Marty Panzer

Marty Panzer

Crystal Lace
Fire Mountain Gems and Beads' Contest 2010
featuring Metal Clay, Metal Beads,
Wirework and Chain

Meet the Designer-Artist

Where do you live?
Rockford, Illinois

Describe your artistic style.
Paintings-Realism. Jewelry more metal than beads--would love to get my hands on some metalsmithing tools.

What inspires you as a designer-artist?
Nature and light. I love the way light catches on objects and try to play with it. Also, I am a former mechanical engineer, so I'm very detail oriented.

What materials do you most enjoy working with?
Silver wire and crystals. Also enjoying pearl and shell. I'm always experimenting.

What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
Crystal Lace

What inspired this design?
I wanted something airy with a lot of movement that would catch the light.

How did it come together?
Started out with the lacy edge, then I just filled the center with crystals. I suspended them on fine chain because I wanted them to look as if they were floating in mid air. Also, I'm a small person, so I like my jewelry to be on the delicate side.

Share Your Background

When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading?
I started in the late sixties, early seventies, but I got really serious two years ago because people don't have the money to buy my paintings right now.

Who introduced you to beading?
Wasn't everyone a hippy back then?

Do you have an artistic background?
I have been painting and doing just about every craft there is, as soon as I could hold whatever tool I needed to do it.

How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and BeadsĀ®?

What other hobbies do you have?
Painting, sewing, crochet, wood working.

Beading Success

What role does jewelry-making play in your life?
Part-time career hoping to go full-time along with my paintings when the economy is better.

If you used jewelry-making as a way to bring in income, how are you selling yourself and your jewelry?
I am in many of the local craft fairs and juried art shows.

Do you participate in any charity fundraisers?
Yes, I get a letter or call at least once a month to participate in a variety of charities.

Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists?
Just play with the materials and have fun. Nothing is perfect the first time and sometimes you might not want perfection. Imperfections can be much more interesting.