search  current discussion  categories  events - workshops 

lucrative workshops

updated sat 20 oct 01


mel jacobson on fri 19 oct 01

teaching around the country is very exhilarating and exciting.

it is a way to meet people, get the message to folks
on a one to one basis. it is a teachers dream.
i love it and give it more than 100%.

it is not a money maker. just think of leaving your studio
for four days, leaving your work and family. packing up
and flying for a day. then returning and trying to get back
in the rhythm.

at best, it is a break even activity.

those of us that do it are usually dedicated to the
world of clay. want to give back. it would be a tough
way to make profit. it sure is not vacation. my body and
mind are just recovering from building that kiln in denver.
just some things to think of:
had to do a site plan. send plans and specs. at least 25 emails and calls.
work with frustration of the inspector, would not approve
the nils burners...they did not have a ul sticker...of course
that is crazy...ul sticker is for home appliance...could we get
thought the thick way.
3" slope one way on the pad, 2" slope the other way.
big problem.
three trips to home depot...carry cement bags to car. money
from my back in 5 weeks.
four hour trip to steel yard. pick out steel..weld brackets (thanks bill)
pay cash.
not enough hard brick...make do.
children playing 6 feet from kiln over a wall. fire only on saturday.
500 questions
someone wants to build a portable, on wheels gas kiln. work on plan.
difficult idea.
far too many sweets and snacks. need tums.
if the kiln does not work fault.
all problems are my problem.
boy, i made a hell of a lot of money going to denver.

but, they learned, were excited, got a great kiln and are all
informed about propane, orifice size, know how to home make
a burner, know pressure, gas, fuel delivery, primary air, secondary air,
damper control. they can measure a fire box, lay out a kiln understanding
shelf size. they know how to stack a kiln for maximum firing quality.
they know what a thermocouple is, pilot control safety. they are safer
more knowledgeable potters. their confidence is at a better place.
i feel good about that.
passing on the craft, that is what workshops are about.
one to one, real time. i am blessed to be able to do it.
ask sharlene if it is worth it. you would get a different answer.
she does the books.

Minnetonka, Minnesota, U.S.A.
web site: