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skills not taught in school

updated fri 4 jan 02


Eleanora Eden on thu 3 jan 02

Without making any exhaustive investigations into this, I just have afew
observations I made myself while in various colleges.

When I was at UC Berkeley in the late sixties the matter of making a
living was, seemingly, beneath the dignity of people teaching art and
ceramics. I think it was assumed that if you were worth anything you would
be teaching. Period. Never mind that far more people were getting degrees
than there were ceramics departments to employ them.

Then in 1980-81 I took a MA at San Jose State. Now the name of the game
was preparing the student for a $$$$ world. The profs boasted about their
earning power and people came in to give pep talks, mainly about how
successful they were and how many peoples' business cards they had in their
wallets. Pretty smarmy.

None of this was very helpful in preparing me for earning my family's
living off pots, which I have actually managed to do without knowing
diddly-squat about anything pertaining to business.

So, which is more appropriate, concentrating on the creative aspect and
leaving the rest to chance, or imposing a cheap $$$$ mentality? The
former, of course. Is something else possible? Of course.

Just afew thougths.


Sandy Miller wrote:

" I support education 100% but I have come into pottery by the seat of my
pants, I make a fair living at it and have street sense. I have taken
workshops to learn new techniques. I have been all over the world to
pursue this passion and I must tell you I am so glad I did. I have
dyslexia but I have managed to teach myself a fair amount of chemistry. I
manage to have my hands in clay or a glaze bucket almost everyday unless
I'm doing books or delievering pots. Why are schools turning out "artists"
in record numbers with no idea how to make a living at their craft? "


Eleanora Eden 802 869-2003
Paradise Hill
Bellows Falls, VT 05101