Woodturner's Resource
Woodturner's Resource  
  • Featured Artist    • Websites   Support Wr
Tutorials, Projects & Tips   • Event Calendar   • Tool and Book Store
  Home Page Forum HelpSearch Map TPT Resources LoginRegister
 
Pages: 1 
Send Topic Print
How good is good enough? (Read 2,710 times)
 
Andrew Abercrombie
Active Member
***
Offline


Shavin' it easy

Posts: 128

Eagan, MN, Minnesota, USA
Eagan, MN
Minnesota
USA

Gender: male
How good is good enough?
Nov 28th, 2015 at 12:30am
 
Hey everyone, starting to turn some things and having tons of fun making shavings. I am curious if anyone has some suggestions on when do I deem my turnings/designs good enough to be brought to a farmers market, etc.

TIA
Back to top
  

A:) Let's take roll call to see if we're all here.
B:) Well now, it could be that we are all here, then some of us aren't all there.
A:) Right, let the record show that we are here.
C:) Who?
 
IP Logged
 
Register To Remove Ads
Ron Sardo
WR Administrator
WR Patron
*****
Offline


Chief cook and bottle
washer

Posts: 9,263

Drums, Pennsylvania, USA
Drums
Pennsylvania
USA


PM 3520
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #1 - Nov 28th, 2015 at 8:19am
 
Without seeing your work this is a hard question to answer.

Over the years I've noticed that "good enough" usually isn't.

I would suggest to make sure you have accomplished a good form without any tear outs, tool marks or sanding marks along with having applied a good finish.
Back to top
  

Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Bill Neff
WR Addict
*****
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 654

Barronett, Wisconsin, USA
Barronett
Wisconsin
USA

Gender: male
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #2 - Nov 28th, 2015 at 8:54am
 
I've seen a couple of turners at art shows that don't sand their bowls.  The tool marks are part of their designs.  One used a foot powered lathe and his are rustic looking. Both these guys had very good tool control.  They both had very nice work (one had been featured on the back page of the AAW journal). 

To me it's a case of knowing the rules and how not to use them in design.
Back to top
  

Some people are like slinkies... totally worthless but it puts a smile on your face when you push them down the stairs.
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Al Wasser
WR Supporter
*****
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 444

Pueblo West, CO, Colorado, USA
Pueblo West, CO
Colorado
USA

Gender: male

Robust American Beauty
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #3 - Nov 28th, 2015 at 11:19am
 
Go to other art/craft shows.  Visually compare your work to what you see.  I have found, over the years, that we are either our own best friend or our own worst enemy.  Giving yourself a decent performance rating is not easy.  Keep striving for improvement.
Back to top
  
 
IP Logged
 
Ed Weber
WR Global Moderator
WR Patron
*****
Offline



Posts: 4,691

Wilton, California, USA
Wilton
California
USA

Gender: male

JET 1642
Grizzly G0584
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #4 - Nov 28th, 2015 at 1:12pm
 
Andrew Abercrombie wrote on Nov 28th, 2015 at 12:30am:
I am curious if anyone has some suggestions on when do I deem my turnings/designs good enough to be brought to a farmers market, etc.


It really depends on your competition, in which case you need to check out what others are selling, not what they have for sale, but what they actually sell.
If you are the only one selling items of a particular type you don't have any problems.
if there are others that sell similar items at the same venue you either need to.
Have the same/equal quality and sell at slightly lower prices
Have better quality and sell at competitors price
Have a better/different selection than your competitors
Price your items for the venue you're selling at
Back to top
  
 
IP Logged
 
Gary D Baker
Full Member
**
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 71

Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #5 - Nov 29th, 2015 at 6:34am
 
Andrew,
You aren't selling to woodturners.  If you have pretty, rustic, interesting wood in an object that has a purpose you will do well.  They aren't worried about thin walls, aren't interested in artsy fartsy.  They want something that they can see in their home that looks nice and is useful.  Finish is very important and they want to feel it.  A story about the history of the wood is good too.  Give it a try.  It is a learning process.
Back to top
  
 
IP Logged
 
Tony Rozendaal
WR Patron
******
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 843

East Troy, WI, Wisconsin, USA
East Troy, WI
Wisconsin
USA

Gender: male
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #6 - Nov 29th, 2015 at 9:36am
 
Andrew Abercrombie wrote on Nov 28th, 2015 at 12:30am:
Hey everyone, starting to turn some things and having tons of fun making shavings. I am curious if anyone has some suggestions on when do I deem my turnings/designs good enough to be brought to a farmers market, etc.

TIA

I agree with almost everything written before - here is my suggestion. Go to a local club meeting. Watch for the guy/gal who brings in a really nice piece without a lot of special embellishments for show and tell, but who doesn't have a lot to say about it. Another way to select your mentor is a local club member who does a demo that you find to be really valuable.

Approach him/her one-on-one and ask him/her to critique your work. Make up your mind not to be defensive about their comments or suggestions. Make your decision about craft fairs from that conversation.

Another note about local craft fairs/farmers markets - people who frequent local craft fairs aren't necessarily looking for a gallery quality finish. I do a mushroom form right off the lath with no sanding or finish.  With the natural edge of the branch wood that I use, it all "looks right" - sort of rustic. IMHO, form is more important than finish. As a side benefit, doing the mushrooms is teaching me a lot about tool control on spindle turnings.
Back to top
  

Turnin' and learnin'

Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register
WWW trozendaal  
IP Logged
 
Kat Tomiczek
WR Supporter
*****
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 10

Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #7 - Jan 27th, 2016 at 3:09pm
 
Ask yourself as I do: "is this good enough, am I done with this piece." The facts is: if I've asked I've already answered the question. No, it needs more work and I keep striving for perfection whatever that is for me. You'll know when you've reached the point of being good....in the meanwhile 'Have fun turning and don't let selling be your mission'.
Back to top
  
 
IP Logged
 
Don Stephan
WR Addict
*****
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 1,442

Cincinnati, Ohio, Ohio, USA
Cincinnati, Ohio
Ohio
USA

Gender: male
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #8 - Jan 27th, 2016 at 8:14pm
 
For help evaluating your shape and design, look for the design book by Richard Raffan.  Chock full of suggestions, profiles, and examples.
Back to top
  
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Ed Weber
WR Global Moderator
WR Patron
*****
Offline



Posts: 4,691

Wilton, California, USA
Wilton
California
USA

Gender: male

JET 1642
Grizzly G0584
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #9 - Jan 28th, 2016 at 9:38am
 
Andrew Abercrombie wrote on Nov 28th, 2015 at 12:30am:
I am curious if anyone has some suggestions on when do I deem my turnings/designs good enough to be brought to a farmers market, etc.


For most artists their own work is never good enough, this is why an outside perspective is needed. At some point you just need to do it, go out and try to sell something. You will find out pretty quickly if your work is "good enough"

Kat Tomiczek wrote on Jan 27th, 2016 at 3:09pm:
in the meanwhile 'Have fun turning and don't let selling be your mission'.


Unless selling is the mission


Back to top
  
 
IP Logged
 
Breck Whitworth
WR Supporter
*****
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 2,222

Gulfport, Mississippi, USA
Gulfport
Mississippi
USA

Gender: male

PM 3520-B
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #10 - Feb 1st, 2016 at 3:29pm
 
Andrew, I will say this first: Do you sign your work? If not then I would say you probably are not ready to sell. I have seen fair turners who sign their work and are happy with the results sell pieces to family and friends and even at craft fairs. A piece that is not signed tells a customer you don't feel good enough about your work to put your name on it. On the other hand when you do put your name on a piece (where all can read it) you tend to try a little harder to do a better job.
    quality of work that sells is relative, it depends on so many factors, many of which have already been listed by others. I knew I was ready to try by the number of people I wasn't related to that said they loved my work and I had built up quite an inventory. If you have confidence your work is good enough to put your name on and let people see it proudly then yes you are ready to try to sell your work regardless of how "good" it is. Like Ed said, until you actually try you will never really know.  Good Luck, Now swing the bat when you are ready, if you get a few hits you are on your way if you strike out a bunch of times then back to the practice routine.
Back to top
« Last Edit: Feb 1st, 2016 at 3:33pm by Breck Whitworth »  

May the Lord Bless the work of our hands! And Necessity is the mother of invention:
 
IP Logged
 
Paul Roberts
WR Noob
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 10


Rikon 100
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #11 - Jun 11th, 2016 at 4:02pm
 
Been turning for over 65 years, selling for 10 years. Unless your work is intended for the "Rustic", or "Natural" market, I think the finish should be as close to perfect as possible. The galleries we show in prefer a satin finish, so I do a final rub with the finest steel wool I can find.

We finish without any tool or sanding marks. It is extra work, but we get a lot of compliments on our finish quality, even sell some, once in a while.  Smiley
Back to top
  

Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register
 
IP Logged
 
Register To Remove Ads
Ed Weber
WR Global Moderator
WR Patron
*****
Offline



Posts: 4,691

Wilton, California, USA
Wilton
California
USA

Gender: male

JET 1642
Grizzly G0584
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #12 - Jun 11th, 2016 at 8:10pm
 
Paul Roberts wrote on Jun 11th, 2016 at 4:02pm:
We finish without any tool or sanding marks. It is extra work, but we get a lot of compliments on our finish quality, even sell some, once in a while.  Smiley


Not to split hairs, but to me, it's a part of the work, not extra.
IMO, A good finish can go a long way toward turning an average piece into a wonderful piece.
Back to top
  
 
IP Logged
 
Paul Roberts
WR Noob
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 10


Rikon 100
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #13 - Jun 12th, 2016 at 9:24am
 
"Extra work"? You are right, in our case it is "Standard procedure" I have seen work for sale with turn marks & dry spots in the finish. I don't know if it ever sold?

The gallery owners inspect our work very carefully & we have always received compliments on our finish.

To me, even the most beautiful piece of wood with a poor finish in unacceptable.

While working behind the counter at a co-op gallery it was interesting to see how many women wanted to pick up the bowl & feel it. Smooth is good.

Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register
Back to top
  

Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register
 
IP Logged
 
David Walker
WR Noob
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 5

Bourbon, Indiana, USA
Bourbon
Indiana
USA

Gender: male
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #14 - Aug 3rd, 2016 at 6:22am
 
If people buy it your good enough!
Back to top
  
 
IP Logged
 
Walt
WR Patron
******
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 1,988

Hanford, California, USA
Hanford
California
USA

Gender: male

PM 3520A
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #15 - Aug 3rd, 2016 at 10:55am
 
A couple of weeks ago my wife and I enjoyed a weekend at the coast in central California.  She likes going through the shops.  I tag along usually bored out of my mind.  In a few shops they have turnings for sale and I always check them out.  The form and finish is always what catches the eye.  In three different shops I picked up bowls and HF's.  The finish was not pleasing.  I think the turner used a rattle can with a lot of dust suspended in his shop so it felt abrasive.  Shaking my head the shop clerk saw me and asked what was wrong.  I told him the quality of the 6" diameter bowl did not warrant the $80 he was charging.  He replied, I'll have to work on that.  OOps!  Then we talked about what I felt about improvements he should make.  He stated he sells a lot of them just like he had on display.   I felt it was junior high school shop quality. But I didn't tell him that.  If you want to sell something and charge top dollar them make it top quality.  When I put my name on something I feel you wont find better quality.
Back to top
« Last Edit: Aug 3rd, 2016 at 10:56am by Walt »  
 
IP Logged
 
Gary D Baker
Full Member
**
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 71

Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #16 - Aug 4th, 2016 at 7:29pm
 
An ugly piece with a great finish will probably sell.  It will be difficult to sell anything with a bad finish.  If you spend 5 times as much time in sanding and finish than you spend turning ... You will have great sales.
Back to top
  
 
IP Logged
 
william trench
Senior Member
****
Offline


WR Rocks!

Posts: 260

South Salem, USA
South Salem
USA

Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #17 - Aug 5th, 2016 at 5:53am
 
"If you spend 5 times as much time in sanding and finish than you spend turning ... " Ah, there's the rub. ( pun)  The turning is just the creation of the form. The finish is the presentation of the piece.
Back to top
  

wood turned good
Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register
WWW kitchawanwood  
IP Logged
 
Tony De Masi
WR Noob
Offline


Soldier On

Posts: 2

Front Royal, Va., USA
Front Royal, Va.
USA


Robust AB
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #18 - Aug 5th, 2016 at 7:33am
 
Two thoughts on this. One is good enough that the public will buy it and the other is good enough for you as the artist.  For me I have never made anything that I have been totally and completely satisfied with.
Back to top
  
 
IP Logged
 
Ron Sardo
WR Administrator
WR Patron
*****
Offline


Chief cook and bottle
washer

Posts: 9,263

Drums, Pennsylvania, USA
Drums
Pennsylvania
USA


PM 3520
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #19 - Aug 5th, 2016 at 8:03am
 
Good enough is Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register quality.

My opinion is if I want to sell for a higher price I I have to have a higher quality product.
Back to top
  

Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register
WWW  
IP Logged
 
John Grace
WR Supporter
*****
Offline


Everyone needs a good
wingman...

Posts: 610

Bel Air, Maryland, USA
Bel Air
Maryland
USA

Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #20 - Aug 6th, 2016 at 5:47pm
 
I would simply say that 'good enough' comes from the wallet of the buyer...if it sold it's good enough.  At my first and only show to date I took a wide selection of bowls, plates, and a few vases.  As I was packing my car, my wife scoffed at me taking a rather under-whelming sycamore piece that simply didn't come out as planned but for some reason I couldn't bring myself to thrown into the fire.  So I set-up my tables with most of my pieces priced in the $25- $75 range but only a $10 price on the sycamore piece.  And yes, part of the idea with the low price was to increase the odds of it selling just so I could gloat to the wife.  Low and behold, it was the third piece I sold that day to a pleasant little old lady who thought she'd found the crown jewels and said it would be perfect for her country kitchen.

I do suggest you see what others are selling for and have an understanding of who is likely to attend the show you wish to sell at.  It's tough selling a Rolls Royce in a Chevrolet crowd.
Back to top
  

“If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.”  Kipling
 
IP Logged
 
Arlin Eastman
Active Member
***
Offline


Born in the USA

Posts: 204

Council Bluffs, Iowa, USA
Council Bluffs
Iowa
USA

Gender: male

PM3520B
Re: How good is good enough?
Reply #21 - Dec 29th, 2016 at 12:44pm
 
Andrew

After thinking about this about my work for a while I feel that

If I have done my absolute best at that time that is good.  Over the years I have improved and I would no longer sell that.
Plus you are always going to learn now techniques and how to turn different things but in the end it all it is still if you did your best.
Back to top
  

It is always the right time;  To do the right thing
 
IP Logged
 
Pages: 1 
Send Topic Print