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Author Topic: AOTM September 2007 - Josephine Wadman  (Read 4142 times)
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Posts: 104

« on: September 01, 2007, 03:39:27 AM »

September's Artist of the Month is:

Iíve always been interested in various arts and crafts and have often regretted not studying something art based rather than the economics degree which I did back in the early 80ís.
I worked for some years in personal taxation but left work when I had my second child and never went back.
A few years ago I was talking with a friend who also did a lot of sewing and other crafts. Our daughters had just done a term of jewellery club at school and had been bought some beads for Christmas. We decided to have a go at making jewellery,combined with some other crafts, and getting together to sell at home parties and craft fairs and so started my journey to beadmaking.

After a year or so we were both doing quite well but we were beginning to go our own ways. I wanted to do more than bead stringing and started experimenting with some wirework and Silver Art Clay. I also knew that selling wasnít my strong point and wanted to get to the stage where I could sell through galleries, shops and the internet.
One day while browsing the internet I came across lampwork. While a lot of the jewellery I saw done with lampwork beads wasnít really to my taste I quickly realised that a huge variety of styles and looks could be achieved. A bit more research and I discovered the Hothead torch. I had been toying with the idea of a kiln for the Silver Clay for a while and this helped me take the plunge.      
Not long after getting my starter kit I also discovered the Old Kennels not far from my home and booked a beginners course with Barbara Mason. Very soon I was hooked. I booked another course this time with Kate Drew Wilkinson, learning to use sheets of stained glass to make beads. Shortly after this I upgraded to a minor and oxycon. Since then I have also taken a class with Julie Ann Denton. Watching someone like Julie working with glass is amazing and inspiring.

What I really enjoy about beadmaking is that you are creating something unique everytime you sit down to work. Taking a rod or sheet of glass and working it in the flame is just so exciting, I canít imagine that a time will come when I wonít want to do it. What more exciting start could you have to your working day than opening up the kiln to check the previous dayís beads? Of course there are times when the bead that you were sure would be wonderful is actually a reject for some reason but the times when you find something really special more than make up for that.

I enjoy experimenting with different styles of beads and I like the freedom that working with glass in this way gives you. Until recently I didnít feel that I had a particularly recognisable style but that is changing. The focal beads I have made recently with an impressionist type flower or meadow design really seem to have become my signature bead. I make a lot of other types of beads as well but use many of these in my jewellery rather than selling them as beads.

There are a lot of wonderful beadmakers around whose work I like and admire. I will spare the blushes of those members of FH and just mention a few others. Sarah Hornik, Melanie Moertel, Anastasia, Naos, Kate Drew Wilkinson.

Most of my work now is sold through galleries although I still do some sales and jewellery parties. Sales from my website are starting to become a more regular occurrence.

I hope to be making beads for many years to come and get better at doing it. I look forward to developing new ideas and styles and taking more classes. My only regret is that I didnít start years ago. Hopefully I will continue building the number of galleries selling my work and the sales of my beads from my website.....then my husband can stop asking if I think I might have made a profit yet!
 Coming soon

« Last Edit: November 16, 2010, 05:24:29 PM by mizgeorge » Logged

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