I had an interesting thing happen to me this past weekend at the "Made In CT Expo". Two women stood at my booth, whispering quietly to one another as they woman-handled my work...looking from every angle, feeling the textures, attentive to the pieces at a much more intense level than my usual booth guest, they started asking me (industry specific) questions about my processes.
"How do you get your floral and flourish patterns into the silver?" They were happy to learn that my specialty is etching, and that I don't use stamps.
"Do you do ALL of the work on your pieces yourself?" Well, I don't see anyone else in my studio but me, which makes my workweek a tad lonely at times, but Yes.
And then....THE BIG ONE....the one that seemed to clinch the offer: "Do you do your own soldering?" UM....doesn't everyone? How else does a ring become a solid circle or a bail attach to a pendant...how does a piece become a piece? (they informed me that the answer to this Q is "no" for many makers (if this matters to you when buying artisan pieces, ask if any part of their process is sent out)... Anyway, I happily gushed "Yes, that is my favorite thing to do actually! I love to play with fire!"
The two women looked at one another (almost) smiling...and I blurted "OK...Spill It Ladies... what are you two up to? This feels a bit like a jury." They looked at me with very serious faces and said...."Actually, It IS (insert feelings of instant nakedness here....and a ticking clock that seemed to go on forever) .....and we'd like to invite you to participate in our event in New Haven this winter. It is by invitation only and we hand select 150 Artisans, in all mediums, from around the country to be in it. We'd love to have some of your pieces in our show." (this is paraphrasing because remembering verbatim went out the window as I sat there stunned!)
Having your work juried, is probably the most stressful part of Artistry. It's painful. It feels quite personal. So, being invited to a show like this one is a great thing to have happen....it is a beautiful validation of my art.
Aside from making some lovely new friends which is ALWAYS my favorite part of shows.... this was the highlight of my weekend.
I want to encourage anyone who has a dream.....to STEP OUT THERE and FOLLOW IT! Do what you love....and KEEP doing it.... Dreams DO come true, if you are willing to put continual positive energy into them.... It takes (a lot of) time and commitment...NEVER EVER GIVE UP!
Wishing you lots of Love and Laughter,