Ceramics in the Digital Age: A DIY diptych

by Ceramics

PART I: DIY Marketing, or Social Media 101

By Guest Blogger and Ceramics Program Instructor, Kathy King

When artists walk into the studio, they are typically armed with ideas and a plan of how to create their art using learned techniques and tools. The greater challenge often arises when the work is finished and ready for exhibition or sale. Navigating the numerous, web-based marketing resources can be both perplexing and intimidating. On Wednesday, January 13th, Kristen Kieffer shared her own experience as a studio potter. She actively sells her work through her website/blog, Etsy on-line shop and uses social networks such as Facebook to share her ideas. Kieffer runs her own studio in Massachusetts and has exhibited her work internationally, as well as taught workshops around North America at craft centers and universities.

PART II: Photographing Your Work, or Pottery Paparazzi

By Guest Blogger, Teresa Lattanzio

So you can make a good looking piece of pottery. But can a picture do it justice?

Hiring a professional photographer to document your art work can be costly. Conversely, acquiring the gear and supplies to do it yourself is a heavy investment. Resident artist Christopher Adams at the Harvard ceramics studio has found a way to get professional results with minimum investment, and you don’t have to be a fancy photographer to follow his lead.

Within three hours, Mr. Adams covered everything from terminology basics to demonstrating a live studio shoot. He presented a comprehensive list of items necessary for a DIY studio while showing that many professional tools can be made from everyday items such as tinfoil and a box. If you're an artist with no photography experience, terms such as shutter speed, f-stop, aperture, ISO, and white balance can send you running in the other direction. By doing test shots, and then later reviewing them on the computer for the class to see, the relationships between all these terms suddenly came together.

[Caption: Kristen Kieffer during a demonstration]

[Caption: Kristen Kieffer's Blog]

[Caption: The Studio Setup]

[Caption: Sample Shots]