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Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Schooled by Yoda...

No, I wasn't transported into a Star Wars movie...I wasn't even watching a Star Wars movie.  In fact, I've only seen one movie all the way through--one of the new-fangled ones, not even an original!  All that said, schooled by Yoda, I was.

As you know, if you've read my previous post, I've been on a class-taking binge the past week or so. I had two classes in Arlington at Bead Fest; one with Linda Larsen  of Objects and Elements, and one with Viki Lareau, of The Bead Factory, on Marketing and Selling Jewelry.  Nothing against, Viki, as she is extremely knowledgeable...but I took her class out of necessity, not because I really wanted to.  I enjoy the creative process 1 BILLION times more than the business process:-( Linda, though, inspired me to push my creative boundaries.  Her class was all about tab setting and riveting, two things I already did, but skills I needed to refine.  This class did the trick!  For the project, I set a spark plug gapper in tabs, instead of the agate slices and other natural stones like everyone else [(call me a rebel).  There is a story behind the spark plug rapper, but that's for another post.] 

Linda and I were talking after class and she asked me if I had other gappers.  I told her I did; she said she would like to see me make another pendant with one and really get creative this time and send her pictures of it (some may have taken that as a less than a compliment, but I didn't--she had already said she liked the one I made in class.)  I took it as a challenge and am going to create something truly fabulous of which to send her pictures.

Excuse the photo, it was taken after class in poor lighting and with no prop...The back plate is nickel silver and riveted to the top is a brass plate with tabs holding the spark plug gapper. You can't tell in the photo, but the top plate is raised from the bottom one.  The top is rolled down to created a bail for a neck wire.

I know, I know.  You're wondering where Yoda fits in all of this, and I'm getting there, I promise.  No one ever accused me of NOT being verbose! 

My next go-round was in Spring, Texas at Spring Beads (in Old Town Spring) with Richard Salley and Jessica Papke, of Rosy Revolver.  (It was supposed to be Martina Stein, but her plans changed, and JJ came in her place--ends up as a positive for me.)  

This was a series of three classes, in which we created three rings.  I learned so many new tips and tricks and gained much-needed confidence.  A HUGE thank you to Richard and Jessica! 

Here is where Yoda comes to play.  I've never really been one to gracefully accept compliments in person.  Typically, real-time compliments embarrass me, and I tend to discount whatever it is people compliment or mumble a self-deprecating answer or some other noncommittal response.  This is what happened on the day of my last class in Spring.  Richard was walking around looking at everyone's work and stopped to watch me work.  He said, "You do nice work." He then turned to walk away, at which time I replied, "I try." Well, if you are a Star Wars fan, you know what happens next...he stopped, turned around and responded, "You know what Yoda says...Do. Or do not.  There is NO try...and you DO."  That was a defining moment for me.  I vowed to try to be more graceful and accepting when complimented in person. It can only serve to help me grow as a person.

Needless to say, it was a boost in confidence to have Richard Salley tell me I do nice work.  It came at a time when I was particularly doubting my talents and my creative process.  Those words from Richard, and the wonderfully kind and motivational words from Jessica (who also told me I have a good eye for design and am talented) were the impetuses I needed to nudge me to greater define my aesthetic and to push through the doubts, fears, and paralysis, that plague me.

Here are two of the rings I made in the classes with Richard and Jessica...again, not the best of photos, but you'll get the picture.

Signing off...
Until Next Time.