Clay Fest is usually a lovely low-ish impact show for us. To begin with, it's right here in Eugene: no overnights, cat-sitters, long drives. In addition, they provide pipe-and-drape, and the set-up period runs from noon on Thursday 'til the doors open at 5 pm Friday. We generally unload the van, lay out the carpet and set up the shelves Thursday, take time to vacuum the rug, repaint the dings on the shelves, then go home again, come back Friday to actually unpack the pots and put the extra boxes in the back.
Friday's also the day to check in an entry for the gallery. I usually try to have a new (or newish) sculpture, but as I've sold the last three I've made, went into deep storage to retrieve this one. It's called The Cape
, based on a Guy Clark (and Susanna Clark and Jim Janosky) song that I've loved for years, and shows the protagonist in the first verse: Eight years old with a flour sack cape tied all around his neck...
Did a demo for my Saturday work shift, making paintbrushes and decorating bowls for a small but appreciative (and constantly shifting) audience, followed by lunch and some time in the booth talking with folks and restocking. Clay Fest is never a great show for us, sales-wise, too many folks just looking who'll eventually get back to us at Holiday Market (or not), but it's nice to catch up with potter friends, see all the new artists and new work.
Unfortunately, around mid-afternoon, my back began spasming, so I left Denise in charge of the booth while I went home and crashed on the bed with a heating pad. (Clay Fest has centralized check-out, so she didn't have to actually sell pots, just talk to customers and restock the booth. Still a lot of work.)
Sunday morning I felt a bit better, so did my sales shift at the credit line. Three hours on a stool crashed my back again, so it was home for Tylenol and more heating pad, to get me recovered enough to help pack up. Fortunately for both of us, my very helpful choir director from church lives nearby, and was willing to come over at 5:30 and help haul boxes and shelves out to the van and especially hoist them in
. I managed to help until about the last fifteen minutes, at which point my back froze up again and I ended up standing by the van and pointing for the last few bits.
So all told, less low-impact than usual. But still successful: my not-at-all-new sculpture still earned me second prize in the gallery competition, making it two years in a row.