It isn't easy being a lovespoon carver. Like any and almost every artist, I find it a constant struggle to be recognized, to find potential clients and to be paid anything even remotely close to a fair wage for the work involved.
Because I so obviously enjoy what I do, there is a perception that it is all 'fun' and I do it strictly because it warms my heart and brings my life meaning and purpose. Yep, there's an element of truth in that, BUT that sure as heck doesn't pay any bills.
I can't tell you the number of times I have been asked to donate my work for various 'causes' and how often I have had customers tell me "You're a bit expensive". It's demoralizing and disheartening and often makes me strongly consider just pulling the plug on the whole affair. The cold hard truth of the matter is that I could be a greeter at Walmart and make better money than I get from making these 'too expensive' lovespoons.
So it is against that gloomy background that I have had such a big lift from the commission of this beautiful 50th Anniversary lovespoon!! It came with a fair budget which allowed me to get a bit carried away with detailing and not bankrupt myself. It allowed me a great deal of artistic freedom with the design and it was going to a home where it would be loved and respected! A tonic for all which ailed me!!
But the real payout came when the anniversary couple took time from their big day to phone me and express their delight with the lovespoon!! That beautiful little conversation reminded me once again why I love what I do and why this job (despite its perils and tribulations) is the best one I have ever had. Lovespoons may only be simple, delicate pieces of wood but they are POWERFUL! That my eyes, hands and heart can transform a lump of wood into an artwork with such intense meaning for its owners is a unique gift. One which I am VERY fortunate and grateful to enjoy.