Meet the Designer-ArtistWhere do you live?
Describe your artistic style.
Freeform naturalist--okay, I made that up, I don't really have a style. I just try to re-create an image that makes a ''wow'' impression in my mind.
What inspires you as a designer-artist?
Nature--especially when she's wearing spring and summer colors.
What materials do you most enjoy working with?
Natural stuff--wood, horn, shell, gemstone, metals, glass. Shiny, sparkly, colorful, treasures from the earth.
What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
Old Weeping Cherry--An old tree in an orchard. It was broken and falling down from years of heavy harvest, but still beautiful, graceful and loaded with cherries. I wanted to keep it that way always.
How did it come together?
This tree has been in my head for over 15 years. I finally started it and it seemed to shape itself. It took almost nine months to make.
Share Your Background:When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading?
I remember stringing beads in grade school. I must have liked it; my mom got me one of those small wire bead looms, and it turned into a life-long habit, oops, I mean ''hobby.''
Do you have an artistic background?
No, I have a curious background. If something intrigues me, I just have to make it myself--but my way!
How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®?
In a beading magazine, which led me to an internet investigation.
Do you belong to any beading societies or beading groups?
Nope, don't have time. I'm too busy feeding horse, dogs, cats, goats, geese, ducks, chickens and one rotten ferret named Sami. And then I gotta clean up after them.
What other hobbies do you enjoy?
Raising critters, woodworking, fishing, rock hounding, driving, pictures, traveling the world on my laptop, craft fairs, renaissance fairs--yep I dress up--a wench one day, a pirate the next--how much fun is that?!
Beading Success!What role does jewelry-making play in your life?
It takes care of the compulsive need to be creating something. It allows my imagination to fly free, it's satisfying and fun--usually.
If you use jewelry-making as a way to bring in income, how are you selling yourself and your jewelry?
My hands don't work well enough to make a living at this--I'd probably starve.
Do you participate in any charity fundraisers?
Not many yet; I've donated jewelry to animal shelters for fundraisers and raffles for other pet-related events.
Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists?
You have to practice your craft, be willing to learn/evolve, and do your own thing--it will show in your work.
View all of Karen's designs in the Gallery of Designs.