Thursday, December 11, 2008

Support for Artists

If we, citizens, do not support our artists, then we sacrifice our imagination in the altar of crude reality and we end up believing in nothing and having worthless dreams.
-Yann Martel-

While I don't have any illusions about being an artist or for that matter an artisan ( call myself a crafter who does needlework) I have a presence on several sites that are filled with artists. Most of them would tell you that they are driven to create whether you buy their items or not. But my question to you is, why miss out?

Looking around our home the other night Jim and I noticed that our favorite things are those that come from someone's hands. We have a couple pieces of pottery bought on trips. I have a beautiful quilt bought in Pennsylvania. We have glass hand blown after the artist listened to our ideas on color and general shape. We have prints of watercolors from places we have been done by local artists. All of these mean so much more to us than doodads and knickknacks that were mass produced and fill our lives with maybe useful but intended to be disposable stuff.

If you are looking for handmade in any form to fill your holidays there are 4 sites I would recommend you take a look at.
  • Etsy - the biggest marketplace there is. It can be overwhelming but the things available in all types of arts at all kinds of price ranges are amazing.
  • Silkfair - not just handmade but a crafts section is there with the work of some folks that is worth a look.
  • Shop Handmade - a fairly new site. This site has some ties to green projects like planting trees. The magnifying feature makes it easier than on some sites to examine what you are condidering for purchase.
  • Art Fire - just getting started. It looks as if many artists that were on or are on Etsy are represented here. Because of the smaller size which I don't expect to continue much longer, getting to feel like you can see it all is part of the fun.

Consider handmade for the holidays and afterwords in your everyday life. It will make you feel good, kind of like having this shawl wrapped around your shoulders on a snowy night at home. Trust me on this.

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