Bonsai Economics and Creativity

Michael Hagedorn

As wonderful as it is to see highly managed bonsai using the latest techniques, in expensive antique or modern handmade pots, it can also be discouraging. Especially if you don’t have the means to get that skillset training or to buy those lovely pots.

We see, for the most part, results from wealth-produced bonsai at the top of Facebook or Instagram feeds. And they’re beautiful. In collaboration with others I’m a part of that, and proud of those efforts.

But if you don’t have that kind of money, don’t lose heart. Invention isn’t owned by money.

I know a bit about what I’m talking about here. When I was a potter I got familiar with frugal thinking as a way to spur creativity. As a sculptor I worked with found objects a lot. It was convenient to say I liked them, though at the time I didn’t have many affordable…

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