Jewelry designs mostly start in my journal or sketchbook. Lately I always carry both. The journal is filled with random rants, telephone numbers, grocery lists and Personal Stuff That Would Bore Anyone To Death. I tried to keep everything in one book, but I always felt guilty about scribbling names, book titles or other minutiae in the sketchbook with its *good* paper, and didn’t want to waste plain paper with serious sketching. I still have not solved this dilemma.
This sketch of mountains, hills, trees, rivers and grasses became a small design which I carved out of eraser material using linoleum carving blades. BronzClay (by Metal Adventures) was rolled out in a thin layer. The design was trimmed, dried, refined (sanded) and then fired at high temperatures in a specially designed kiln.
The oval medallion was riveted to a leather bracelet. I used teeny-tiny brass rivets that you might find in your local model railroading shop.
Not a day goes by that I don’t discover some gem of wisdom in the daily string of Facebook posts. This quote was definitely worthy of wearing on one’s wrist, so I immediately made it into a leather cuff bracelet.
There are horses everywhere here in Steamboat Springs. I designed this horse while I was in the lobby of Old Town Hot Springs waiting for my spa companion to finish his sauna. It will be a bolo tie when finished. The design needs refining and tweaking, but there will be plenty of time for that during the long cold winter days. Today we had our first snow and lighted a fire in the downstairs wood stove. Life is good!
Who do you think you are? Do you REALLY think you can compete with all those other [way more talented than you] artists out there? Your stuff sucks. And you didn’t even go to art or metalsmithing school. Why don’t you just give up now?
Each morning I go to my studio to make stuff. Often I hear these very words in my head. They are the words of the inner critic, which I have also identified as the jerky left brain (I’m re-reading Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain). These words are not conducive to working productively. Soon I’m drowning in a sea of inadequacy and depression. I didn’t send off that donation (if I did, it wasn’t “enough”) or do that favor or send that get-well card, or any of the other things on my “To Do In The Next Million Or So Years” list. Maybe I should just give up. But I’m a serial-maker of things. Even if I didn’t have bills to pay and food to buy, I’d be making things. When I’m sad, I want to make things as an antidote.
So my new mantra – motto – battle cry – is: ENOUGH.