Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Is I an Artist?

There's a thread on the Etsy forum about how people who make their own beads can be dismissive of those who "just" assemble ready-made components into jewelry. The consensus was that it takes a good eye and a lot of creativity to put together a beautiful, unique piece of jewelry.

I sometimes feel like I'm a rung below someone who makes jewelry, because I really just "string beads". I don't even use headpins. I do have to be able to count to ten. Other than that, I just choose two kinds of beads to put together... and what spacing beads to use... and which center and cross. The one thing I do that may be technically more difficult than making jewelry is getting the tension just right when making the second attachment to the center. Most jewelry doesn't involve a "closed system" like that, where the ends can't be adjusted separately.

Another consideration with rosaries is usability. How much space is needed between the beads and how is that affected by different sizes and types of beads? I'm working on one now with narrow beads where color contrast becomes an issue in telling where one bead ends and the next one begins. The fact that I like to use all different sizes and shapes and types of beads makes usability more challenging - and more fun. Not huge decisions in the broad scheme of things, but they at least make me feel creative.

I like the line some of the jewelry makers use when someone at a craft fair comes out with, "I could make that." The reply is, "Sure, you could, but will you?" Not only will you put the pieces together, but will you take the time to hunt for the best pieces to be put together?

Here are a few of what I consider my more "artistic" pieces - these all happen to be Franciscan Crowns. Clicking on a photo will take you to more photographs and a description:

1 comment:

  1. You are an artist! String beads is like a symphony, This is how I look at it as well while I am working on a new piece. The finish outcome is your opus.