Spirit of Egypt Fire Mountain Gems and Beads' Jewelry-Making Contest 2012 featuring Metal Finalist
Meet the Designer-Artist
Where do you live? Chicagoland
Describe your artistic style. Bold, contemporary mixed with classical elements, flirty, symmetric, appeals to all.
What inspires you as a designer-artist? Nature, other artists
What materials do you most enjoy working with? Metal, crystals, and stones.
What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story? Spirit of Egypt
What inspired this design? I was watching the civil uprising in Egypt at the time of creation.
How did it come together? Most of my pieces start off with a tiny glimpse of an idea I see in my head and I decide later what would pull it all together.
Share Your Background
When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading? I started bead weaving in 1988 at the age of 12, completely self-taught.
Who introduced you to beading? My best friend at the time had a few bead books and we decided to learn together.
Do you have an artistic background? I studied in high school and college for metalsmithing.
How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®? I've known about Fire Mountain before there was even internet. I think I got their catalog at a large gem and jewelry show many years ago.
What other hobbies do you have? I am just getting back into metalsmithing and working with precious metal clay.
Do you belong to any beading societies or beading groups? I am part of a local bead group and involved in many chainmaille forums.
What role does jewelry-making play in your life? I think about designs a bit much throughout the day. Most of the time I see an idea in my mind's eye and I can't shake it until it becomes something tangible. Making jewelry is a part-time career as of now because I am a stay-at-home mom. It's been my lifelong goal to make it a career. I am hoping for it to one day be a full-time career when the kids are in school full-time.
If you used jewelry-making as a way to bring in income, how are you selling yourself and your jewelry? I have a website: www.themetalmark.com I am also on Twitter, Etsy, and I have a Facebook Fanpage. I am currently participating in a local farmer's market one day, each week. During the winter months I will do some craft fairs. I enter contests when I find out about them. You never know when you'll be accepted as a finalist!
Do you participate in any charity fundraisers? I do support Autism Awareness and I would like to expand into more children's charities. I would also like to raise awareness about plastics and other pollutions of our oceans.
Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists? Don't ever think you aren't good enough or look at others as better than you and that you will never reach their level of expertise. We all struggle with this but put that demon aside and keep working at improving your skills to attain your goal. You can do anything you put your mind to.