Learn To Bead

At Land of Odds / Be Dazzled Beads – Beads, Jewelry Findings, and More

Posts Tagged ‘preserve craftsmanship’

Coming Out As A Jewelry Artist

Posted by learntobead on July 28, 2022

At what point did I first begin to call myself a Jewelry Artist?

Coming out as a jewelry artist is similar, though not exactly the same, as someone coming out as gay. It is fraught with fear and dread. It means very visibly presenting yourself with a new public identity. It means preparing your ego to receive some negative comments, critiques, reviews, perhaps doubt or disbelief, and in some rarer instances, rejection or denial. It means asking others to accept and support you in your new role as Jewelry Designer.

There is a betwixt and between aspect to this coming out process — a rite of passage. And the unknown time and feelings and situations, between the before and afterwards, is often a span of uncertainty too great for many an artist to transcend. Many who want to be jewelry designers, are somewhat afraid to present themselves as such. These closet artists tell their family and friends such things as, “I dabble in this and that, including jewelry-making.” Or, “I consider myself a bank teller slash jewelry artist (and you can substitute whatever profession you are in for the words bank teller).” Or, “I’m making some things for fun or gifts, but not selling things.”

There is some hesitation. “I am a jewelry designer.” Can’t quite get the words out.

“I am a jewelry designer.” But I wasn’t trained and educated to be one. It was not my original passion, though I am passionate about it now.

“I am a jewelry designer.” Keep wanting to say “but” or add some qualification, so other people don’t say, with mocking and astonishment, “You’re a what?!@#$” “Can you make a living at that?”

“I am a jewelry designer,” you whisper to yourself over and over, but don’t tell anyone else.

When you step out of the closet, however, you show others you want respect. As a jewelry designer. You demand from others an understanding. As a jewelry designer. You present yourself as someone with self-esteem and confidence. As a jewelry designer.

After multiple levels of transition, I realize that the only thing that would diminish me as a jewelry artist is if I turned my back on it.


Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.


Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Saying Good-Bye! To Your Jewelry: A Rite Of Passage

The Jewelry Design Philosophy: Not Craft, Not Art, But Design

What Is Jewelry, Really?

The Jewelry Design Philosophy

Creativity: How Do You Get It? How Do You Enhance It?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Becoming The Bead Artist and Jewelry Designer

5 Essential Questions Every Jewelry Designer Should Have An Answer For

Getting Started / Channeling Your Excitement

Getting Started / Developing Your Passion

Getting Started / Cultivating Your Practice

Becoming One With What Inspires You

Architectural Basics of Jewelry Design

Doubt / Self Doubt: Major Pitfalls For The Jewelry Designer

Techniques and Technologies: Knowing What To Do

Jewelry, Sex and Sexuality

Jewelry Making Materials: Knowing What To Do

Teaching Discplinary Literacy: Strategic Thinking In Jewelry Design

The Jewelry Designer’s Approach To Color

Point, Line, Plane, Shape, Form, Theme: Creating Something Out Of Nothing

The Jewelry Designer’s Path To Resonance

Jewelry Design Principles: Composing, Constructing, Manipulating

Jewelry Design Composition: Playing With Building Blocks Called Design Elements

Contemporary Jewelry Is Not A “Look” — It’s A Way Of Thinking


Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print


16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print


Posted in Art or Craft?, art theory, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, craft shows, creativity, design management, design theory, design thinking, jewelry collecting, jewelry design, jewelry making, Learn To Bead, pearl knotting, professional development, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Sudan – Lost Arts?

Posted by learntobead on December 11, 2009

Sudan – Lost Arts?

Before the ethnic, religious and racial wars, and before the damming of the Nile by Egypt, there were many ethnic groups in the Sudan.    The culture and society of these ethnic groups evolved as a very tight ecology.    This ecology was based on the trading of cows and women and food and goods — and the weather.

Good weather would start at the source of the Nile, and gradually shift further and further north with the progression of the seasons.     Where weather was good, cows and families could be fed, and a full life sustained.

But as the weather worsened, people had to strategically trade herds and family members — we’re talking women — , to reduce the burdens on land that was now poorer, upstream to where land was better.

This ecological and cultural balance — a delicate trade and dance up and down the river as the weather waxed and waned — was maintained up and down the Nile River for many centuries.      Each ethnic group along its own part of the Nile River and its flood plains had to calculate, based on assessments about the River, the weather, the ability to raise cows and grow crops to feed them, the optimum number of cows to raise, and the most strategic set of familial ties, knowing how many women would have to be traded, as well.

And then all the environmental clues disappeared.   The disruptions that came in the latter part of the 20th century, such as the Aswan Dam in Egypt, and the religious/racial wars between Muslim and animist, and light skin and dark skin, resulted in the current chaos and anomie we dreadfully look away from, when displayed on our TVs and computers.

We have documented the conflict very well, but have paid little attention to the crafts and arts of each ethnic group that made up the Sudan — numbering almost 400.    We have poor documentation of the kinds of things that have been created, and even poorer documentation and understanding of the techniques used by Sudanese artists and craftspersons.

Sudanese ethnic groups translated African motifs and techniques and influenced the flowering of Egyptian jewelry.

What kinds of things will we miss?

Posted in beadwork | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »