experience with Etsy?
Let me preface this by saying that my computer experience prior to etsy was what you could callaverage. In my first year of college at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, I dutifullypurchased a stack of narrow, manila colored punchcards, took them to the lower level of themathematics building, stood in line for what seemed like hours, and handed the cards through
what looked like a glass teller‟s window to one of a row of shivering, uncomfortable women
layered with sweaters and fingerless gloves. Unsettled by the icy hand that snatched my bundle
of cards and believing I‟d have little chance to be „in the driver‟s seat,‟ I backed out of line, outof the building, and tested out of math so I‟d never have to return. Since then, I‟ve „interfaced‟
with computers only about as much as my current job required. So if I can do this, anyone whowants to do it, can!
What advice would you give to a Etsy beginner?
If you‟re passionate about what you make or do and really want to „get it out there‟, think about
etsy like learning to swim. The more lessons you have under your belt before you wade into the
river, the less likely you are to feel like you‟re being swept away with the current.
Don‟t get me wrong, etsy has made all the basics pretty well foolproof, so you won‟t drown.
Even if you slap your descriptions and photos together quickly, the etsy applications andinstructions are so 1-2-
3 that you‟ll have a shop in no time at all. But taking advantage of etsy‟s
staff and their advice on how to light, arrange, or crop your images or how to write your
description (and what not to forget) from your buyer‟s point of view can save you the incredible
amount of time it has taken me to re-photograph and edit every , single listing.
Not that I‟m done; not by a long shot! I‟
m not at all satisfied and am continually making
adjustments, especially with my photos. But etsy‟s framework keeps me afloat in the meantime.I‟m proof that, using what you have to work with, you can start (even if it‟s a slow start, like
Are you more creative in the morning or evening?
Instead of letting my thoughts race around and around when I wake up before sunrise, I head