CENTER FOR BEADWORK & JEWELRY ARTS
BEAD STUDIES
Discussion Notes

blog.landofodds.com

The purposes of the bead studies group are manifold, including to explore new methods of beading, to experiment with variations on traditional techniques, and to study culture-specific beading techniques. The group meets in Nashville, Tennessee the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays from 1-3pm.

If you are in the area, please join us in our discussions. There are no fees.

Current Bead Study Discussion Blog


HOW TO BEAD A ROGUE ELEPHANT:
WANDERING THE PATHS OF THE BEAD ARTIST – Cynthia Rutledge

The current study in 2004 and 2005 is of the evolution and
development of the bead artistry skills and insights of Cynthia
Rutledge. (Visit her web-site at: http://www.cynthiarutledge.net/ )

- Why is her beadwork instantly recognized as "art", when that of
others may not be?
- How is her beadwork similar and different from other bead artists?
- How does she use beads as art medium?
- How does the use of individual beads come together within forms?
- What does it mean to "organically finish" off a piece?
- Is the "stitch" merely a technique to tie pieces together, or an
artistic component of the piece?
- what kinds of knowledge/rules/insights are conveyed thru kits and
instructions to the student?
- Is "art" a function of the artist's personality, or can it be
learned and taught?
- Is beadwork "craft", "art", "architecture", "engineering" or what?

General Curriculum Outline:
A. Early Influences. Other bead weaving artists in the time frame
1990-1995. This incredibly energetic and emergent period culminated
in the establishment of Bead & Button Magazine.

B. Historical/developmental look at Cynthia's bead weaving projects
Project 1: The Garden Urn
Project 2: TBA
Project 3: TBA
Project 4: TBA
Project 5: TBA

C. Special Themes in Bead Art:
1. "bead" as art medium – used like paint? Like clay? Control over
interplay between light and dark?
2. focus on forms, themes, symbols – repetition? Placement? Rhythm?
Balance, coherence and coordination?
3. organically incorporating clasps and structural support systems –
to what degree are these a natural part of the whole piece?
Contribute to or detract from the piece?
4. dimensionality – can you achieve a true 3-dimensionality with
beadweaving? How? What keeps the piece from collapsing?

D. Developing Kits, Writing Instructions

E. Bead Art as Business Endeavor

F. Next Directions for Cynthia

G. 3 days of workshops with Cynthia in Nashville (Aug 2005)

In September, and for the next several months, we will continue with
The Garden Urn, as well as do projects from several bead weaving
artists who were an important part of the field between the years
1990 and 1995, leading up to the inauguration of Bead & Button
magazine. We will compare and contrast these projects with each
other, and with the work of Cynthia Rutledge. Some of the bead
artists we will be reviewing include:

Carol Wilcox Wells
David Chatt
Marcie Stone
Nan C Meinhardt
Alice Korach
Diane Fitzgerald
Sandy Forrington
Salley Gauthier
Sue Jackson and Wendy Hubrick
Virginia Blakelock
Carol Perrenoud
Wendy Ellsworth
Jeannette Cook
…among others


To do some on-line research on the artists above and for the time
period 1990-1995, go to a search engine, like Google
(www.google.com) In the search bar, type in the artist's name, and a
particular year. For example:
carol wilcox wells 1990

If you don't pull up exactly what you want, or are pulling up too
much information, you can narrow the search keywords a bit, such as
using quotation marks around the name, and adding more qualifying
keywords.
For example:
"carol wilcox wells" 1990 beads


Explore the various references to the artist's work. Identify:
a. Major projects/workshops done by this artist
b. Emphasis on which techniques, types of beads, types of
beading supplies/stringing material/ and the like
c. Are there project instructions that can be downloaded, or
found in a referenced book
d. What do you like or dislike about this artist's works,
approaches, choice of colors and shapes, use of themes or forms,
relationship of clasp assembly to the rest of the piece, wearability
of the piece, and the instructions/kit?
e. How does this artist and his/her beadwork compare to
Cynthia's early work, exemplified by The Garden Urn?
f. If you were tracing this artist's steps between 1990 and
1995, where would this place this artist at different times. Does
his/her pathway cross any of the other artists on our list?


You may also register for the BeadStudy group under Yahoo where
summaries of the discussions will be sent to group members, and you
may continue the discussions on line.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/beadstudy

I will be posting summaries of our Bead Study group discussions in
this beadstudy group.


Search for Marcie Stone:

On this keyword search: "marcie stone" 1992 beads

Results:
Beadwrangler's Tips & Techniques on Stitchery
... learned a great deal about combining fiber beads. ... After
seeing Marcie Stone's little embellished pine needle basket in The
New Beadwork(1992) by Kathlyn ...
www.beadwrangler.com/tips-stitchery.htm - 54k - Cached - Similar
pages

HandThoughts
... Stone Will Stokes Fran Stone Marcie Stone Loren Stump ... is
something powerfully evocative about beads that causes ... fine
book, The New Beadwork (1992), was written ...
www.handthoughts.com/Commentary1.html - 49k - Cached - Similar pages

[DOC] lkdfgjdlflkjfdg
File Format: Microsoft Word 2000 - View as HTML
... 4. 4 - O. Furniture Industry: Since 1992, the retail sales of
furniture items has grown at an average yearly rate of 4.2
percent. ...
planet.tvi.cc.nm.us/perkins/Artisan/ Artisan%20Cluster%20Assessment%
20%20Report%20.doc - Similar pages

On this keyword search: "marcie stone" 1993 beads

Results:
Web Stores
... Body Company Full service bead store since 1993. ... Beads
Specializing in Contemporary Lampwork Beads & antique ... art of
Lynn Merchant, Ana Garcia and Marcie Stone. ...
members.cox.net/sdsantan/storelinks.html - 71k - Cached - Similar
pages

HandThoughts
... Suzanne Stern Marcie Stone Will Stokes Fran Stone Marcie Stone
Loren Stump ... that there truly is something powerfully evocative
about beads that causes ... 1993. ...
www.handthoughts.com/Commentary1.html - 49k - Cached - Similar pages

Followed thru on Web Stores link. Found this information on this
link:
Shepherdess Beads
Specializing in Contemporary Lampwork Beads & antique & modern
seedbeads and workshops. Includes the current class schedule
featuring nationally known bead artists. Additionally, there is
retreat information and a gallery showcasing the art of Lynn
Merchant, Ana Garcia and Marcie Stone. Please register on the
website for updates of classes and other activities

Clicked on link to Shepherdess Beads. Found this link to a gallery
of her work and some biographical information:
http://www.shepherdessbeads.com/gallery/marcie_stone/index.htm

Of course, also found key information about Shepherdess Beads.
This store, begun in 1979, was EXTREMELY influential on the
development of contemporary beadweaving.
Delving further into this store and its role in beadweaving over
time is also an interesting study. What kinds of artists and
beadwork did they support, particularly in these earlier years?


Today, The Garden Urn kits were distributed to the group (Wed
afternoon group), and we elicited first impressions. We discussed
some of the bead weaving artists on our list, and began to compare
and contrast our first understandings of Cynthia's work and career
with that of other bead weaving artists.

First Impressions of Kit and Instructions:
- would prefer to have had images posted on-line of finished pieces
using each color palette
- clever case using video box
- the pre-selected colors takes away the chance to select your own
colors; go in your own directions; if you're going to spend that
much money on a kit, you want to get something that you can actually
wear
- Connie told everyone to follow the instructions, in the order
presented. Do exactly what she says; don't jump ahead
- the piece is a lot prettier than the image on-line
- some dissatisfaction with the mix of colors for the cranberry
palette
- some people in the group dislike kits; others like kits
- Kathleen had taken a doll class where the teacher painted the face
on everyone's doll; felt this took away from the workshop
- Some expressed that the project should be viewed as a learning
tool/experience; rather than needing to end up with something to wear


Bead Weavers, 1990-1995

Warren presented an on-line research strategy for finding out about
the various bead weavers on our list, and what they were doing in
the timeframe 1990-1995. He presented an example of the kinds of
information that can be pulled out about Marcie Stone. He found
her cited in a book; listed in a set of discussions about the theory
and practice of bead weaving; a link to her store; a link to a
gallery of her pieces. There are some historical references to
Marcie, and how she began to get into beading around 1979. Marcie
Stone and her bead store in California -- The Shepardess -- were
extremely influential in generating the underlying energy in bead
weaving.

The group discussed their understandings of the work and careers of
Cynthia Rutledge, Diane Fitzgerald, Nan C Meinhart and Carol Wilcox
Wells. Is there a commonality among bead artists, or is each one
representative of a distinctive style and approach?

Cynthia was characterized as focusing and loving the structure of
pieces. She's a natural sculptor and engineer. She plays with
tension and its management.

Diane was characterized on focusing on how things are done -- the
culture of the piece. Color, pattern, texture. How did the piece
come to be. Less concerned with structural underpinnings of pieces.

Nan C was characterized as very concerned with how a piece affects
the wearer and/or viewer. These is some concern for structure, but
it is not overriding. Likes assymetrical pieces.

Carol Wilcox Wells was seen as similar to Cynthia in a focus on form
and structure.

People in the group volunteered with whom they felt most alike.
Warren - Cynthia
Linda - Nan C
Connie - Nan C
Ellen - Diane
Kathleen - Diane, some Cynthia
Vera - Joyce Scott
Tracey - Cynthia
Ruth - no one

Connie said that a person's motivation to get into bead weaving was
also a critical factor. She said "color" motivated her. Vera
said "self-expression and a way to put my emotions into things."


The group had posed some questions for Cynthia at their last
session, and Warren had a chance to ask her these.

1. The group wasn't buying that fiber and beads were like apples
and oranges in her career. Surely fiber had more influence than
earlier discussions with her had suggested.

Cynthia:
Most of us have moved from medium to medium, and of course are
influenced by some things. In beading there are very few people
who have not done something else first. She was influenced by
color, style, design -- there was some crossover here, particular
with design. Quilts have similar color palettes. They have
intense designs. They are hand-stitched. They require meticulous
techniques.

When I was letting go of fiber arts, I asked myself, "Why do I need
the fabric? I can create my own w/beads." Beading seemed
more "free" to me to do what I wanted.

I used to use hand dyed thread and candle wick thread to string
things on. I would take the thread and embellish the fabric.

My focus is so much stronger with the beads.

I always liked to shape a jacket. I liked to work in areas of a
jacket to make it hold its shape. This is what I like the most
about sewing. I like to create shapes so they look super
professional and do exactly what I intended.


2. When you worked in a retail bead store, did any customers, in
particular, influence you -- positively or negatively -- in what you
do today?

When I worked in this store, it was just a job. I thought it was
interesting. It was fun to see people get excited about getting
supplies.

One gal who came in a lot (Ann Shafer) was from Maryland, and
visited California often. On one visit, she saw a necklace I was
wearing and asked me if I would like to teach that to her group. I
said yes, and ended up teaching at a major Mid-Atlantic fiber
conference.

Met Candace Kling - the Queen of Ribbon.

I was surrounded by diverse and creative people giving positive
feedback.

Retail was "seat of the pants".

At this time, beading was a "hobby" only. No indication to her
that it would be different than that.

The "change" came when people began asking if she could teach people
to do something she made.

No customers tried to mentor her.

This was the late 1980's, early 1990's. Beading was in its new
stages. Everyone was trying to learn whatever they could.

The store had a 60's/70's atmosphere.

3. Given the limited types of supplies available in 1990, did this
frustrate you, or did you make the best of what you had?

I was just happy to have black and white nymo thread. I colored
the thread with different colors of sharpies. I made what I had
work. I didn't know to think about more possibilities.

4. If you had to design The Garden Urn project today, would you do
anything differently?

The kits you will be working on are the 46th generation. The
first piece I ever did is owned by Nan C Meinhart. It was very
strawberry like.

Since the first piece, I've elongated it. I am better now at
instruction writing and controlling the stitch. The way it is made
now is much smoother. The shape, proportions are more satisfying.

----------

The group posed these additional questions for Cynthia:
a. What is your astrological sign?
b. What is the role of color in your work? How do you
balance "color" with "structure"?
c. What did you do in college? nursing?
d. If you took away the money and successful business aspects of
what you do, would you still be doing beading?


CENTER FOR BEADWORK & JEWELRY ARTS
Summary of Discussions with Cynthia Rutledge, June/July 2004

Below are summaries of discussions between Warren Feld and Cynthia
Rutledge in June and July 2004. We discussed some general ideas
and outlines about our year-long project, as well as some career,
artistic and bead weaving background information about Cynthia.


Cynthia has sewn since age 6. She was very much into fiber arts,
creating quilted and embellished panels for the backs of coats mades
from these panels. At one point in her life, she had an epiphany
that she liked beads better. She sold all her fiber and filled her
studio with beads.

Her bead weaving career was less influenced by any one person per
se, and more by a series of events in her life. While, as a
developing bead weaving instructor, she was close to other
instructors -- particularly David Chatt and Nan C Meinhart -- they
spoke more about the business of bead weaving workshops and
instruction, and less about the art of bead weaving in particular.

One of the first beadweaving workshops (around 1990) Cynthia took
was one with Joyce Scott. This peyote workshop was a grueling
class, but Joyce challenged Cynthia to succeed. Joyce gave her the
biggest push from the backside. Joyce gave her this advice at the
end of the workshop:
Do your own work
Don't look back
Don't follow fashion
Just do it

Cynthia was determined to make it as a bead weaver. At that time
(1989-1990), there was little in the environment to use as a
guide. There were no magazines. There were few books. The New
Beadwork book was coming out. Joyce Scott pushed 3-dimensional
pieces. Joyce was a technique person rather than a designer.

Cynthia took lots of workshops, and these were encouraging.

In her studio, she just sat there, played with things, lots of trial
and error. She went through Horace Goodhue's book on Native
American stitches. The "supplies" were different. Black and
white thread only. Sewing needles. Few choices of seed beads.

She ended up working in a bead store/knit store in San Diego. She
experienced the kinds of things that the customers were doing, the
various teachers that came and went. Got lots of input and
insights.

She became friends with Nan C Meinhart. The early beaders just
did it. They didn't think of it as a profession. Discussions
about "bead weaving" were few because there was a concern that, even
subconsciously, one artist might begin inadvertantly to pick up the
styles of another. Discussions were about how to do workshops,
issues of travelling, what was happening where when.

I enjoy the process. I don't think about how others would judge my
work.

Her earliest signature piece was The Garden Urn. This encapsulated
her major beadweaving/art/style themes:
3-dimensionality
peyote -- increasing and decreasing
structural supports
theme of nature

Key beadweavers influential in her early career:
David Chatt
Joyce Scott
Carol Wilcox Wells
Nan C Meinhart
Alice Korach

Transition to Business/Profession:

She met Alice Korach who founded Bead & Button magazine. In the
early 1990s, B&B did a call for entries of finished and unfinished
bead work in a San Diego alternative newspaper. Alice set up a
photo studio in a hotel room. There was a long line of artists
with their work. Cynthia waited there all day. This was the
beginning of Bead & Button magazine. (The first issue came out in
1994).

Cynthia monitored Bead & Button business success. If all these
investors felt they could make money with a magazine, then perhaps
Cynthia could make money thru her craft as well. B&B asked her to
come teach for them at their first conference. Cynthia passed her
portfolio around.

She was getting enough business that she quit her day job, and dived
into bead weaving full time. She went to Alaska in January to
teach. Her kits were not a thought at that time. She was very
focused on developing slides of her work.

Cynthia got into kits later on. The first ones were handwritten.
She had submitted a proposal to the Embellishment Conference.
Alice Korach told her that they couldn't print such a detailed
supply list. She also told her that the participants would be
unable to find all the pieces required in her projects. Alice
suggested she do up a kit. A beadstore owner friend helped her
organize these and get supplies.

Her kits were a hit with the participants. Cynthia liked the idea
that she could control the supplies -- so people could do something
pretty and so they could tackle a more complex project. The kits
also increased the earnings potential of her teaching, making
teaching more stable and self-sustaining. At first she only sold
the kits in association with the specific class being offered.

Today Cynthia creates her kits at the same time as she is
experiement with the beadwork. She has two groups that she
pretests these with.

Her husband was very supportive, and eventually he quit his job to
help Cynthia in her pursuits.


Today:

Beads and fibers (mainly in quilting and art to wear) was apples and
oranges. Her fiber work wasn't challenging. The exception was
color.

Beading is what I like.

I don't show any work in progress, if I can get away with it.

In the period 1991-1998, I had a big run on the theme of nature,
especially flowers. This gave her a good 3-D reference. She
lives in the middle of a forest and is an outdoorsy person.

Her newest work is based on historical work in beadwork, namely
Elizethan and Tibetan. She is very influenced by 3-dimensional
chaining -- components that move or twist around.

She stopped focusing on flowers, as flowers became more popular and
everyone was doing flowers. In 1991, no one was doing flowers.

Her work runs in clumps of 3 (series of 3 related projects).


Why haven't you written a book?

My kits cost up to $150.00. I don't think it's fair to see the
same thing in a $20.00 book. Unethical.

Also, I'd rather bead, than take off a year to write a book.


We've been impressed with her organic finishing off of each piece,
and the use of forms and themes within her pieces. To what degree
is this intentional, rather than intuitive?

Her first piece had a button enclosure. Finding buttons that "fit"
with the piece got harder and harder, and got very expensive. In
her grandmother's sewing box, she found "button blanks" that she
experimented beading around.

None of her newer pieces have manufactured pieces or, if they use
such a piece, that the piece is hidden.

The clasp assembly doesn't have to be in the back of the neck or on
the back of a bracelet.

She became interested in the work of metal jewelry artists, like
David Yurman and Thomas Mann. She liked their metalwork closures
and their use of riveting. She asked herself how she could
duplicate the sensibility of these pieces, using beadweaving.

When you teach, what kinds of frustrations are there?

Her regular students are used to my terminology and "clues" she
gives indicating a good job.

New students are somewhat intimidated by a 21-page instruction
sheet, as well as her reputation.

Her works looks more difficult than it is.

She pretests her new instruction sheets and her teaching approach
with 2 groups set up specifically for this purpose. Usually all
teaching or instruction kit problems are worked out in this
pretesting.



 

RE: [beadstudy] STUDY GROUP DISCUSSIONS SUMMARY, 8/18/04


HI WARREN...THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THESE 2 E-MAILS!...THEY WILL HELP ME REFLECT AND ABSORB!!!!!...EVER, E

>From: "oddsshop" <warren@landofodds.com>
>Reply-To: beadstudy@yahoogroups.com
>To: beadstudy@yahoogroups.com
>Subject: [beadstudy] STUDY GROUP DISCUSSIONS SUMMARY, 8/18/04
>Date: Tue, 24 Aug 2004 17:52:45 -0000
>


Tue Aug 24, 2004 4:11 pm


Show Message Option
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

View Source
Use Fixed Width Font
Unwrap Lines

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Ellen Sutherland" <ellenbolling@msn.com>
ellen37027
Offline
Send Email


Remove Author | Ban Author
[beadstudy] STUDY GROUP DISCUSSIONS SUMMARY, 8/18/04


Today, The Garden Urn kits were distributed to the group (Wed
afternoon group), and we elicited first impressions. We discussed
some of the bead weaving artists on our list, and began to compare
and contrast our first understandings of Cynthia's work and career
with that of other bead weaving artists.

First Impressions of Kit and Instructions:
- would prefer to have had images posted on-line of finished pieces
using each color palette
- clever case using video box
- the pre-selected colors takes away the chance to select your own
colors; go in your own directions; if you're going to spend that
much money on a kit, you want to get something that you can actually
wear
- Connie told everyone to follow the instructions, in the order
presented. Do exactly what she says; don't jump ahead
- the piece is a lot prettier than the image on-line
- some dissatisfaction with the mix of colors for the cranberry
palette
- some people in the group dislike kits; others like kits
- Kathleen had taken a doll class where the teacher painted the face
on everyone's doll; felt this took away from the workshop
- Some expressed that the project should be viewed as a learning
tool/experience; rather than needing to end up with something to wear


Bead Weavers, 1990-1995

Warren presented an on-line research strategy for finding out about
the various bead weavers on our list, and what they were doing in
the timeframe 1990-1995. He presented an example of the kinds of
information that can be pulled out about Marcie Stone. He found
her cited in a book; listed in a set of discussions about the theory
and practice of bead weaving; a link to her store; a link to a
gallery of her pieces. There are some historical references to
Marcie, and how she began to get into beading around 1979. Marcie
Stone and her bead store in California -- The Shepardess -- were
extremely influential in generating the underlying energy in bead
weaving.

The group discussed their understandings of the work and careers of
Cynthia Rutledge, Diane Fitzgerald, Nan C Meinhart and Carol Wilcox
Wells. Is there a commonality among bead artists, or is each one
representative of a distinctive style and approach?

Cynthia was characterized as focusing and loving the structure of
pieces. She's a natural sculptor and engineer. She plays with
tension and its management.

Diane was characterized on focusing on how things are done -- the
culture of the piece. Color, pattern, texture. How did the piece
come to be. Less concerned with structural underpinnings of pieces.

Nan C was characterized as very concerned with how a piece affects
the wearer and/or viewer. These is some concern for structure, but
it is not overriding. Likes assymetrical pieces.

Carol Wilcox Wells was seen as similar to Cynthia in a focus on form
and structure.

People in the group volunteered with whom they felt most alike.
Warren - Cynthia
Linda - Nan C
Connie - Nan C
Ellen - Diane
Kathleen - Diane, some Cynthia
Vera - Joyce Scott
Tracey - Cynthia
Ruth - no one

Connie said that a person's motivation to get into bead weaving was
also a critical factor. She said "color" motivated her. Vera
said "self-expression and a way to put my emotions into things."


The group had posed some questions for Cynthia at their last
session, and Warren had a chance to ask her these.

1. The group wasn't buying that fiber and beads were like apples
and oranges in her career. Surely fiber had more influence than
earlier discussions with her had suggested.

Cynthia:
Most of us have moved from medium to medium, and of course are
influenced by some things. In beading there are very few people
who have not done something else first. She was influenced by
color, style, design -- there was some crossover here, particular
with design. Quilts have similar color palettes. They have
intense designs. They are hand-stitched. They require meticulous
techniques.

When I was letting go of fiber arts, I asked myself, "Why do I need
the fabric? I can create my own w/beads." Beading seemed
more "free" to me to do what I wanted.

I used to use hand dyed thread and candle wick thread to string
things on. I would take the thread and embellish the fabric.

My focus is so much stronger with the beads.

I always liked to shape a jacket. I liked to work in areas of a
jacket to make it hold its shape. This is what I like the most
about sewing. I like to create shapes so they look super
professional and do exactly what I intended.


2. When you worked in a retail bead store, did any customers, in
particular, influence you -- positively or negatively -- in what you
do today?

When I worked in this store, it was just a job. I thought it was
interesting. It was fun to see people get excited about getting
supplies.

One gal who came in a lot (Ann Shafer) was from Maryland, and
visited California often. On one visit, she saw a necklace I was
wearing and asked me if I would like to teach that to her group. I
said yes, and ended up teaching at a major Mid-Atlantic fiber
conference.

Met Candace Kling - the Queen of Ribbon.

I was surrounded by diverse and creative people giving positive
feedback.

Retail was "seat of the pants".

At this time, beading was a "hobby" only. No indication to her
that it would be different than that.

The "change" came when people began asking if she could teach people
to do something she made.

No customers tried to mentor her.

This was the late 1980's, early 1990's. Beading was in its new
stages. Everyone was trying to learn whatever they could.

The store had a 60's/70's atmosphere.

3. Given the limited types of supplies available in 1990, did this
frustrate you, or did you make the best of what you had?

I was just happy to have black and white nymo thread. I colored
the thread with different colors of sharpies. I made what I had
work. I didn't know to think about more possibilities.

4. If you had to design The Garden Urn project today, would you do
anything differently?

The kits you will be working on are the 46th generation. The
first piece I ever did is owned by Nan C Meinhart. It was very
strawberry like.

Since the first piece, I've elongated it. I am better now at
instruction writing and controlling the stitch. The way it is made
now is much smoother. The shape, proportions are more satisfying.

----------

The group posed these additional questions for Cynthia:
a. What is your astrological sign?
b. What is the role of color in your work? How do you
balance "color" with "structure"?
c. What did you do in college? nursing?
d. If you took away the money and successful business aspects of
what you do, would you still be doing beading?

 


9/8/04

The group had had 3 questions for Cynthia, and I had a chance to ask
her these.

1. What astrological sign are you?

VIRGO


2. Did you go to nursing school or have some kind of degree?

I prepared to go to nursing school, but the school I was going to go
to shut down.

I decided to go to school to learn Interior Design. While I was
there a friend of mine who had an interior design business asked me
to help her. I did that for awhile, but didn't like the cut throat
sales aspect of the business. I never returned to school to finish
the degree.


3. If you hadn't been able to develop a successful business and
career doing beadwork, would you still be doing it?

(A resounding) YES!


The Wednesday group met on 9/15. Below is a summary of those
discussions.


Many participants in the group were concerned that the urn was lumpy
or dimpled, and were wondering if that was an intentional part of
the design, or a function of bad thread tension, or an inevitable
part of the design given the use of peyote and delicas.

Kathleen: The lumpiness is ugly. I stuffed mine with polyfill.
WF: There is a picture of the urn in Carol Wilcox Wells 1996 book.
That urn is much lumpier and uglier than the design we're working on
today. Kathleen, even though you don't like the dimpling, your
finished piece is very attractive.
Kathleen and Ruth: Problem ending the bottom. There is a little
hole (gap) in the bottom, and Ruth added an extra bead to cover
it. There are some gaps/holes because of the increasing and
decreasing. Some discomfort about how the beads are spacing out
towards the bottom of the vessel.

Questions raised if errors in instructions for:
Row 5 (p. 7)
Row 61. 1 stitch will not work. Ruth used 2 stitches.

Kathleen: didn't like the increasing/decreasing approach outlined
in the instructions. Cynthia's approach leaves spaces and holes.
Kathleen tried an approach similar to that outlined in Carol Wilcox
Wells book. This doesn't leave as many holes. But piece a bit
looser in tension.

Kathleen: The urn isn't as aesthetically pleasing as she would
like. An "unearthed" piece would be broken, not lumpy.

Connie: It's a useful exercise to go through the kit and mirror the
steps as the artist intends, in order to learn.

Barbara: Delicas are tubes, not rounded, so won't close up as well
in this type of piece. In her first try, the urn was a little
lopsided. She felt she had done her increases too much on one
side of the urn, and that made it off-centered.

Warren: I don't like these handles -- too bowed out.

Warren: If you go back to Cynthia's goals, she's achieved them.
If you compare this piece to the pieces shown in the early Bead &
Buttons, it's very spectacular in comparison. Cynthia wanted to use
peyote to create a 3-D piece that wouldn't collapse on itself.
Over the past 3 years, we've certainly seen how many 3-D pieces
don't hold up well. The color mixes as they appear in the finished
piece are much nicer than I originally anticipated from opening the
kit.

If you put yourself back to 1990, and view this piece in an
historical context, it's a very amazing piece. We have lots of
experiences and people and books to point to, in order to critique
the piece. But back then there wasn't much of anything that
Cynthia could have compared it to and learned from herself.

Kathleen: I don't like to embellish a beaded piece with sequins. I
did my own embellishment.


Warren posed as series of questions about whether The Garden Urn
should be considered a piece of art or a piece of craft.

Is this Bead Art or Craft?

Barbara: Art definitely.

Connie: There is too much thought in the piece to be craft. Look
at all the color choices.

Warren: Craft - follow steps to product object
Art - add intellectual/creative impulse
make piece "yours"
From the standpoint of the artist, this is art.
From the standpoint of the student, however, is this merely a craft
project?
Maybe the instructions diminish the artistic impulse. Kathleen
said she felt she hadn't learned something. She siad she would like
to learn how to interpret and do, and that I could learn to do and
manipulate stitches into something I'd like to create.

Barbara: My challenge is to follow patterns. I'm very intuitive.

Connie: But you had to be proficient before you got to that
point. Need to develop foundation.

Warren: I'm much less experienced, and this project is forcing me
to learn this in a more intuitive sense. But I'm getting that a
lot from the advice I get from you on how to proceed thru the
instructions.

Is the piece "art" if the instructions don't encourage the creative
impulse? There is no conveying of knowledge/rules in the
instructions to stimulate the "artist" in the person.

Connie: I think Cynthia has done a great job.


Has the Use of Beads/Stitching/Organic Finishing contributed to our
understanding of the piece as "art"?

We've already mentioned that the use of peyote, this particular
strategy for increasing/decreasing, and the shape of the delica
beads results in some dimpling, that many of us are not comfortable
with.

Barbara: I think it might work better using 15/0 seed beads rather
than delicas.

Ruth: Kathleen used a different type of increasing/decreasing
technique which left fewer holes and gaps. It makes the piece
softer and smoother, but the piece still holds up without collapsing.

Warren: In one sense, this stitchery and Cynthia's design for it,
is part of the reason this piece would be considered "art".


ADDING NEXT PROJECT TO OUR MIX.

Warren suggested beginning an early peyote project with increasing
and decreasing by Carol Wilcox Wells. The group discussed this and
decided to do the Cuffed Basket on p.130 of Carol's book called
CREATIVE BEAD WEAVING. For those in the group not working on
Cynthia's urn, or for those who might want to put the urn aside and
begin Carol's piece, this would enable us to compare and contrast
the two artists.


CENTER FOR BEADWORK & JEWELRY ARTS


James is at home gaining some strength back. He will need to have
some surgery done, but the doctor wants him to be stronger. But
most of this frightening episode is behind us, and I'm able to get
back to our Bead Studies.

Current Projects:
The Garden Urn by Cynthia Rutledge
Some folks are finished; others in the middle; others still at
the beginning. Suggestion to recreate part of the urn using
15/0's, and seeing if this changes any of our perceptions and
feelings about the piece and the strengths and weaknesses of the
techniques

Cuffed Basket by Carol Wilcox Wells
(p. 130 in her book Creative Bead Weaving)

Both of these are 3-dimensional peyote projects that use
increasing/decreasing. They use different strategies of
increasing/decreasing.
Issues about technique that we are exploring, include:
- one method leaves some gaps between beads, other method does not
- does one method create a stiffer, more structurally sound piece
- if we used seed beads, say 15/0s, rather than delicas, would this
change the points made in our discussions

I also want to start moving into discussions about two other bead
weavers who were important during the Bead Weaving period 1990-1995:
David Chatt
Nan C Meinhart

See if you can do some on-line research and some book research into
the backgrounds of these two bead weavers, especially around 1990.
What kinds of projects were they doing? What techniques were they
using? What workshops were they teaching? Can you find any
projects of theirs that seem to date from around that period of
time? Can you find copies of any of their instructions?

After these, I want to begin to cover Marcie Stone.

Next bead studies:
Wed, Nov 3 and Nove 17, 1-3pm
or,
Tues, Nov 2, 6-9pm


Warren



The link below shows a large picture of the completed garden urn,
plus some brief information about Cynthia Rutledge.


http://www.rddesigns.com/upload/ric/speaker.htm

Warren



I asked Cynthia why she thought David Chatt and NanC Meinhart, in
the early 1990s, switched from Peyote to Right Angle Weave, in their
emphasis.

She responded that David Chatt and Right Angle Weave were made for
each other. That stitch allowed him to express himself creatively
the way he wanted, and he pushed it to its limits. Peyote didn't
do that for him.

NanC Meinhart has explored many stitches, and mixing up stitches
within the same project. She particularly liked the Right Angle
Weave and to embellish with beads. Cynthia indicated that NanC's
background was in embroidery, and the RAW has a very fabric like
quality to it.

For Cynthia, the Peyote stitch is the most satisfying, and gives her
the best way to express herself.


In both these classes, we went over similar points, with a little
more detail on Tuesday evening. These notes combine the
discussions from both groups.

Summary of where we are:
1. Some are finished, some still working on, and some yet to begin
The Garden Urn. No matter what stage anyone is at, we have several
points of discussion:
- structural integrity: what keeps the piece from collapsing in on
itself
- technique: what differences do different ways of
increasing/decreasing have on the piece, it's structure and it's
appeal
- appeal: does the dimpling detract from the piece; would using
15/0 seed beads make a difference in the dimpling; do the gaps
between the beads, particularly near the bottom, detract from the
piece; is covering gaps between beads or dimpling with surface
embellishment a legitimate strategy or does it detract from the
piece as "art"
- bead as art medium: Cynthia offers a bead mix of mattes, glossy
and irridescent beads, to create a piece that feels "antique-y"; how
successful do we feel this is? has she made the most of the "bead"
in terms of colors, light, shadow, reflection?


Beading as we know it has come a long way in a short time.
The "mothers" and a few "fathers" of this field are few in number.
Their personality, ambition, creativity, determination have driven,
what had primarily been a homecraft, into an art form.

Joyce Scott was one of those individuals. Her recent show
cancellation by the Frist Center in Nashville was unfortunate, but
brings home a lot about her and her work. [The current issue of
The Nashville Scene has an article with lots of pictures of her
controversial work.] She visibly and provocatively challenged
the "peyote stitch" to achieve all it could be. Joyce Scott set the
stage for bead weaving workshops becoming artistic forces in their
own right. Her personality also was an influence on Cynthia.

Marcie Stone was a basket weaver who began to incorporate beads into
her work until beads became her work. This occurred in the late
1970s. She opened a bead store in San Diego, and
encouraged/sponsored/influenced/gave great visibility to many bead
weavers beginning their careers.

In the late 1980s, Carol Wilcox Wells had written a major book
summarizing many different kinds of stitches, and also giving
visibility to many of whom we consider "masters" today. She
concentrated on the peyote stitch. We're discovering some
differences in the approaches Carol and Cynthia took.

We know that the various bead weaving artists did not discuss their
work with each other. On the one hand, we think this is a "bad" --
we think of the synergistic effects each one could have had. On
the other, perhaps what we're seeing as differences in their work
may not have occurred. And we're seeing that these differences
have their effect on a piece's
- structural integrity
- general feel
- general appeal
- interaction between the piece, its structural tension, its appeal,
and the satisfying use of beads as the medium of art

It's sad there is not more documentation of how each artist started
and thought. There is so little discussion about similarities and
differences among artists in the magazines and books. There's no
discussion about how one person's peyote is not necessarily
anothers; how one person's right angle weave is not necessarily
anothers.

We're starting to look at David Chatt and NanC Meinhart. In trying
to do some background research on them, particular in the timeframe
of the early 1990's, I was struck how each had articulated very
similar goals. These goals were also similar to statements made
about the early careers of Cynthia and Carol.

Each artist wanted to achieve a STRUCTURAL INTEGRITY. Each wanted
pieces to be 3-DIMENSIONAL. Each wanted to achieve great VISUAL
APPEAL. They believed they could create ART WITH BEADS. They
thought they could make a BUSINESS out of their beadwork. Their
strategies for achieving and operationalizing each goal differed,
and began to take different pathways thru the 1990s and early
2000s. Each artist began in a different craft medium and moved into
beading.

Carol and Cynthia focused on Peyote. David Chatt and NanC Meinhart
began with peyote but moved to right angle weave. NanC seems to
work with several types of stitches.

In an earlier discussion with the group, we had begun to try to
classify the various bead weaving artists in terms of whether they
were structural or not. This was probably not the best way to do
this. Based on their statements, all the artists are concerned
with structure. However, they don't necessarily define it in the
same way. They don't create their pieces in the same way. And,
when they are forced to choose between the structural integrity of
the piece and its general visual appeal, where they cannot optimize
both, they seem to make these choices and tradeoffs in different
ways.

As we continue our exploration of 12 of these major bead artists, we
need to take some time and summarize them in terms of their stated
goals:
Structural Integrity
3-Dimensionality
Visual Appeal
Art with Beads
Viable Business
(and other goals as we begin to identify them)

Great, we have some categories. How do we discuss bead weaving in
these terms?

The discussion on Tuesday evening was largely around the "how" in
dicussing and artist and her/his piece. Do we treat the piece
as "architecture"? Do we separately evaluate the "inner skin" of
the piece from the "outer skin"?

Donna: If the piece is architecture, then the underlying structure
should have an inherent beauty -- it should be art in and of
itself. The outer skin is seen first and appreciated, but we must
also be able to appreciate the inner skin as well.

Nora: The real world is 3-D, and 2-D doesn't satisfy us as much.

Nora: The idea of embellishing over a flawed area doesn't attract
me. It feels almost like cheating.

Warren: I haven't done this piece, but NanC Meinhart's museum
bracelet seems to be a Right Angle Weave shell, with bead
embellishment creating the skeletal structure to hold the piece up,
and allow it to function as a cuff. Is this a legitimate strategy,
if we consider the piece as art and talk about structural
integrity? Again, I haven't done any of David Chatt's work, or
taken a class with him, so I'm speculating based on seeing pictures
on-line. His right angle weave, which is a very soft, flowy
stitch, has to be reinforced a lot to keep a shape. His pieces
seem layered with right angle weave, and embellished with additional
sections of right angle weave. What does structural integrity mean
in terms of his pieces. We thought Carol's peyote technique would
lead to a smoother, more appealing surface with fewer gaps between
beads on the Garden Urn, yet make the urn softer and more
collapsable. We thought Cynthia's peyote technique led to a less
appealing surface, but a tighter piece. While Cynthia presents
this piece as if it were an antiquity, we don't seem to be convinced
by that concept, when viewing the piece.

Why did David Chatt and NanC Meinhart switch from peyote to right
angle weave? Was it for business reasons and competition? Was
peyote already covered by people like Carol and Cynthia, and they
needed to find another viable market niche? Did they think they
could better achieve their goals of 3-D, structural integrity,
appeal, using right angle weave?

We have an image of peyote pin done by a woman who had taken a class
with David Chatt in the early 1990s. In the pin, David attempts to
achieve this 3-Dimensionality by varying the sizes and colors of the
beads. One area of the pin is predominantly one color and of larger
beads; a second area is another color and a medium size bead; a
third area is yet another color and a small bead. If we compare
this pin to a recent African bracelet of his, where he used right
angle weave, he's used the RAW to achieve so many more possibilities
of 3-Dimensionality.

If the goal is 3-D and structural integrity, to what extent is
embellishment and surface treatment legitimate techniques toward
this end?
- outer vs inner skin?
- can you appreciate the piece as a whole separate from its parts or
sections?

Nora: Embellishment is not cheating if done as an integral part of
the piece, even when used to tighten up the stitch in areas of the
piece. But I'm uncomfortable if used to cover flaws.

Nora: Does the intrinsic value of the piece result from how perfect
it is or how pretty it is?

Warren: we need to experiment with Garden Urn, and use 15/0 seed
beads to see if we can better achieve perfect and pretty

Nora: whatever the artist does, there should be an underlying
intent. Whether it is add-on embellishment or creation of a base,
or the outer skin or the inner skin, it should reflect the artist's
intentions.


Use of Bead as an Art Medium
The Garden Urn: mix of glossy and matte to make it look old, with
worn off glazes in spots.
WF: I think it's the right direction, but still not 100% satisfying
to me. My mind doesn't want to see a random mix of wear and tear;
I think some areas of the piece as an antiquity would be worn and
others not.

Issues of color blending.
When you look at Cynthia's, Carol's and David's pieces, you get an
immediate and powerful sense of color/light and its control using
beads. We don't get that same sense of NanC's; however, we're
looking at photos and internet images. Barbara: Her pieces
achieve this goal better when viewed in person.

The Necklace Shape
Most of these early pieces seem to be an elaborate pendant piece
with a simple rope. The clasp assembly may be the same color, and
may be beaded, but not much other attention is given to this.

There is little thought given to the necklace in total. Little
thought about the necklace in and of itself, as a whole art form.

Should the closure be unseen and an organic part of the necklace?

Early ideas about closures:
- same colors
- button and loop
- closure "hidden" because it falls behind the neck when the piece
is worn

We looked at a couple of Marcie Stone's current pieces where the
necklace functions particularly well as a whole. There is a lot of
flow to these. Very organic. Visual design doesn't seem to dead-
end at the clasp. Barbara: she started doing pine needle baskets,
and these pieces have some similar sensibilities to the materials
and interwoven parts.



11/5/04

To Advanced Bead Study Groups

We are beginning to explore the work of David Chatt and NanC
Meinhart. There is a David Chatt right angle weave project in the
December 1997 issue of Bead and Button. It is to make a right
angle weave box or cube.

If you don't have that issue in your library, I have a copy in the
shop, and can make you a copy of the instructions.

This seems like a very simple project that goes to the heart of
answering how right angle weave can keep a solid shape.


Warren

___________

The Center for Beadwork & Jewelry Arts
A different kind of school...
Skills-Based learning, professional and elective curriculums
classes held at Be Dazzled Beads or James Jones Studio


718 Thompson Lane, Ste 123
Nashville, TN 37204

Phone: 615-292-0610
Fax: 615-460-7001
beadschool@landofodds.com
http://www.landofodds.com/beadschool/

Sign up for email class notices by going to:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/beadschool


CENTER FOR BEADWORK & JEWELRY ARTS

Discussion Summary, 12/1/04

At the end of the last Wed study group, Kathleen, Linda and Warren
discussed the work of NanC Meinhart and Cynthia Rutledge. The
discussion wasn't that long, but there were some pearls of wisdom,
and I'm sharing these below.

Warren: There's no "Wow!" factor for me in NanC's work.

Linda: Her work meets her own psychological needs. For NanC,
beading should be a psychologically uplifting experience for the
person doing the beading.

Warren: Cynthia mentioned a few times the meditative factor of
beading.

Linda: Therapy should be relaxing.

Warren: "Relaxing" -- seems to mean different things to NanC and
Cynthia.

NanC: If you are feeling, delving inward, picking colors, then this
process equals something that is very therapeutic and enhancese
creativity and the resultant product.

Cynthia: The repetitive steps in peyote and the process of fitting
the beads into each other, reaffirms a world view of beadwork as
structure. The outcome must achieve a high degree of structural
integrity.

Kathleen: Cynthia seems to want something to be aesthetically
pleasing to the world.

Linda: To NanC, it doesn't have to be aesthetically pleasing for
others, as long as it is in and of itself for the artist

Warren: You may not like her work, but do you recognize NanC's work
as artistic?

It meets the various conditions we've been setting up to describe
something as "art", rather than "craft."



Advanced Bead Study
Discussion Notes from Wed 1/6/05


We will be spending the next 2-3 months finishing our study of the
early (circa 1990) bead weaving artists, do a couple more projects
of theirs, and then return to Cynthia Rutledge's work.

Specifically, we will be reviewing the work of:
Wendy Hubrick and Sue Jackson
Virginia Blakelock and Carol Perenoud
Alice Korach
Sandy Forrington
Jeanette Cook
Wendy Ellsworth
Diane Fitzgerald

We will be doing the following two projects:
1. Wonder Beads by Wendy Hubrick and Sue Jackson
2. Spiral Vessel by Wendy Ellsworth

We will then turn to Cynthia's "middle period". Here she was very
influenced by the work of metalsmiths and wire artists, seeing if
she could duplicate the undulating and interlocking forms. We will
probably select 1 or 2 kits of hers, and people can choose 1 or the
other to work on.

We began our discussions by looking at some materials of these
artists, and bringing up personal experiences in taking workshops
from them, or working on one of their pieces.

We were concerned about evaluating their work in terms of :
1) Structural Integrity: what keeps the piece collapsing in on
itself

2) Technique: what difference does the technique have in the
success of the piece

3) Appeal: Do we like the piece(s) and recognize it(them) as "art"

4) Bead as Art Medium: has the artist made the most of the bead
in terms of color, light, shadow, reflection? To what degree does
the success of the project depend on the use of a bead? Could the
project be as successful if someone painted a picture of it, or
sculpted it in clay, or glued pieces of glass to a form?


WENDY HUBRICK & SUE JACKSON

Wonder bead.

Connie: Hard to do. Have to be precise. Mathematically based.
Very engineered. All of a sudden, you do one more step and the
piece goes rigid. You can be off 1 bead, and the thing will not
hold up.

Kathleen: I really liked Connie's wonder beads, but didn't like my
own. It was structurally sound in that it was nice and hard.
Artistically, it was not aethestically pleasing to me. Volume too
big; too clunky.

Connie: I didn't like the beaded beads in the Carol Wilcox Wells
books.

VIRGINIA BLAKELOCK and CAROL PERENOUD

Peyote stitch and loom

Barbara: A bead engineer and loom artist.

One of the first with peyote and loom as bead art.
Bad Bad Beads book
Twisted Fringe

ALICE KORACH

Warren: There's the project in the 1994 Bead & Button of a seed
bead embelleshed rope.


SANDY FORRINGTON

Picot Lace

JEANETTE COOK

Connie: Good books for beginners

Barbara: Very geometrical in what she creates. She combines
beads in geometric patterns. I think she's an artist. Tight
tension. She used to work on circuit boards in electronics.
Great attention to detail.

She gets inspiration from things she sees on TV, in galleries,
magazines, artwork. Then she finds some synergy among her ideas
and materials and creates something uniuqe.

Kathleen: Great sense of color. Daring, bold. Pieces not always
wearable.

Barbara: She learned peyote from Joyce Scott.

Kathleen: real innovative clasps -- beaded clasps.

Her teaching style is opposite to that of Diane Fitzgerald. Broad
generalities. Not as helpful.


Mixed media approach
A lot of her work is freeform.

Warren: how does everyone feel about the use of mixed media?
Detract from the beadwork? Is the wire in her work the "structural
support"?

Barbara: Her freeform peyote is self-supporting. The wires are
embellishment. She gets A+ for structural integrity.

WENDY ELLSWORTH

Barbara: Gets a lot of ideas and inspiration from approach of
Jeannette Cook. Again a lot of unique synergy of ideas and
materials. Major ideas in the increasing/decreasing with Peyote.

Warren: She seems more successful in her execution than Jeannette
Cook.

DIANE FITZGERALD

Connie: She doesn't work dimensionaly. Her necklaces have
structural integrity.

Barbara: She does tubes, flowers that are dimensional. These have
lots of structural integrity.

Connie: Her main emphasis to tie historical work to her work.
Beading on the threads, instead of going thru the beads.

Warren: Structural Integrity: Diane seems to focus on how each
piece/element links to next piece/element. No rush to finish off
the piece. Her designs seem to make people want to go all the way
around the piece -- whether to view it or do it. This is a
major "test" of successful design.

Kathleen, Connie and Barb: very complex color blending

Paisley: increase and decrease with brick stitch


Warren: She has a bead-by-bead focus. Maybe this equates to why
she is such a great instructor. Other artists seem to go line-by-
line or space-by-space, and they don't seem to teach as clearly, in
comparison.

How would other artists approach the paisley? How would they
explain their approach? How would they visualize this?

Connie: Diane conveys a thought process; others give you a project.


2/24/05

Just a quick note about our next Cynthia Rutledge Projects, and the
August Workshops.

Warren

NEXT PROJECTS:
We'll be working on two of Cynthia's "Mid-Career" projects. You
can do one or both, or just participate in our ongoing discussions
without working on either project.

I will need to know from you if you want me to order either or both
of these for you. As before, Cynthia is extending a discount for
our group.

1) Celtic Garden Necklace
http://www.cynthiarutledge.net/workshops/n-celticgarden.htm

There are 4 color palette options. Unfortunately these are not
pictured anywhere, so you'll have to use some creative visualization.

a. True fuchsia and red
b. Black cherry and reds and white
c. Lavender and white
d. Peach and white

When Cynthia was in Ireland, she asked the locals what things were
very "Irish" and they said fuchsia flowers.

In this piece, you will:
- layer a piece of beadwork and build out from there
- the challenge is in creating the scale and proportions to make the
piece look like a real fuchsia flower
- make components and stitch them together to create the 3-D flower


2) Romancing the Lariat
http://www.cynthiarutledge.net/workshops/n-romancelariat.htm

This projects comes in 6 different color palettes. There are some
general images of the piece with different colors on-line.

a. lavender, roses, soft greens (available around 3/21)
b. blues and greens (available now)
c. periwinkle, lavender, turquoise, lime, bright colors (available
now)
d. white, greay to lavender and purple (available now)
e. pale to dark blues to pale and dark reds (available now)
f. autumn colors (available around 3/21)

This piece was influenced by Cynthia's participation in a Mid
Atlantic Fiber Conference. Lots of people were doing some
incredible weaving and achieving some wonderful, organic coloration
effects, esp. color blending. Easy to achieve with fabric dying,
but difficult with beads.

In this piece, you will
- do a lot of color blending and color gradations. Each palette
consists of 24 separate colors.
- some taste of 3-D work, but nothing complicated
- stitching is simple, but allows the colors to move around the piece


ALSO, in preparation for our discussions, you may want to look up
and download some images from various metal artists on-line, but
particularly
David Yurman
http://www.davidyurman.com/
Thomas Mann
http://www.thomasmann.com/

Look at the overall form, its structure, it's feel, the closures,
the connections between each part and component.

AUGUST WORKSHOPS:

Saturday, 8/27/05, 1-day workshop entitled: TIBETAN BANGLE BRACELET
http://www.cynthiarutledge.net/workshops/b-tibetanbangle.htm

Sunday, 8/28/05, 1-day workshop entitled: SEA COIL BANGLE
http://www.cynthiarutledge.net/workshops/b-seacoilbangle.htm

We'll be doing these two 1-day workshops in August. I haven't set
the prices yet, but I will do so within the week. For these
pieces, you'll be given a supply list prior to the workshop, and a
set of instructions at the workshop. There are no kits.

The workshops will be limited to 15 participants each.

Mark your calendars.


BEADWEAVING: FORMS AND COMPONENTS

We've broken up Cynthia Rutledge's beadweaving career into 3 stages.
1. The first stage saw experimentation with using the peyote
stitch to achieve a high degree of 3-dimensionality and structural
integrity within a piece. Important, but secondary, were
artistic uses of color, pattern and form. Beyond the structural
integrity of the focal piece itself, there was little thought given
to other jewelry design issues. The cord or strap were add-ons,
with most thought given to general look and appeal. The whole
piece is made up of parts.

The Necklace or Bracelet Shape and Form:
We briefly discussed the necklace or bracelet shape and form,
typical of this time period, among all bead and jewelry artists.
Most of the early pieces (early 1990s) we looked at seem to be an
elaborate pendant piece with a simple rope. The clasp assembly may
be the same color, and may be beaded, but not much attention is
given to the clasp assembly as an integral and organic part of the
piece. There is little thought given to the necklace in total.
Little thought about the necklace in and of itself, as a whole art
form.


2. The second stage we are about to enter saw the influence of
metal work within her pieces. There is much more attention and
sensitivity to the relationship of all the parts of the piece to the
whole. The whole piece is more than the sum of its parts, but you
can still intellectually appreciate the parts by themselves.


3. The third stage is covered in the two workshops Cynthia will
be conducting in Nashville. Here, she builds upon her earlier
artistic achievements and adds a primary concern with forms, themes
and their repetitions. Here the whole piece is more than the sum
of its parts, and there is a powerful energy and synergy among the
parts themselves and between the parts and the whole.


MAJOR DESIGN ELEMENTS INFLUENCED BY METAL WORK:

Components, particular components that move or twist around.

Merging shapes and components

Rivets

Chains and links

Boxes and hard-right-angle-edges

Opening and Closing

Hinges

Undulating Forms

Color Blending
-- Mixing
-- Blending
-- Overlapping

Organically Finishing Off a Piece
-- Designing and positioning clasps
-- The button clasp; positioning of the button and loop on the
piece; raising the button


Her third period concerned with:
Forms, Themes, Symbols and Repetitions


SUMMARY OF BEAD WEAVING ARTISTS (circa early 1990's)

Below is a summary of the ideas we discussed about some of the
primary beadweaving artists who were prominent in the early 1990s,
and whose energy and ideas led up to the inauguration of Bead &
Button magazine in 1994. While we did not get a chance to go into
detail with all the artists, but were able to discuss and compare a
considerable body of their works. We were also able to try and
experiment with many of their projects. Most of their pieces we
discussed or tried out were those developed and/or published in the
early 1990s timeframe.

ARTIST
(primary technique)
1. Notables about the artist (What about the artist is
particularly important or of interest?)
2. Structural Integrity (how does the artist keep the piece
from collapsing in on itself?)
3. Putting Technique Into Effect (does the artist do anything
in particular in applying the technique that affects either it's
structural integrity or overall appeal?)
4. Overall Appeal and Feel (Does the artist's piece(s) appeal
to you, particularly as "art", not just "craft"? Is there a
satisfying interaction between the piece, its structural tension,
its appeal, and the use of beads as the medium of art?)
5. "Bead" as medium of Art (How does the artist use
the "bead" – its colors, light, shadows, reflections, refractions –
to achieve a successful piece?)
6. Making a Business of their Art: (How do business
considerations come into play in/with their art to make their art
visible and viable?)

CYNTHIA RUTLEDGE
(peyote)
1. Notables: Integrity of piece result of the application of
the primary stitch, and strategies for increasing/decreasing
2. Structural Integrity: Goal to achieve 3-D piece. Piece
holds its shape by virtue of how it is stitched. Stitchery is
used to create structural supports within the piece
3. Putting Technique Into Effect: An engineer/architect/bridge
builder.
4. Overall Appeal and Feel: A concern with form results in an
attractive and appealing piece, but not necessarily the most
attractive and most appealing piece; however, to achieve the highest
appeal, would have had to have sacrificed the piece's structural
integrity
5. "Bead" as medium of Art: Mix and blending of colors,
finishes (ie, glossy vs. matte), textures to set sensibility of
piece. In garden urn, "old" achieved thru mix of glossy and matte.
6. Making a Business of their Art: Teaches and does
workshops; kitted up her projects; hasn't written a book – doesn't
want to lessen value of kits; conducts master classes

JOYCE SCOTT
(peyote)
1. Notables: She visibly and provocatively challenged the
artist to use the peyote stitch in creating pieces which challenged
people's understandings of the world around them. Multimedia
artist who used beads.
2. Structural Integrity
3. Putting Technique Into Effect:
4. Overall Appeal and Feel: "uses art in a manner that incites
people to look and then carry something home – even if it's
subliminal – that might make a change in them." Messes with
stereotypes. Prods viewer to reassess.
5. "Bead" as medium of Art
6. Making a Business of their Art: Conducts workshops; holds
exhibitions of her works; lectures in University setting

MARCIE STONE
(peyote)
1 Notables: Basket weaver who began to incorporate beads into
her work until beads became her work.
2 Structural Integrity: A lot of flow and organic
composition; interwoven parts
3 Putting Technique Into Effect: visual design doesn't dead-
end at the clasp
4 Overall Appeal and Feel
5 "Bead" as medium of Art
6 Making a Business of their Art: Owns bead shop; runs
workshops; gives workshops; sells pieces


CAROL WILCOX WELLS
(peyote)
1. Notables: Wrote key book giving considerable visibility to
various stitches and contemporary bead weavers
2. Structural Integrity: Goal to achieve 3-D piece. Piece
is created which presents a general shape, and then is reinforced,
either by manipulating the surface around a solid core, or by
strategically adding more thread/stitching thru-out the piece.
3. Putting Technique Into Effect
4. Overall Appeal and Feel: Pieces are very attractive and
appealing, sometimes to the detriment of form and structural
integrity of the piece.
5. "Bead" as medium of Art
6. Making a Business of their Art: Written books; holds
workshops


WENDY ELLSWORTH
(peyote)
7. Notables
8. Structural Integrity: Goal to achieve 3-D piece. Can
mix types and colors of beads within a structural whole
9. Putting Technique Into Effect: free form peyote
10. Overall Appeal and Feel
11. "Bead" as medium of Art: considers herself "a color artist,
with beads representing tiny photons of colored light which can be
woven together to form infinite patterns of beauty and delight."
12. Making a Business of their Art: Holds workshops

DAVID CHATT
(right angle weave)
1. Notables
2. Structural Integrity: Goal to achieve 3-D piece. Can
create a structurally sound "mattress" using the RAW in a 3-D netted
effect, and then create a surface around this. Like creating
geodesic domes (Buckminster Fuller). Also varies sizes and colors
of beads to enhance sense of dimensionality.
3. Putting Technique Into Effect
4. Overall Appeal and Feel
5. "Bead" as medium of Art: Pieces convey very powerful sense
of color and light, and their control
6. Making a Business of their Art: Sells pieces. Conducts
multi-week seminars.

NANC MEINHART
(right angle weave; mix of stitches in same piece)
1. Notables: beading should be a psychologically uplifting
experience
2. Structural Integrity: Piece holds its shape by creating the
main "skin" or surface, and creating a subtle skeleton or structural
support through the use of embellishment strategically placed.
3. Putting Technique Into Effect: repetitive steps in peyote
and how the beads lock into place reaffirms a world view of beadwork
as structure. Assumed outcome must be structurally sound.
4. Overall Appeal and Feel: Most important to judge as these
emerge from the creativity and personality of the particular
artist. Piece doesn't necessarily have to have a "Wow!" factor.
5. "Bead" as medium of Art: Choice and use of beads as they
reflect inner creativity and personality of the particular artist.
Picking and utilizing beads is therapeutic, meditative, inner-self
revealing
6. Making a Business of their Art: conducts workshops; holds
classes; provides "master" class opportunity

DIANE FITZGERALD
(brick stitch; documentation of many indigenous stitches)
1. Notables: historical and cultural integrity of her pieces
2. Structural Integrity: Piece holds its shape by
concentrating on the relationship and positioning of each bead, one-
by-one, as they are brought next to each other
3. Putting Technique Into Effect: bead by bead; conveys a
clear thought process in creating a piece (Other artists seem to go
row by row and focus too much on the project as a whole)
4. Overall Appeal and Feel
5. "Bead" as medium of Art
6. Making a Business of their Art: writes many books;
conducts workshops; owns small bead shop

JEANNETTE COOK
(peyote)
1. Notables
2. Structural Integrity: Goal – create 3-D self-supporting
structure
3. Putting Technique Into Effect: freeform sculptural peyote;
clasps as organic bead-woven extension of piece; very geometrical in
what she creates; combines beads in geometric patterns; great
attention to details; mixed media approach – uses other materials
besides beads and threads
4. Overall Appeal and Feel
5. "Bead" as medium of Art: daring colors
6. Making a Business of their Art: Conducts workshops.


ALICE KORACH
(embellishment of fiber works with beads)
1. Notables
2. Structural Integrity:
3. Putting Technique Into Effect
4. Overall Appeal and Feel
5. "Bead" as medium of Art:
6. Making a Business of their Art: Creating Bead & Button;
workshops; writes articles; edits magazines; launched consumer bead
show

SANDY FORRINGTON
(picot lace – tatting with beads)
1. Notables
2. Structural Integrity:
3. Putting Technique Into Effect
4. Overall Appeal and Feel
5. "Bead" as medium of Art
6. Making a Business of their Art

SUE JACKSON AND WENDY HUBRICK (Wonder Sisters)
(peyote)
1. Notables
2. Structural Integrity: Mathematical. Embellishment
strategically placed along piece to achieve a structural
tightness/integrity according to a mathematical formula. Skeletal
embellishment becomes a part and parcel of piece itself.
3. Putting Technique Into Effect: Precision.
4. Overall Appeal and Feel
5. "Bead" as medium of Art
6. Making a Business of their Art: teaching workshops

VIRGINIA BLAKELOCK
(peyote; loom)
1. Notables
2. Structural Integrity:
3. Putting Technique Into Effect: a bead engineer
4. Overall Appeal and Feel
5. "Bead" as medium of Art
6. Making a Business of their Art

CAROL PERRENOUD
(peyote; twisted fringe)
1. Notables
2. Structural Integrity:
3. Putting Technique Into Effect
4. Overall Appeal and Feel
5. "Bead" as medium of Art
6. Making a Business of their Art: workshops; videos; shop


General questions raised by the group and which relate to the
categorizations above:

1. Do we treat the piece as "architecture"?
2. Do we separately evaluate the "inner skin" of the piece from
the "outer" skin?
3. To what extent should any underlying structure have an
inherent beauty, particularly if it is not seen by the viewer?
4. If we take the role of the beadweaving artist, and view the
piece as "art", is this appreciation of the piece as art the same,
if we follow the artist's instructions to reproduce the piece?
5. To what extent are business decisions an influence on the
beadweaver's "art" and "artistry"?
6. If the goal of the artist is 3-D and structural integrity,
to what extent is embellishment and surface treatment legitimate
techniques toward this end?
7. Can you appreciate the piece as a whole separate from its
parts or sections?
8. When creating an "art piece", is embellishment somehow
cheating?
9. Does the instrinsic value of the piece result from how
perfect it is or how pretty it is?
10. How do you feel about mixed media pieces – pieces, for
example, that use wire to create a basic shape, or pieces done over
and around a solid object?



4/6/05

The Assignments:


1) Create a beadwoven necklace that approximates the look and
sensibility of this scalloped, metal work piece:

http://www.jjewelry.com/


2) Design and create a rivet.

You'll have 3 panel surfaces. The two outer ones are linked
together, and hold the middle panel in place. The middle panel
should be able to freely move. The two outer panels should not
impede the movement of of the inner panel.


3) Design and create a hinge.

Create two panel surfaces. Link them so that they can open and
close freely as a hinge.


4) Examine the pieces by David Yurman and Thomas Mann

David Yurman
http://www.davidyurman.com/
Thomas Mann
http://www.thomasmann.com/


4/25/05

Some miscellaneous notes from discussions in April 2005:

1. RE: NanC Meinhardt

Still some disagreement on appeal of her work.

Kathleen: but the nature of art and jewelry is where "appeal" is a
critical component.

Barbara: Beauty in in the eye of the beholder. Lots of people
find her work appealing. Her masks are her thing, not her
jewelry. I don't think all her pieces are beautiful -- don't like
all her color choices. But I find her work appealing, particular
the free form. I remember NanC saying she was a bead engineer.

2. RE: Mixed Media -- Legitimate Art?

Warren: Not always, but usually bothers me.

Barbara: Works for me. I like to use more than 1 technique.

3. RE: To what degree does a beadweaver's previous background
affect their work?


Warren: Marcie Stone and basketry -- her beadwork seems to reflect
her earlier history.

Connie: Diane Fitzgerald started out as a journalist -- that's why
she's so clear.

Barbara: people's background affect their beadweaving styles.

4. RE: Use of components in Cynthia Rutledge' Celtic Garden Bracelet

Ruth pointed out that the instructions for attaching the petals to
the ledges on the core were very vague. She had sewn the full
width of the petal bottom to the ledge, and had too much thread
showing on either side of the petal bottom. The petal bottom had a
flat straight side. The ledge was curved around a central core.

Warren: how you attach components together is a critical design
step. If you look at Thomas Mann's pieces, he's spot-connected the
components. Perhaps would make more sense in petals to attach
only the central part of the petal bottom.

5: RE: Current Assignments

Folks still need to come up with completed examples of
- rivet
- hinge
- mirroring the scalled metal-work necklace using beads


CENTER FOR BEADWORK & JEWELRY ARTS

Two topics were discussed today.

First, we very briefly discussed a little about attaching the petal
to the ledged calyx of the Cynthia's Celtic Garden Bracelet.

Second, we more broadly discussed "Color Blending". Cynthia's
Romancing the Lariat necklace uses 24 colors in a color blending
scheme.


Components: Attaching Petals

A few weeks ago, Ruth shared her on-going Celtic Garden project, and
had expressed some concern about a lot of threads showing where the
petal was attached to the calyx of the flower. The instructions
just say something very general -- "sew like wild".

The petal has a basically squared bottom and the ledge around the
calyx is round. Ruth sewed the middle of the petal directly to the
calyx, but as she got to either side of the petal, a lot of thread
showed, because these two sides were furthest from the calyx.

At that time, we had discussed alternative approaches for attaching
the components. In the interim, Warren spoke with Cynthia. She
indicated that you would stitch from one side across from the
other. This would leave the exposed-thread-problem on one side of
the petal. After the petal is secured to the calyx, she then whip-
stitches and adds a 14/0 seed bead or two which will cover the
threads.

Warren asked her is she had an overall and developed strategy for
attaching components, or if she approached each project on its own
terms, for attaching components. She said she went project by
project. The biggest issue for her in attaching components was
trying to anticipate and control how each component would lay upon
the other, and whether the result would still be appealing. For
the fuchsia flower, her original flower had 15 petals. She felt
this made the flower too puffed up and big. The current
instructions use about 9-10 petals.

The component approach allows you to have more design control, have
a "fuller" flower, than if you tried to bead the whole flower as one
piece and exercise. However, some of the "engineering" needs to be
hidden, such as adding that extra whip-stitching and bead to hide an
area where there was a lot of thread showing.

COLOR BLENDING

Beaders and Jewelry Makers typically do not utilize the full
potential of the bead (and the interplay of light and shadow with
the bead) in blending colors. They tend to approach color
blending as if working with paints or inks, (rather than multi-
dimensional glass).

Color Blending presents a series of design issues:

- How to manage the transitioning between 2 or more colors

- How to identify a "base" color and a "blend" color, for purposes
of color blending
(The base is your starting color. The blend is your ending color.
The base and the blend may be similar colors, or different colors.
In color blending, you need to be very clear about your starting
color and your ending color. If you just start blending some colors
off your base color, without an clear idea of your ending color,
your blend becomes less than fully satisfactory.)

- How to determine whether to use a mode of color blending which
relies on white, gray, black or the base or blend color

- How many "colors" you want to use to go from your base to your
final blend color

- Whether you Match base and blend colors, or you Coordinate them.
(In design, it's usually better to Coordinate, than Match)

- How you determine color compatibility. (Note: for some colors
and color combinations, our eyes won't blend them)

- To what extent you use different finishes and effects on beads --
such as glossy, matte, iridescent, metallic, metallic iridescent,
satin, etc. -- to achieve what would typically use only white, gray,
and black, if you were using paints or inks to color blend.


MODES OF COLOR BLENDING from one color to another

1. Brightening the Base
(use more and more white over the successive colors from base to
blend)

2. Blackening the Base
(use more and more black over the successive colors from base to
blend)

3. Overlay
(Create blending by creating shadows and/or highlights)

4. Softening
(use various shades of gray to darken or lighten the base color)

5. Hardening
(this represents what would happen colorwise if you used a bright
spotlight to gradually wash out the color of the base. The center
of the column of light would be most washed out.)

6. Color Dodge
(here you brighten the base color to affect the blend color;
effective strategy for layered beads)

7. Color Burn
(here you darken the base color to affect the blend color; effective
strategy for layered beads)

8. Difference
(here you subtract the blend VALUE from the base VALUE).
Value is the degree of light or dark hue of a color. Pink is
lighter (higher valued) than red. Maroon is darker (lower valued)
than red. Here you are varying the Hue of the base and/or the blend.

9. Exclusion
(here you subtract the blend INTENSITY from the base INTENSITY).
Intensity is the degree of dullness or brightness of a color. Red
is more intense than pink or maroon. Here you are varying the
Saturation of the base and/or the blend

STRATEGIES FOR COLOR BLENDING WITH BEADS

Random: Create a Bead Soup Mix

Arranged:
One-layer, flat, side by side
One-layer, tubular, side by side (have to take into account more
light refractive effects, which tend to intensify colors)
Multi-Layered, flat
Multi-layered, tubular
Displacement (here you position different amounts of each color in
different areas of the piece)
Distraction (here you use a "clash" color to enhance the "blend" --
you make the blend more noticeable or real or more focal)

Resources

At this website you can generate color blend strategies using as
little as 3 colors or as many as 11-12 colors. You generate the
colors, and then find beads which match the colors.

www.meyerweb.com/eric/tools/color-blend/


We discussed the color blending used by Kathleen in her Eternal
Garden bracelet, as well as that of Diane Fitzgerald in the Ginko
leaf necklace.

"Displacement" seems to be a key strategy in both. Different
amounts of each color are placed in different areas/positions along
the piece. In the Ginko Leaf necklace, colors are blending not
only within each leaf, but from leaf to leaf when seen within the
project as a whole.

In Kathleen's piece, there are 8 blended colors. Each seems to
share the same value, intensity, white/gray/black-ness, so the major
blending technique is displacement (the positioning of colors, and
the quantity of each color in each row of the piece).

Warren discussed the 2nd-layer embellishment he did on Cynthia's
Garden Urn. He felt that in the original bead mix in the kit,
there weren't enough colors to be blended to achieve
that "historical, dug-up, antiquity" feel that the piece was
supposed to have, and that 1 layer of beads was also insufficient,
to achieve a desirable color blending. In the 2nd layer of
embellishment, he added 2 more colors than in the original mix, and
picked up on 3 existing colors -- all glossy. The two colors he
added were a transparent red iris luster and a copper iris. Warren
felt that in Cynthia's mix, the "base" color was very strong, but
the "blend" color wasn't, or wasn't sufficiently identified. He
felt her original color blend was a good start, but not fully
successful, given her goals for the project.


CENTER FOR BEADWORK & JEWELRY ARTS

Discussion notes from wed, 7/6/05

COMPOSITIONS IN LINE AND FORM

- What is "Form"?

Line and/or Dimensional Space
Theme
Symbol

Forms can be simple things like shapes or areas of color. Or they
can be complex things with deep social and psychological symbolic
meanings.

In beadwork, less capable artists are very focused on the "bead" or
how a group of beads come together in a very specific shape.
The "shape" has more power and evokes more response from the viewer,
than the beads alone.

More capable artists also begin to interrelate and integrate these
shapes. The shapes themselves become "parts", which we call forms.
The "composition of all shapes within a piece" has more power and
evokes more response from the viewer, than the shapes alone.

- How do you establish a "form" within a piece?

Placement/Positioning
Repetition
Juxtaposition and Rhythmic Presentation
Colors/Patterns/Textures
Positive and Negative Spaces


- How do you create pieces in line with the viewer's expectations
about "form"?

Forms are used to direct vision. [Main concept here!]

When interacting with a piece of jewelry, viewers first expect to
see a "circle". Cognitively, they first try to make a visual pass
around the complete circle. They get annoyed if this isn't a
smooth visual process.

Second, they try to find a place for their eyes to come to a stop
and rest. Usually this is the focal point of the piece.

Third, they use the jewelry as worn to gauge their orientation to
their surroundings. The jewelry is used to help orient them to up
vs down and right vs left.

Forms within the piece, successfully created and implemented, then,
helps the viewer:
- make a complete circling of the piece
- find a place to stop and rest
- orient to the surroundings

Conversely, when a viewer can't use their surroundings to make sense
of the world around them, they get very disoriented. An extreme
example is like what probably happened to John F. Kennedy Jr during
his plane crash. Because of the clouds and the color of the ocean,
he lost sight of the horizon, and, without instruments, couldn't
orient the plane.

- How do you use forms to re-orient the viewer's expectations
about "form" and directions?

You the artist have as a goal to control or set the stage for the
emotions and feelings and sensibilities you want to evoke from the
viewer.


- How does the use of individual beads come together within forms?

We compared 3 examples:

1) a necklace by Lisa Klakulak
http://www.landofodds.com/store/klakulak.htm

2) Romancing the Lariat by Cynthia Rutledge
http://www.cynthiarutledge.net/workshops/n-romancelariat.htm

3) Tibetan Bangle by Cynthia Rutledge
http://www.cynthiarutledge.net/workshops/b-tibetanbangle.htm

(4) While we different have a picture in front of us, the Garden
Urn was also discussed)
http://www.cynthiarutledge.net/kits/n-gardenurn/index.htm

If we start with the Garden Urn (early Rutledge period), then the
Lariat (middle Rutledge period), and the Tibetan Bangle (current
Rutledge period), you can see a progression of artistic use of
forms. The urn shows beads drawn together into a shape. The
lariat shows a composition of various components or shapes. The
Tibetan bangle shows an full integration of shapes.

Lisa's piece shows an extremely successful integration of forms
within a piece. NOTE how her piece controls the direction of the
viewer's vision:
- making the circle
- finding a place to stop and rest
- orienting to up/down and right/left


In the Lariat, the multiple shapes/components seem to need more of
an arrangement or hierarchy (more variation in dominance and
recessiveness among the pieces) to make it more successful. The
color blending and gradations, however, are strong elements which
tie the piece together as a whole.

We asked if the feeling/power of the piece would increase, stay the
same or decrease, if the piece were done in blacks/whites/grays.
The overall feeling would be that it would remain the same.

We asked how this lariat compared to the Ginko Leaf lariat by Diane
Fitzgerald, in terms of the use of forms. We felt that the Ginko
leaf was a better example of the use of forms.

We looked at two pieces by Kathleen Lynam. There were strong
elements of form within each one -- mostly achieved thru color and
the positioning of color.


Today we discussed the role of "business" in shaping art. We
discussed these questions:


To what extent do/should business concerns influence the artistic
choices bead artists make?
- Designing Pieces
- Develping courses to teach
- Kits to sell
- Selling pieces
- writing books

Business involves:
- Putting your artwork on a sound financial footing
- Developing market-driven strategies (rather than product-driven
ones)
- Pricing and selling
- Compromising artistic and design choices
- "Letting Go" of your pieces


CASE STUDY: Our Stitch of the Month Curriculum
This program is but one of many examples where there are tensions
between artistic goals and workable (meaning fundable) strategies
for achieving them.
Program Goals: To teach the 12 major bead weaving stitches. To
teach how to think through each stitch, and how to do some
variations with the stitch, such as increasing/decreasing.

Basic elements required:
Finding and retaining a competent teacher
Finding and recruiting more and more students
Educational strategies

This class has been taught by 3 different teachers over the past 5
years. While it is better than it has ever been before, it still
hasn't "clicked".

Class "Project"
Original idea was to focus on the stitch, not a project.
Original class project was "Sampler" shadowbox
Next evolution: several different types of samples, not necessarily
just the shadow box
Next evolution: bracelets

WF: Most students not interested in samplers. They wanted to come
away with a piece that they could wear and show their friends.
The "bracelets" we're doing now are on the right track, but many
comments that they are not stylish enough. The design of each
bracelet seems more critical to keeping students motivated and
coming back, than just doing a bracelet. We're trying to make the
bracelet an exercise in applying the stitch and at least 1 variation
on the stitch. To keep the project simple, this has meant some less
than "fashionable" design choices.


Original tasks: learn the basic stitch. learn about variations
Evoluation: learn the basic stitch AND learn some variations.

WF: Concern here that original 2 teachers weren't getting across
the "how to think thru doing the stitch" adequately. We also added
information about under what situations it would make sense to use
the stitch, and under what situations it would not.


Provide "kits" or "sell supplies"?
Students seem very resistant to or fearful of selecting their
beads. Yet we want to encourage the development of creativity and
insight. Students don't want to buy something that is "wrong".
We want them to take a "trial and error" approach and to experiment.


We ecountered many market/marketing barriers:
- lack of legitimacy (we're a new program without a lot of word of
mouth)
- our curriculum is product-driven rather than market-driven
- much resistance on the part of most of our past teachers to do any
kind of self-promotion and simple marketing.

We've made another type of choice to influence the success of the
Stitch of the Month. We've decided to turn it into a how-to mass
market book. By setting this goal, it is also influencing us to:
- gain more clarity in instructions
- make projects more appealing
- make projects do-able
- make projects original
- make the sequence of classes more marketable


 

COPYRIGHT, 2009, FELD
Land of Odds - Beads, Jewelry Findings, Jewelry Making Supplies
Land of Odds provides bead and jewelry making artists with virtually all their beads, supplies,
books and jewelry findings needs, with over 30,000 products.
Home of The Ugly Necklace Contest-A Jewelry Design Competition With A Twist,
and of All Dolled Up: Beaded Art Doll Competition.
Retail/Discounts/Wholesale.