While I don't make many mixed media or found object pieces, I truly admire those folks that do. I think the way my work reflects this trend is that I like the metal and how it can be manipulated to be showcased instead of just acting as a frame for gems or stones. Found objects are beautiful to me because of the mental and emotional processes they evoke. This is another form of simile and its close friend, metaphor. I'm hoping that the forms in my work are just as evocative. I use basic shapes in my work that can be thought of as somewhat industrial, because I like the contrast between that perception and the flowing organic lines in the work.
What keeps you motivated?
The view from the window next to my work bench. I live in a beautiful wooded area with lots of wildlife, great neighbors, and more than a few redwood trees. I can enjoy my view because I work hard at sharing my art. I am blessed with both.
No modern artist who works in metal can deny Alexander Calder's influence and inspiration. Barbara Berk is definitely one of my personal inspirations too. Remy Heath of Studio Heath is definitely the artist who I emulate as far as writing tutorials goes. Her work in that area set a standard that I hope to continue.
Do you find the process of experimentation frustrating or inspiring?
Experimentation is probably one of the most inspiring processes any of us can participate in, if we open ourselves to honest criticism from within. When you step back from an experiment and critique it from a kind, gentle, honest, and informed place you cannot help but be inspired to create more and better works. Making a doodle out of beads or wire eggs me on to create something that has more substance. My first clasp was a doodle....and look at me now!
You are quite active in the online jewelry design community. How important do you think it is to embrace online selling, promotion and collaboration through platforms such as blogs, twitter, Etsy and forums?
If you intend to teach, embracing this media is imperative! I have contacted many customers and made many friends through my participation in online forums and blogs. I value my local students, but I could never have reached the audience I have now without the internet. I think all of the challenges involved in communication with people all over the world has made me a much better teacher, and hence, a better designer.
If you could have any jewelry super-power to help you with your jewelry what would it be?
I would LOVE to have the ability to take photos or video with my eyes while I work, and then burn them onto CD's. That way, all I would have to do is write copy for my tutorials - much faster!
My Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/31926529@N08/