The survey you're going to fill out is one of a handful I’ve created over the past 25 years, each one of them important for documenting your personal experiences in collecting. This is probably my last one, and it’s going to cover new territory . . . YOUR history as a collector.
There is more than one way to get the survey back to me. You can print it out, fill it out, scan it, and email it back to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can copy it and paste it into a new .doc or .rtf format then fill it out, save it and attach it to an email you send to me. You can also print it out, fill it out and send it to me 'snail mail" - email me for my address (I don't want to post it here) Lastly, if you are reading this but like doing things the old fashioned way...send me your address and I'll send you a hard copy of the survey for you to fill out and return by U.S. mail.
Your name is not important – if you want to share it, that’s up to you. If you don’t want to answer some questions, leave them blank. If they don’t apply to you, write “N/A” (not applicable). What’s important to me is that you share your experiences and history with me “as a person who calls themselves (or whom others may call) “a collector”. No other qualifications are required ☺ Just fill in all the blanks you can!
Participate in my Collectors Survey!
1. I am (for the purposes of this survey only) ______male ______female ______ other, and as of today ____years old. I was the ___ only child or oldest/middle/youngest (circle one) of ___total number of ____brothers ____sisters. I grew up in ___the U.S. ________ country and currently live in ___the U.S. _____________Country (outer space not an option, sorry).
2. Looking back, I have been collecting (something) ___ All my life ___ Starting when I was _____
3. I call myself a collector ___without reservation ___with hesitation/if I must ___ only compared to others who aren’t ___because others tell me I am, or think so
4. Areas of collecting interest – starting with the your first (since childhood). Just list them all, whatever they were and are now. If you need more space, extend the lines or write on the back ___________________ _____________________________ ___________________________ ___________________ _____________________________ ___________________________ ___________________ _____________________________ ___________________________
5. Now go back, and number your interests (in question 4 above) so that they are in chronological order . . . starting with #1 to indicate
“earliest thing I collected” and so on to the highest (same) number to indicate “things I collected most recently, or still collect”
6. When I think about things I collected for the longest time, or still collect, it’s because (check as many as apply) they are: ___ most fun ____ could afford it _____ readily able to find new pieces ______ opportunities to buy, trade and sell _____ knew others, had friends who collected _____ there were clubs, organizations, conventions ________ easy to display, exhibit, live with ____they had the highest asset value ____Other (Explain) ______________________________________________________________
7. When I think about things I used to collect, but don’t actively collect anymore, I stopped because I (check as many as apply) ___ lost interest ___ couldn’t afford it ___ couldn’t find ones I wanted ___ ran out of room ___ my friends (spouse, family etc) disapproved ___ no opportunities to buy, sell or trade ___ ___ no clubs, organizations, conventions ____hard to display, exhibit ____ had to sell ___Other (Explain) ______________________________________________________________
8. Thinking back over the years, I really enjoyed collecting __________ the most and _________ for the longest time.
9. Speaking of things I collect, I would say my greatest focus/primary collecting interest today is ___________. If you were to ask other people, they would ___ agree ___not agree.
10. How far along are you in building your primary collection? Would you say you are ___still beginning ___ pretty well along __ just looking for a few/rare items ___finished
11. What year did you start this collection? ____ Are you active in the field today? ____ (Y/N)
12. Do you know exactly what you own? ____ (Y/N/Sort of) Do you keep records of every purchase/sale/trade etc ____ (Y/N/Sort of) Do you know the current market value of your collection? ___ (Y/N/Sort of) Do you care about any of those things? ____ (Y/N/Sort of) Do you think it’s important to do and know those things? ____ (Y/N/Sort of)
13. ___I like ____don’t like to tell, talk about or show other people what I collect. ___ I tell ___sometimes tell ____ never tell anyone where or how I acquired something and ___I tell ___ sometimes tell ___rarely tell _____never tell anyone what I have paid.
14. Whatever I am collecting today, ______% of the collection is displayed in some fashion, where I live. I use _____display cases _____hang on wall _____on stands/pedestals _____other (check all that apply)
15. I have used the services of a restorer on occasion ____ (Y/N). I have used the services of an appraiser on occasion ____ (Y/N) I have used the services of a framer, cabinetmaker, et al. on occasion ____ (Y/N)
16. Speaking of my primary collection(s), my main sources for acquisitions are/were (check all that apply): ___ other collectors ____ maker or creator of the object _____ dealers ____ galleries or shops ____ auctions _____ conventions, shows, exhibits _____flea markets, estate sales, similar Other (describe) ____________________________________________________________
17. Speaking of my primary collection(s), my main method and process for acquisitions are/were (check all that apply): ___ in person ___ online ___ phone, and ___buying and/or ___trading. Other (describe) ____________________________________________________________
18 Speaking of my primary collection(s), my main sources for information and learning about the field were (check all that apply) ___dealers ____gallerists ____creators/makers ____ other collectors ____ books, articles ____ school/classes Other (describe) ____________________________________________________________
19. Speaking of my primary collection(s), my main sources and method for de-acquistioning (pruning, downsizing, refining) are/were (check all that apply): ___ dealers ____ auctions _____ charity ____ other collectors ____ family/relatives/close friends Other (describe) ____________________________________________________________
20. Speaking of my primary collection(s) today, I will ultimately ___ be buried with it ___ give it away ___sell it __ have no idea what I will do with it
21. Taking a moment to give it thought, and assuming burial with your collectibles is not really an option, your preference would be: ___dispersal ____ keep the collection intact, and this would most likely happen ____before death or ____ after death and the method(s) would be (check all that apply): ___ private sale ____public sale (estate sale, Craig’s list or similar) ____ public auction (online or auction house) _____ charitable donation (organization, institution, etc) ____ friends, family _____to heirs Other (describe)
THANK YOU FOR SHARING YOUR THOUGHTS WITH ME!