The Oculus Press RR1 Box 690, Grafton, NH 03240, Phone 603-523-7997
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Having a Family and Running a Business

Denise: Our plate is full! Chris is great at organizing our work week. He is responsible for keeping a eye on the calender to help structure our work. The demands of the business tend to outweigh the need to do constant domestic chores. There are months when we are away more than we are at home. Travel is equal parts stress and adventure. It is invigorating and tiring. Part of the joy of our life-style is that being our own boss, we create our own time structure.

We do look forward each new season to seeing our "extended world." There is a family of people in the art and craft scene. The friendship and empathy of others who raised families "on the road" is gratifying.

The past two years, we were getting used to working and living with a child. Now, this seems to be something that we can handle with a little less of a panic! There are so many forces that direct our lives which are beyond our control. It has taken some years for us to develop faith that the world has a space for us. The passing of our 1 Oth year in business has elevated us to a new plateau of confidence that the success of our independence is a reality and permanent. Confidence builds with each passing season. We are beginning to plan even further in advance. Our art is in a perpetual state of development. We feel truly fluent with etching, that we can do any image. This language skill we have with our medium makes it a joy to create.
Christopher: This year (1997) we will travel more than ever. We will be doing shows as far west as Ohio as far south as Maryland. We have had good sales in Ohio and Maryland and have added some new shows that have been most highly recommended. I have to keep my accommodations itinerary on the computer. Our organization continues to improve. This year we have already had some gallery exposure with three group shows and a tenth-anniversary retrospective of fifty five of our works in Bath, Maine. We have always hoped to do more shows like theseand to enter in competitions.

Some aspects of our life have to be put on hold from time to time to make sure we can get the next show together. I am constantly reminded of the theater law that as long as you look good when the curtain goes up, it counts! We put enormous effort into seeing that when the general public is let into the show, we are looking good. During the nine-day show at Mt. Sunapee, we have to hit the studio each night for matting and framing. We have to watch closely our stock of glass, foam core, mat board and assorted framing supplies.

Insouciance

Insouciance
The ebb and flow of our finances took a few years to get used to. Good feelings for our new work helps to inspire us to stick with it. January and February is our studio time and we do not take in any significant income. We try not to panic as we approach another show season. By the middle of August we have paid expenses and have begun to save for the show fees for another season. Our time is booked a year ahead.

Since we are now parents, we have other demands on our time. Kendra is a good traveler. She has some friends, kids who are also on the show circuit. She likes to help in some way or another while we are setting up. For instance, she likes to dust everything with a feather duster. She has adapted to eating at restaurants. She likes it if we can find hotels with swimming pools, and she seems to respond well to the thousands of people that she meets each weekend. She visited her first show when she was just seven days old. By her third week, she was doing shows with us full time. She has done over fifty shows in her two and a half years. Many of the shows have children's activity areas where she can paint and make things with the other children who are there. I think she must be developing an advanced sense of design from her experience.

 

Beginning | Early Goals | The Studio | Customers
Working Together | Images & Influences | Family & Business