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The Craft

I always tell people who ask about my craft that I love the mix of working with both metal and beads. Going back and forth between the two very different mediums has made it so I never ever get bored.
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First and foremost, I am a metalsmith, working primarily in sterling silver. I love creating with metal because it brings out a more masculine side of my personality. Acts such as hammering, sawing, lighting up a torch (I always loved playing with fire), sanding, polishing or shaping metal are so incredibly fulfilling. I can take a piece of sterling in sheet, wire or any other form & manipulate it into the exact shape I want. It truly feels like I'm working magic with my two hands & exercises my mechanically inclined brain at the same time. Yes, it's dirty and takes a bit of elbow grease, but it makes me feel more fulfilled than I ever imagined a creative endeavor could.

Beading, on the other hand, feels very feminine. You have to relax, zone in & do the tedious work with patience and grace. You can't strong arm it or rush the process by any means. I love the movement of weaving beads as it almost becomes a whole body experience. You must pay close attention to the tension you're applying & trust that all the little additions you're making will soon add up to one cohesive piece. Beading continually teaches me that the whole is made of many smaller components and in some way or another everything is interwoven with everything else. I love that.

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The third and final element of my creative passion is working with gemstones. Picking out the stones that I use in my designs is a sacred practice for me & one that can not be forced. It truly feels like I merge my energetic field with those of the stones & I can only say it's a feeling of balance when I find the ones I end up taking home with me. Many of my designs could be described as classic and simple & this is because I often feel that the best way to let the beautiful gems show their full beauty is to let them stand alone. In my more complex designs, I always start with the stones as a point of inspiration & go on to craft the silver and choose the bead colors based off of what would honor the stones the best. I get most of my gemstones at the Tucson Gem show every year, which is my most anticipated annual trip!

Combining my love for metal smithing, bead work & gemstones has been an absolute joy for me & it makes me excited to no end that there are countless possibilities to yet to be dreamed up and created.
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