Sunday, February 20, 2011

Understand


In my everyday cycle of working with metal in the shop I often struggle between creating handmade, thoughtful pieces and how to place value on such things. I'm not speaking about motorcycle parts specifically, just work in general. If I were to use the normal formula of figuring out the monetary value of work (materials+consumables+time=price) my work would be really pricey. I may not be getting rich doing what I do but for now I'm just grateful to the customers that support my small company and feel lucky that I have the use of my hands and mind. I was reminded of Picasso's napkin story by a good friend of mine that made me think and smile. The story goes like this...

Picasso was sitting in a Paris cafĂ© when an admirer went up to him and asked if he would do a quick sketch for him on a paper napkin. Picasso politely agreed, did a quick sketch and handed back the napkin — but not before asking for a rather large amount of money. The admirer was horrified: “How can you ask so much? It only took you a minute to draw this!” “No”, Picasso replied, “It took me 40 years”

3 comments:

jmassic said...

Figuring out what to charge for any service is hard, especially when you are relatively new to getting something going. My wife and I are both teachers, she teaches architecture and mechanical drafting, and I teach welding. We both have been approached on several occasions to use our talents for friends, family, and strangers. We have always struggled to find a good price to ask. But one thing is for sure when you are good at something, and you do that for a living, charge what you need, it'll be worth what ever that is. For the short time I have been following your blog I have been blown away, truly talented. Good luck my friend.

Washingstonian said...

You might not ever receive the compensation your quality, innovative craftsmanship deserves, but you will always have your self respect and integrity. I just saw a "Hair club for men" chopper on Discover Channel. Your talent is worth way more than all the crap you see clowns bolting together. Thanks for inspiring on a daily basis...

onewayride said...

People who make do with what they have to the best they can will not always know what kind of impact they have made on a single person, of if they ever did. From one person on the opposite side of the globe to another, Thank you for taking the time to share your talent. Really.