|Meet the Designer-Artist
Where do you live?
I live in Moscow, Russia
Describe your artistic style.
I can describe my artistic style as classic fine jewelry style.
What inspires you as a designer-artist?
A lot of things can inspire me: I love nature and flowers, birds and butterflies. Color combinations that you can find in nature are amazing. I like gemstones. And of course, music inspires me too.
What materials do you most enjoy working with?
I like seed beads, crystals, gemstones and other interesting materials that can be considered unusual, like beetle elytra and dried beetles.
What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
Manhattan Night Lights
What inspired this design?
One night I had a dream and when I woke up I knew I have to make this piece. In this necklace I wanted to show the water of the East River at night, the Brooklyn bridge and its lights, the skyscrapers glowing in the night and the sky. So there are three parts in this necklace which are clearly defined. It is a bold and spectacular evening necklace. And you can hear Frank Sinatra's song New York, New York! It's "king of the hill and top of the list" type of thing.
How did it come together?
I planned it out carefully. I chose the materials very carefully. The main color is black, but there are more than a dozen types of beads used. I drew the design; I carefully measured the neck part. Each bead had to fit in its place and it did! It was really hard work and there were technical difficulties. When I saw that something was not going as it should I redid it. Several times. Until everything fit.
Share Your Background
When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading?
I started making jewelry about 2 years ago. And before that I was doing pearl embroidery which is an old traditional type of embroidery in Russia (pearl frameworks for icons). Once I saw beaded necklaces by Sherry Serafini and was amazed at the possibilities that beads give an artist.
Who introduced you to beading?
Nobody in particular, I just saw bead works of other artists.
Do you have an artistic background?
I am a designer, embroiderer and a member of the Russian Union of Artists.
How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®?
What other hobbies do you have?
I enjoy flower growing and photography.
What role does jewelry-making play in your life?
Jewelry-making is my full-time career and it plays a great role in my life! My art is my life. I express myself through it.
If you used jewelry-making as a way to bring in income, how are you selling yourself and your jewelry?
I have a website; I sell my jewelry through the internet. I have some long-time clients, who buy from me regularly. And I participated in Bead Dreams 2011 contest. I took 3rd place in beaded jewelry nomination as well as People's Choice Award for my necklace--Manhattan Night Lights.
Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists?
Dream, work hard, set goals and do your best to achieve them. Educate yourself, try to do something new. And do your best to produce the best quality technically and artistically.
View all of Irina's designs in the Gallery of Designs.