Finally - after 15 months and many hurdles, this website is finally "on air". It has seriously challenged my many years of marketing and management experience, but finally we are on line and open for business. That's pretty exciting, well at least for me! We can now move forward to get on with the real job of finding appreciative customers who, like me, love pottery.
The project has developed through a series of stages - from something as simple as finding the right name!! (which turned out to be something of a nightmare!) to setting up normal business systems, building the website itself, learning how to establish an efficient transaction processing system and sourcing suitable "add ons" to make the whole website work effectively. But by far the biggest challenge this year has been finding excellent potters who really enjoy building practical, usable art. That has certainly been my most difficult, but most rewarding task. We are launching today with a core "foundation" group of 12 potters, mostly from NSW, but a few from Queensland, Victoria and the ACT. We will continue to expand that until we have a truly national representation of talented and skilled studio potters from all over Australia. We will also introduce you to some exciting, emerging talent. I am actively pursuing skilled and creative artists all the time, so there are already several new additions in the pipeline. Watch this space!! You should all know that I am doing this because I love usable, beautiful pottery, I have never touched a piece of wet clay in my life, so it has been a very steep learning curve.
Thankyou to everyone who has helped me get here today - including the brilliant Angela Spindler from Depot Creative who came up with the name and original design concepts from our logo and colour scheme right through to packaging materials, Stephen Von Muenster who guided me through the bureaucratic task of registering the trademark and name with IP Australia (a 9 month project) , Bethany Taylor and the team from MyWork Australia in Brisbane who have very patiently led me through the build of the website and the months of tweaking!! I think I must be their most pesky and pedantic client, A special thankyou to all the Foundation Potters who have taken a risk with me to see if this works, particularly Nicola Coady who inspired me to do this in the first place a few years ago and the wonderful Katherine Mahoney who has spent so much of her valuable time helping me to learn the jargon and understand the work of the Potter. Thank you to Greg Piper for his professionalism and creative photography that enables you to see what we are selling so beautifully and clearly and thankyou too to my long suffering family who have listened endlessly over the past 15 months to my stories, groans and moans, and who have helped me in so many practical ways to do things like setting up packing areas and storerooms, sourcing the right equipment for our markets and fairs projects and helping me to keep my sanity when things went wrong and it all took so long.
It's now onwards and upwards. The focus now changes to building our talented potter base and finding our new customers. I hope you will all support these hard working and talented artists, I am in awe of their innovation and talent and how hard they have to work to produce a single plate or a mug with a handle. It is time consuming, intricate, skilled and dirty work. There is a labour of love in every piece.
Enjoy the site - it will grow pretty much every day from now - this is simply the starting block, so get tuned in. I have many more ideas and a lot more to do. If you have any comments or ideas I would love to hear from you!
PS. I will be setting this blog up as a two way conversation - just need a few days to figure out how to do that!! Have a great cold and wet week!