Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A thought on trends


There was a forum post today on Etsy complaining about the overabundance of fox-themed treasuries on Etsy's front page. How foxes are the "in" thing right now, along with owls and other woodland creatures. While I agree with the post and think there should be more variety on the front page...{why do they always focus on the super indie hipster themes?}...it also left a sour note with me.

When we talk about trends, they're usually these fleeting ideas. Quick to come and go. Not necessarily something deep and positive. People talk in the forums about others who make "trendy" items as if they're followers, uncreative, unoriginal, not as good as they are with their own craft.


Which brings me back to the treasuries. I make fox figurines. They've been featured in a lot of fox treasuries. None of which have made it to the front page. {Guess it just goes to show how many fox treasuries there really are}. But I didn't start making them until one was requested as a custom order. That's when I realized...wow, these are a really cute idea. Since then, I've had nothing but positive responses about them.

So now does that make my work "trendy"? I'm making (and enjoying) and selling something that people like and want to buy. Isn't that the damn point of all of this? To be one of the elite "I don't conform to the norm" people...do I have to go out of my way to make things that people don't like and don't want to buy? And if "trendy" pertains to something people like...is that such a bad thing? How long does something have to hold a person's interest for it to leave the "trendy" realm and enter the "timeless classic" era? Isn't everything technically a trend? Who's to say?

I guess the next time someone requests a woodland creature, I should scoff and say no, that's beneath me and my art.

5 comments:

Dan said...

Don't listen to the naysayers and make what makes you and your clients happy. I think the new figures are very cute. I'd even go so far as to say they're 'foxy'. ;)

Jamie Ferraioli said...

hehe...foxy. thanks!

Greener Pastures--A City Girl Goes Country said...

Facts not Fox. Oh wait, that's the "news" show and we're talking about art!

You make an excellent point. An artist has to do whatever SHE wants to do, whether it's trendy or unusual, doesn't matter--otherwise you defeat the whole purpose.

Yesenia M. said...

And even if you didn't make your cutesy little foxes before the "fox craze" and started to make them to capture more sales, then who cares? That's what business is about. Meeting customer wants and making a profit. Each artist will make their piece unique and indicative of their personal style. No one fox is the same.

I think the people who complain just don't understand what a trend is and it's purpose. Once the fox thing fades, there will be something else that I'm sure they'll complain about(I'm calling it, I think it'll be mice).

The real challenge is offering a piece that differentiates you from the rest of the flock. That's where true artistry comes in and people recognize it when they see it and they will buy it. Perhaps, they struggle with that ability to be unique and that's why they're so bitter.

Jamie Ferraioli said...

hear hear!