** Update 2019 - Organizations have been switched up as has the way I donate - see updated blog post.
With a new ring design comes a new charity! I've decided to give the National Park Foundation the donation for the mountain ring design. For every made to order ring, 1% goes to a different charity based on design. In 2017, over $600 was donated to the following charities:
Tree Bark Rings and Vine/Leaf Rings - American Forest Foundation
Mountain Rings - National Park Foundation
Love Rocks Rings - Geological Society of America
Subtley Rings - Great Lakes Alliance
Sands of Time Rings - Ocean Conservancy
Tooled with Love Rings - Society of North American Goldsmiths
Yoga Inspired Rings - Satchidananda Ashram/Yogaville
I can't believe all of 2017 went by and I didn't blog once. Well... I can believe it, but it's just kind of surprising how long it's been.
2017 was a big year, maybe the biggest!
We downsized our big lovely house, after selling/giving away a lot of our stuff, we moved the rest of our belongings to storage and lived in a temporary little furnished cottage while we planned a wedding, traveled, got married and prepared to move from GA to WA.
In September we made the big move and it was pretty crazy for awhile. The trip was amazing. Moving a business to a new state was... less than amazing. I'm still working on getting my studio set up just right, but overall, it's pretty incredible. We made it through the holidays and I'm feeling so good about the new year!
I started off by reading Deep Work by Cal Newport. I'm pretty obsessed with the podcast Hidden Brain and the host, Shankar Vedantam, interviewed Cal for one of the episodes and really made me interested in reading the book. While it's not really geared toward an artist selling online, there are a lot of tools he gives that are really helpful.
My work day is an interesting play on using social media to promote my business while not getting sucked in to the overuse/addiction/time suck that the online world can be.
It tied in perfectly with one of my new year's goals of scheduling. Ever since I started working for myself, I've always relished the non-schedule. The do-what-I-want-whenever-I-want felt like the ultimate freedom. Using a calendar and creating a schedule seemed opposite to that. But I've come around and so far, I'm really enjoying the effects of scheduling my time and using this amazing planner from Native Bear!
Part of me wonders if I have too many goals and changes I wanted to enact for this coming year, but I don't really think so. Part of what we wanted by moving to WA was to create the life we wanted to have. Planning time for hikes every (or almost every) weekend to see all the beautiful places on the Olympic Peninsula means no work on the weekends. Having time for friends and making connections is also really important. It means learning to be efficient with my time and scheduling the things that mean more to me than sitting in front of a computer trying to run a business...
Creating art and being outside and exercising are some of those things. And in the past 4 months have seen little of those. It's about finding a balance and not working all the time. I'm pleased that in less than two weeks I've been drawing and painting again. Yesterday I took a break and went on a run through the woods and looked at the ocean (or the straight of Juan de Fuca to be technical). Everyday I'm so grateful to be here. It took be plans to get us here and we made it. Looking forward to this year full of big plans!
(be on the look out for more mountain and water themed rings! and paintings because photos just can't capture the beauty my eyes see)
What are you big plans for 2018? Are you planning a big move, writing a book, finally cleaning out your basement to create an art space?
As artists and jewelers, making things is our way of life. It's also a way to make a living and to raise money for charities and causes we believe in. A group of my metalsmithing friends got together and each made our version of a safety pin. Some makers simply made a donation to a charity they wanted to support and are wearing their pins - others are selling pins to raise money. We can all do something in our own way to help make the world a little bit better, a little more loving and a little more beautiful. Artists in order of top to bottom/left to right: Nina Gibson, Elise Worman, Leslie Zemenek, Kathryn Riechert Jewelry, Sara Westermark, Laney Clark, Victoria Takahashi, Jennifer Lawler, Christine Rose-Mighion, Cynthia Kurth, me, Rachael Sudlow
Mine is available for purchase here - full sale price is donated to the ACLU or Southern Poverty Law Center.
See what some of the other artists are saying:
Laney Clark - Silentgoddess - Blog: http://www.silentgoddessartjewelry.com/blog
Elise Worman EMW Metalworks: https://www.instagram.com/emwmetalworks/
Cynthia von der Schmuckburg http://schmuckburg.blogspot.de/
Victoria Takahashi/Experimetal - http://vtakahashi.blogspot.com/
Every year I want to start earlier in getting the snowflake ornaments done - it's not quite as early as I'd like but it's at least before Thanksgiving! It is kind of hard to think about snowflakes when it is so warm out and Christmas seems so far away. Alex has been working really hard on these while I'm catching up on custom orders. We have 4 dozen listed so far.
News for the next couple of months:
Deadline for custom work needed by Christmas/New Years is November 18th.
The OCAF holiday market is happening in Watkinsville Dec. 2 - 4th. I will have work in a booth with other Athens Metal Arts Guild Members (snowflakes included).
I'll be having an Open Studio on Saturday Dec. 10th from 10 - 5pm. ATHICA will also be having their holiday market and several other artists in the Chase Park Warehouses will also be having open studios as well including David Hale and Erin McIntosh.
December 15th begins the 2nd half of the yoga teacher training I'm staffing and I'll most likely be out of the studio from the 15th until the end of the year.
And the end of the year will be here before we know it!