I opened my email this morning and received a message from and artist in the UK who shared some of the trials she was experiencing at her bench across the pond. It was so nice to be able to step back and help her with some of the things that I had recently managed to figure out.
One of her concerns was trying to take on something for a client that she didn't feel very comfortable with, but she didn't feel like she could pass up the opportunity to take on the challenge.
We are artists and if you are a person 'of an age' you probably don't have the luxury of being in a classroom environment for four years to learn your craft from a professor of one sort or another. We are following our path of discovery and it attracts interest and if we're lucky, admiration and before you know it we are working with clients to help them have something beautiful.
My recommendation - just be honest! We can't be expected to be everything to everyone and all we can do is our own personal best. There is probably not a person out there that looks at a piece of my work harder than I do myself. We are our own worst critics. But it is our love of perfection that makes our pieces worth having. We care and it shows in our work. We notice the smallest of things so that you can put something on and experience all of the concentration and care that has gone into your piece along the way.
Our journey is an honest and open one and that is all we can offer and all we need to offer.
ps - there was ONE person that looked at my work harder than anyone else and she taught me how to see. She passed from this plane this year but Judith Foster was an artisan extraordinaire. It was all good and well until Judith put those damn visors down. We miss you every day.......
I started my journey into jewelry making in 2005 while I was working in the Berkshires in Massachusetts, an area inundated with amazing artisans. I started with glass, which led to silver, which led to inlay, which led to joy.