Thursday, August 21, 2014

Crime and Punishment, and what I got out of it all

 I have given a complete account of how "Crime" came to be two posts ago, but here is a picture to refresh our memory.  Lucky me, Crime took home third place in the Swarovski category from BeadDreams. Woohoo, did not see that coming, and I could not be happier about it. 

I had an extremely hard time  making Crime, and no doubt it was due the the very personal nature of the piece: it made me face my demons and fears. Compared to Crime, Punishment was a cakewalk.
 "Punishment" was made for the Battle of the Beadsmith. As a competition piece, it was a complete flop, got kicked off sooner from the battle than either one of my two previous pieces,in the second round. But just like I did not cry myself to sleep the past two years, I did not feel the need for that this time either.
Once again, I want to remind anyone who might be reading this, who much like me likes to enter competitions, that your self worth and respect ought not to be wrapped up in the outcome of any of these events. You win some, loose some. It's awfuly subjective to judge art, especially from pictures. And  Punishment  is smaller then Crime and was not winning material to begin with. What it was, was therapy. What it was, was a dead bird hanging from two grinning fishies' mouth  It set my mind and soul at ease, and it made all the emotional silage that Crime has stirred up before, settle down in peace.

 If Crime was  terrible labor, Punishment really was a cakewalk. It came together painlessly and was done in no time. Maybe time just flew more. Now, why is that? Well, with Crime, I was the fish in the claws of the mythical monsters of my past. With Punishment, the fish, and now there are two of them,( interpret that as you may) slay the monster for good. Yes. This necklace is of a dead monster and two weird fishies killing it. Entirely not a winning competition piece, and completely, utterly freeing on a personal level.
 At the end of the day, Punishment is the one I glance at with love as I type these words, and Crime  I carefully study. Crime definitely has more intense details and I can see why the judges liked it. But I can't wait to see it go and leave my house. And it will, because it's already found a new home, and good riddance to it. I definitely won't miss it. I might keep Punishment around a little longer though. Makes me happy looking at the dead Kókó dangling from the mouth of the happy little fishies. 

 If you are reading this and you aren't convinced that I am a nutcase, then you might just agree that any kind of art oftentimes comes from the darkest places and pulling it out little by little is like pulling thorns from under nails or draining poison from a snake bite. Not everything one makes has to be dark, but art can be the best therapy there is, and oftentimes the most amusing things we create, and  most cheerful things we can give as artists, come from some deep dark places. I exorcised my demons and conquered them by making this piece, and  it's entirely inconsequential that one got some serious acknowledgement for being awesome, and one fell short.
Unlike with years of psychotherapy , the results of beady therapy can be sold  at the end of the session,and they can bring joy to others as well. Any therapy has it's place of course and I am not discouraging anyone from participating in any other sort of therapy, but if you are a beader, you know that creating with beads is good for the soul and can  soothe all sorts of aches.
That's all there is to it. I guess I had to sit on this  for a couple months to be able to put it this way. But that's all there is to it.
Thank you Anna Alford for bringing my creations to life.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Before I tackle bigger things, here is some eye candy.

The last few months of my life have gone by in a blur, as I got busier and busier not only with commissions and competition pieces, but with teaching opportunities and getting ready for these teaching opportunities.     I have completely abandoned my poor poor blog, deserving of so much more.
Even at the best of times I am a lot better at making things than talking about them, but recently the situation got a lot worse. Gone are the days of documenting every piece I make, because I simply don't have the time, and it seems like most people reading this blog are also on Facebook, and I just got really used to posting all my pictures there, instead of writing about them here.
Of course the blog format is a lot more friendly to long monologues about all sorts of things, and I shall not forget that,and will be trying to get back to writing more, but for now I just decided to post some pictures here of some of my favorite efforts since this spring.
I am planning on writing a post regarding placing third in the Swarovski category in Bead Dreams, and also plan on writing more about my slowly but surely unfolding future as a teacher. 
For now, enjoy the eye candy.