Thursday, January 31, 2008

Hot hearts!

It is TOO cold today!  Luckily, I always have my torch to warm me up...   
Here's today's Valentine contribution - a pair of swirlie heart earrings just in time for the holiday!  Instead of the typical traditional filigree I make, these were made with less tradition and more of a fun, modern feel.  

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

For the love of Filigree...

Here she is!  I am so proud of how this heart pendant turned out - it took long hours of work, but it's completely worth it when I see this photo!

I use very old traditional techniques based possibly as far back as the Middle Ages to craft in the filigree style, and it takes more time to yield results that are authentic to the historical roots. I then apply the techniques to design pieces that have an Old World feel, but still strike a modern edge.  I get a wonderful satisfaction knowing that every single part of this pendant came from my own imagination!  From the sketch to the final polish, it's completely original.  

This weekend I have an invitation - only show to prepare for, another exhibition next weekend,  and I haven't even posted the heart to my website yet.  I love being this active, but it can sure be an interesting juggling act.  Back to work for now, more to post for later!    


Saturday, January 26, 2008

Chilly day, warm hearts

The day was frigid from the beginning, my breath hanging as tiny floating icicles in the air.  If I were to toss a cupful of hot water out into the cold, it would have frozen before hitting the ground!  The only saving grace was intensely bright sunshine - almost enough to make me forget the sub-freezing temperatures.  

I planned a lot of work for today, mostly clerical, although my metal is calling me.  Have you ever spent the day getting all kinds of things done and then looked back only to wonder what it actually was you did?  It's all the details of life, I suppose. :)  

I haven't worked my torch in a day and already miss it.  I've just finished polishing a magnificent heart pendant in honor of Valentine's day.  As soon as the photos turn out I'll post one to share.  It looks so romantic and feminine...  It's made of filigree, which I forged by hand and is probably my favorite technique of all.  I love all the delicate twists and scrolls!  Today it reminds me of the way the smoke curls wisp out the chimney.  My next project will most likely be a filigree letter opener that I just finished sketching out.

Time to curl up like a kitten and get some much needed rest.  Happy sleeping, and stay cozy!  

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Art show applications - yuck.

Anyone who's ever had to deal with this part of the art world knows how tough it can be.  While it's exciting to begin a new year, I do a lot of nail biting when I apply to juried shows.  I try to plan my schedule well but several really good shows are at the same time.  You never know if you'll get into the ones you really want, or if they all require fees up front with no refunds.  If I get accepted to all of them at once and then have to cancel all but my first choice then I could be out $1,000 or more.  And they're not free to apply to, either.  Some are as cheap as $10 per category, while others go as high as $50 or more.  Since I create both jewelry and functional metal pieces, my category cost gets doubled.  Blah!

With over 20 hours spent combing through applications and schedules, I've just about finished my list of 1st and 2nd choice shows.  Now comes the time to get photos and slides of all my new work and look for cohesive groupings.  Then it's off to paperwork land again!  

I have so many design ideas in my head that I try to at least get down on paper.  With all the "background" work that has to be done to make it as an artist I sometimes feel like very little time gets spent on doing what I really love.  *sigh*   I know that one day I'll be spending less time on the background; pay dues now, reap benefits later.  You definitely have to be committed to your passion to make something like this work.  I have that dedication!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

It's a new year and time for some new stuff in my life. Artists have a reputation of having such a hard time expressing written thoughts, as though that somehow takes value away from their art speaking for itself. I want to challenge this reputation, provide an interesting view into my work, and begin opening new doors in my life.