Wednesday, June 27, 2007

YOJ Week 25 and preview of Week 26

This is the 2nd Lantern Jewel I've made, I call them Victorian bird cages, as that's what they make me think of.. Especially this one, with black crystals. I don't think I'm going to darken this one, I like contrast between the black and the whitish of the silver.

I made this piece in the hotel room last Friday night. It's kind of funny really, I was hammering away like at 11pm, and realized I wasn't home in my studio and I probably shouldn't be hammering away at 11pm in a hotel where I could possibly be keeping people up. I got so lost in the creative process I just wasn't thinking!! Fortunately no one complained so hopefully that means no one minded; I would hate to add to someone 's bad day or anything.

This is especially funny when I think that 3 months ago I didn't carry my hammer, block and wire to shows. I didn't feel comfortable doing wire work around other people, I only liked doing it in my own studio by myself. Now most art is sort of a lone occupation, it really doesn't invite company. You tend to ignore other people ( or the time! LOL) if you get into a piece. But it wasn't that absorption I was afraid of.. I just didn't feel competent to play with wire with others around. After all I've been doing this jewelry stuff for over 10 years, I have something of a reputation to maintain. I am somewhat like my name sake, a cat... if I make a mistake you will never know it.. because like a cat I am always on my dignity. (think licking the paws like nothing happened after a fall, that's me!) Well now I am either competent enough or I just don't care anymore, I just want to play. I love to have my wire with me, so if someone wants something alittle more complicated or a ring re sized, I've got my basic hammers, block, cleaning cloths, wire, and ring mandrels. I would carry all of my wire tools ( I am the proud owner of 3 different bracelet mandrels, and 1 neck, and new new texturizing hammers woo hoo!) but Jerry would kill me, he thinks I haul too much around at shows as it is. He's probably right, and I have to agree with him they are darn heavy. One time I wanted to take the tumbler to a show.. I think that's the closest I've been to divorce yet. So I settle for a couple basic sizes of wire, my favorite chasing hammer, block, and few minor tools.. whatever I can fit into 1 Plano box. (my normal equipment for shows: set of pliers/tools, full stock of crystals in 4mm and 6mm, a selection of bigger crystals, a "small" variety of other beads and findings.. and now my box of wire tools. It probably weights 50 lbs for my "just in case" beads and tools at a show. you never know what you will need, but you really can't drag your whole 400 + sq ft of studio with you!!)

Another habit I've really been working on is sketching whenever I get a good idea. Sometimes it's impractical, like at the $$ job, I'm sure my bosses just love me whipping a sketch pad out and telling the customer on the phone, "pardon me while I diagram this earring idea I just had, just takes a minute!! " Still I carry a pad in my back pack and on breaks and such I have been known to draw and doodle. Another strange thing: I've noticed some of my best ideas come to me while I"m either heading to, during or walking back from the bathroom. Not sure I want to explore the whys of this 2 closely, as I think it might reflect badly on my personally.. LOL. Still I was telling Jerry the other day I need to buy extra sketch pads and just leave them in the bathroom, to save the mad scramble of trying to figure out where I put the pad the last time.
My last show went very well, and just about my favorite part: someone bought Winter Queen's Crown (see )and was so enchanted with it she wanted a matching necklace and earrings. Oh how I wished I had all my wire stuff on me at that moment!! Not that working on that large of a project at a show is practical... fortunately she's very understanding and I'm to mail it to her when I'm done. It's all I've been thinking about this week, and it's been the main thing I've worked on ... I now have all the pieces flatten and I think I have the arrangement that I'm pleased with. Right now it's spending 2-4 hours in the tumbler. Since I will be adding pearls I pre-tumble. Tumbling with pearls is risky at best. Below is a sneak preview of Winter Queen's Crown II & III: I"m going to use it as my YOJ: week 26. I can't wait til next week when YOJ 3rd quarter starts... it invites lots of thinking about concepts and techniques so even when I don't follow the topic, it's a growth artistically. It feels soooo good to stretch muscles, artistic or otherwise!!

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