Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Red Jewelry for Valentine's at Lansing Art Gallery

So I had a big long blog post about this set, and then I lost it trying to edit out something in the code. Lesson learned, Jenny can't play with code.

I did get this little red and gold set finished for the Lansing Art Gallery so they have red for Valentine's Day.  I very rarely wear true-red myself, and to be honest, this was a push for me to get inspired by red.  Usually if you ask me to make something red, you'll get more of a cranberry or wine color. 


I decided to mix this with dark gold tones for a softer feel.  The only other color I can think to put with red at the moment is black.  Sometimes black and red are a bit too abrasive for me.


So back to my focus in finishing some pieces for photographing and exhibiting.  Which, I'm stitching a lot of red that was missing from my Halloween costume.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Three-toned Lariat Necklace with Pearls

I made a teal and black striped chevron necklace back in May of last year with the boom of chevron coming into the fashion world.  Liisa saw it and wanted something a little more versatile.  So we came up with this three-toned striped lariat in black white and grey.  This way she doesn't have to worry about matching the teal to what she's wearing.

When I made the original necklace, I wasn't sure how I felt about the pearls at the ends for the finish.  I think it's grown on me, but I like this finish better because I had pearls in all three colors for the accent.







Sunday, January 19, 2014

Bad news, but in a good way


The time has come for me to announce that I am no longer going to be an artist-member of Grove Gallery and Studios starting February 2014.  It has been a long run, as I have pointed out, I have been with Grove for longer than I have been married.  :)  Grove has come such a long way in the past 6 years and I feel confident that it will be just fine without me.

I came to this conclusion through the bustle of holiday this year.  I've been feeling like I have 4 jobs, which makes me feel schizophrenic.  I am first and foremost an artist which is 2 huge jobs: creating (the fun part) and then the office-stuff (marketing, applying to exhibits, grants, residencies, meetings, etc).

Second is my part-time job at Speaker Law Firm.  I love this job because, well, Liisa is super-supportive of my artwork. She is flexible when I am out of town or busy with art-related things and also, this job keeps me on a "normal" schedule and work stays at work.  I very rarely have to worry about it my other 5 days a week.

Third has been my commitment to Grove Gallery.  It's more than just 6 hours a week, it's running a small retail business, helping keep it open, meetings and opening receptions.  As much as I have been trying to back out of as many responsibilities as I could, there was still this looming sense of guilt of not making it to all the receptions and needing to stay on top of general tasks as the Gallery.

Fourth is, well, being married.  Zack and I have such busy schedules that sometimes it doesn't feel like we see each other week to week.  So I have been trying to keep more of my weekends somewhat flexible to work on the house (currently an overhaul of the master bedroom), or just spend time with him.  Being an artist is not a "normal" M-F, 9-6 job. Teaching, helping run a gallery and trying to stay up on others in the art world with going to receptions and meeting with colleagues often makes it hard to keep weekends open as it is.

As sad as I am to be leaving Grove Gallery (and as I have told them, for now, I might be back), my art career is changing a lot and I am going in some different directions.  All extremely positive changes.  I am teaching many more workshops.  I have galleries asking me to give them my work to carry, and I am having the "problem" that I am getting into almost all of the juried exhibitions that I apply to and therefore am very low on fine art to continue exhibiting.  I want to be making more fine art, I have so many pieces in mind that will take me months (years?) to create that I'm feeling behind.  I am setting my jewelry-making on the back-burner. I'll still have 3 galleries carrying my jewelry, but I won't be in full-production mode to make stock.  Exhibiting and building my resume have become a current passion of mine.

Zack has been encouraging me through all of this: fine art is about the creating work, bodies of work, new work. It takes time not just because of my medium, but because not every one of my larger works is going to go over amazingly well.  It's about the creative process on a lot of levels.

So January is my last month at Grove and I will be attending the Gallery opening on the 2nd because the latest show is so cool and I want to meet the artists.  So I hope to see you all there.


Thursday, January 9, 2014

Gypsy Leaf Bracelet and Earrings


Recently I had the unfortunate task of having to shop for a new car. I had hoped that the Blue Mongoose (my Ford Focus Wagon) would hold out another year or so, but we were going to the repair shop with more and more frequency.  So, car shopping I went and after much debate, I really fell for the Ford Explorer in the color Ginger ale Metallic.  I found one in our price range, and I now have a 2012 Ford Explorer named Gypsy.

  
I was really into this particular color once I found this car. I also happened to buy two tubes of beads in this color when we were in Naples Florida on our most recent road trip.  So I decided that the color scheme for the large leaf bracelet that I had been thinking of making would match Gypsy, the new ride.


I made a pair of earrings first, which have a black vintage bead as its accent and then went on to making leaves for the bracelet.




I had imagined this bracelet clasping together in a different manner, but I tend to let my pieces take their own shape.  As this bracelet came together I really loved how the leaves fanned out at one end.





Monday, January 6, 2014

Weaving during the Holidays


I took some time over this holiday to finally wind this warp on to my loom.  It has been threaded since August but I just haven't gotten to getting the darn thing on.  I had originally planned out this yardage for potential fabric for the Mary Sue Fenner Jacket workshop that I took at Michigan League of Handweavers Conference this summer.  I just never quite got to finishing it, partially because I was stuck dyeing extra black weft and ran out.  So it sat, partially threaded on my loom.

The warp on this fabric is leftover rayon from my days at the University of Michigan Art School.  I was always playing with dyes and colors so I had a ton of balls of rayon that I've been lugging around from apartment to apartment and now to home.  I figured it's make a nice striped blend with black and I could make some room in my yarn stash.

Actually, just weaving off fabric has been somewhat relaxing.  I have a difficult time during the holidays, mainly because of the complete lack of structure in my schedule and having to pack up and keep moving. I haven't touched my beadwork.  We've been getting our master bedroom and closet built/painted/carpeting pulled and windows stripped and repainted.  It's left little time for creativity and entry applications.

For now, being able to throw a couple shots of weft here and there as I walk in and out of my loom room gives me a little peace, a little bit of structure in my life until schedules get back to normal.  I thought that this was the week to be back on-schedule, but due to "Snowpocalypse" I can't get to the office, my husband is home and I'm sorting out a to-do list. Which includes building a snow fort.

Halloween, Earrings and Kittens (oh my)

Wow, I've been so busy that I haven't had a minute to blog and take photos.  Mainly I've been working on fill for galleries f...