…A Guide For The Aspiring Bead Artist
by Warren S. Feld

Excerpts From This Ever-Evolving Tale.....

I don’t mean to drag a poor Elephant by its tail, kicking and screaming, into our bead world against its wishes. Nor do I perceive the elephant to be a threat, like you might see an Elephant in the boudoir, or the fine china store. And I don’t want you to shut your eyes and pretend not to notice that this Elephant is here, standing shoulder to shoulder with every beader and jewelry maker around.

The Elephant is not a joke. And the fact that it is “Rogue” makes it more important than ever to figure out why it’s here, among size #10 English beading needles, and Czech size 11/0 seed beads, and Austrian crystal beads. It seems so worldly, yet other-worldly, our Elephant. It’s not our muse. It’s not our Cassandra. It has no secret plan or strategy. It does not depend on its size to make its point. It does not hesitate to stomp and chomp and clomp because the beads before it are raku or glass or gemstone or crystal or metal or plastic. But a Rogue Elephant in the middle of our craft room forces upon us a completely different logic, so that we can make sense of it all.|



Self Esteem – Making Choices

Crafts enhance people’s self esteem. This is good.

You make a piece of jewelry. People like it, and express this to you.

However, sometimes people let the craft substitute for their personal identities. Friends and family praise the jewelry, thus praise the jewelry maker. It’s nice to have your ego stroked. But you need to remember that there is more to you than the pieces you have made.

And you don’t want to put yourself into a tightly bounded box, where you shy away from risks. You don’t want to find yourself making the same piece over and over again, afraid to try something else, should someone not like it. You also don’t want to find yourself making kit after kit after kit, without any personalizing of someone else’s creativity, or better yet, without venturing off to create your own patterns and ideas.

The primary source of “self-esteem” should come from within you. Not external to you. When someone says they don’t like your design, or they don’t like your choice of colors, they are not saying they don’t like you. They like you, or they wouldn’t express an honest opinion about your work.

The true Artist and Designer come from this inner place. They are able to bring their integral sense of self-esteem, a part of their very being, to the fore, when designing and constructing a piece of jewelry as art.

Their choices are informed by a sense of self. And that sense of self is self-validated within each piece of jewelry they create. No matter what anyone else thinks – good, bad or indifferent.


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