Thursday, January 26, 2012

Thoughts on Time Spent Painting

maypop flowerTime spent on these illuminations is a funny thing as the great effort of these pieces is somewhat devalued by the fact that they are handed out by the King and Queen free of charge to recipients. Scribes are the only artisans who are regularly expected to give away their art. This is why, years ago, I lobbied for and was granted Kingdom funds to purchase scribal supplies for members of the Trimaris College of Scribes and thankfully this funding is still being provided. We sometimes hold fundraisers and occasionally profits from events are donated to this account.

For those of you planning to volunteer at Gulf Wars, you can indicate the Trimaris College of Scribes as the recipient of the war profit split derived from your volunteer hours.

When I create commission pieces I have to ask for the recipient to pay the materials and framing costs. I didn’t always do this but one day I figured out what I had spent on several pieces I had created and realized that I was running myself into a financial hole. This is also why I have been working on the speed of my pieces and Canna Lily trying to limit myself to less than 5 or 6 hours per illuminated page for Kingdom use.

I have found that I must balance the use of my time and find the point where I can produce a good number of very good pieces rather than just one extraordinary piece so I can be more helpful in my contributions and more responsible with my personal time. I work full time and have several hobbies so I have to be realistic about how much time I can dedicate to this craft that I love, but from which I do not generally profit. 

The illustrations on this page were created for a brochure that I illustrated in 2009.


Lana Tessler said...

It's something I often consider as well, in part because left to my own devices I really ...really... like complex pieces. I try to balance myself with something that challenges me that I can learn from or really get elaborate on (though I have to admit that peacock feather border makes me want to just give you my paint brushes and bow to your talent ;) ) and then I'll do three or four simpler (and shorter) ones to keep myself fluid and moving. The framing and material's costs being covered makes a lot of sense, however. I had to realize several years ago that as much as I love giving friends masks, I have to charge or I simply can't *afford* to keep making them.

Kristen said...

Making art for your friends can sure be an expensive endeavor. By the way, I love your masks and dolls! I looked at a few of your pieces and they are gorgeous!