Sunday, November 22, 2009

details, details, details

Now I know why the stereotype of artist not having good business practices probably has some truth to it. I've been spending the last few weeks weeding through the minutia of the why's and how to's of setting up an LLC. That's even less exciting than watching paint dry. Then there are the tax reporting issues. I've always filed jointly (with my wife), but now with an LLC and being self employed who knows what the tax attorney will tell us. That's another meeting.

Last week was mostly dealing with liability and property insurance for my many adventures. Seems that insurance companies still don't know what to do with you unless you fit neatly into one of their 'classes' for coverage. Thankfully, with a few phone calls to several groups that specialize in helping 'ceative' groups and individuals, I was able to find agencies that can be creative in setting up coverage for us round pegs trying to fit into square holes.

Fractured Atlas is one of those organizations as well as Springboard For The Arts. Thanks to these organizations I didn't have to spend twice the amount for coverage, and was able to trust that I might actually have a policy that isn't full of loopholes.

Without these organizations to help I can easily see why creatives sometimes avoid doing basic business practices. It isn't that creatives are lazy or ignorant of such... it's just that the business world in many cases just doesn't know how to work with creatives, and translates that into what appears to the creatives as (and in some cases actually is) over charging.

More details...

Last week I had my first test of the "Have Kiln Will Travel" concept. The test class at local high school was a success. This was gratifying since a few months of prep as well as thousands of dollars went into getting ready for the test. The amount of gear and glass going to a site turned into a bit of logistical problem. I ended up with a truckload of 80 gallon tupperware roughneck containers to hold all the stuff (including 6 kilns).

OK... now what. Do I have to load, then unload the truck full of gear after every event? No way! I just want to keep it locked up in my truck when I'm at the studio. Which means that I have to buy a set of equipment that is dedicated just for Have Kiln Will Travel and not for studio use. OK, no problem. But the gear must be covered and secured. So that means a $1500 topper for my truck!

Yikes! How many thousands am I going to pour into this?

Well, thankfully I think I'm done with all the major expenses. Now I'm off to create the web site for Have Kiln Will Travel, and I'll do most of that myself. I might call in a Flash expert to do a little work, and hopefully it won't cost too much.

It is ofen said that it takes money to make money... I guess that is even true when you are doing fund raising.

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