Interview with the artist - Mari from Wire Fox

Today I ask you to give Mari a warm welcome. I got to know her on deviantArt where I fell in love with her creations at first sight. I'm sure so will you.

When I saw my favorite piece for the first time, I had to ask if she would do my little interview. Isn't this comb gorgeous?? You know how much I love octopi!

Copper comb "Octopus"

Now let's jump right in!

Tell us a little about who you are and where you come from.

My name is Marina and I'm from Ukraine.

What's your art and how did you get to do it in the first place?
I'm a wire worker now. In my work I use copper wire, gemstones and glass. I began with polymer clay and had been working with it for 2 or 3 years. Some years ago I had a crisis. So I tried to find new materials that would be able to interest me. I used wool, felt and vintage supplies.
But past autumn I decided to try to work with wire again. It has changed my crafty life.

Copper brooch "Honey"

I think this is one of the most asked questions - where does your inspiration come from?

My inspiration comes from the material. When I choose new beads and cabochons to buy - then my imagination flashes with new ideas. I really like metal, copper, because it's possible to create any form that you are able to imagine.
Also I try to find inspiration in nature ^-^ by picking out and re-designing organic forms and objects.

Copper comb "Faun"

Do you do other crafts, if yes, what?

I don't do any other crafts. But I'm also a digital artist. I have been a designer for more than 7 years, the last 5 of them I have been a 3d artist in game development.
And I wish to spend more time on painting.

Which one of your pieces is your absolute favorite?

I have to mention two of my pieces. The first one is the brooch "Hurricane". I like it for its simple, very dynamic shapes. I think this brooch resonates with my soul, my imagination about myself.
And the second - comb "Kracen". It's my favorite object of art, I created it for a contest. And it made 3rd place. (See, I'm not the only one who loves it so! ~ Cat)

Brooch "Hurricane"

Is there someone whom you admire and who inspires you?

Oh yeah! Lunarieen and Amareno Style from Poland and Imnium from Croatia. I think they're gods/goddesses of wire ^-^  
If you had free choice of just one supply you can use for your art, what would you be dreaming of, no matter how expensive?

Definitely it would be silver.

Do you sell online, if yes, where can we find you?

You can find me on Etsy and DaWanda. I have a Russian shop, too.

Is there anything you feel you need or want to tell the world outside now?

Be creative! Smile, fall in love, take risks, and to do crazy things sometimes. Often do what you love, and be persistent. Do not give up after the first failure.
Watch your health too!
Life is wonderful ^-^

Bracelet "Green Owl"

Now am I right or what? Of course I could only show you a few of Mari's pieces, and believe me, the choice was really tough!
I hope you'll take the time and have a look at her shop and dream a little ...


Quote of the week

Are you a perfectionist? I ask myself that question from time to time and yesterday it popped up because of today's movie.
With some things I am a perfectionist. There are times when I fiddle and fiddle with a wire to make it sit right for example. There are other times when I'm very generous, at cooking for example. I guess I'm just not a true gourmet.
Anyway, I could never imagine to be anything like this man obviously was. Obsessed with details to the brink of madness. After watching the movie I read up on him a bit more and it made me wonder if you have to be obsessed to be a true perfectionist ...

Howard Hughes: Hello, Mr. Mayer. I don't know if you remember me. My name's Howard Hughes. I was wondering if I could have a moment of your time.
Louis B. Mayer: Oh yeah, Howard Hughes. The airplane picture, right?
Hughes: Exactly.
Mayer: Yeah, I remember.
Hughes: Hell's Angels. You heard of it. Good.
Mayer: Yes.
Hughes: Listen, I was wondering if I could have a moment of your time. I need a few cameras.
Mayer: Yeah?
Hughes: Yeah. Two, to be exact.
Mayer: Uh-huh.
Hughes: I already bought every camera I could find, but we're shooting our big dogfight sequence this week, and I need two more, desperately. Do you think MGM could help me out?
Mayer: With what?
Hughes: Cameras.
Mayer: Oh, with the actual cam... We're not usually in the practice of helping out the competition.
Hughes: Ah.
Guy: So, how many cameras do you have now?
Hughes: 24.
Mayer (coughing, then laughing): Wait a minute. You have 24 cameras?
Hughes: That's right.
Mayer: And you need two more?
Hughes: Yeah.
Mayer: You don't think you got it with 24?
Hughes: No. No, sir.
Mayer: You know, I think ... I think we've got'em all ... Don't we have'em all? All used?
Guy: They're all used.
Mayer: All 26 of them.
Hughes: I only need two, sir.
Mayer: Jesus Christ, sonny
Hughes: Howard.
Mayer: Howard. Let me give you a little advice, huh? Why don't you take your oil money ...
Hughes: Drill bits.
Mayer: Take your drill bit money, and why don't you put it in the bank?
Hughes: Uh-huh.
Mayer: Because if you continue making the movie the way that you are, there isn't gonna be a distributor who'll want to distribute it. You're not gonna find anybody who wants to see the movie, and you're not gonna have any more oil money.

Hughes: Hm.
Mayer: So, welcome to Hollywood.
Hughes: Yeah. Well, I'll be sure to remember that, Mr Mayer.
Mayer: Good luck.
Hughes: Alright.
Mayer: He needs 26 to make it work? He's out of his mind.

Hell's Angels cost about $3.8 million to make which made it the most expensive movie ever made at its time of release.

The Aviator, USA, 2004


From summer to fall

For some people the transition from summer to fall is difficult. They miss the light early in the morning and late in the evening ... the sun ... hot temperatures ... probably the summer vacation ...
I'm different. Fall is my favorite season. I don't mind rain and I avoid too much sunshine (for several reasons), you could say I'm a "middle thing" kind of person. Not too hot, not too cold, not too much sun. Sometimes I think I'm turning into a vampire ;-)

I always used to say I'm not a fan of earthy colors, but that seems to have changed over the years without me even noticing it. When I looked into my shops, I found one or the other piece that clearly shows it.

Don't you see the color of fall leaves in this collar? The dark red, the orange, brown and gold ...

Pebbles in the stream

Or how about this bracelet? Those beads make me feel as if I can taste the last berries on my tongue.

Wire knit bracelet with Miyuki triangle beads

I found some other pieces that say "Fall" to me, this one by my friend Dawn for example.

Wire wrapped caramel stone necklace

Isn't this a stunning maple leaf? Michele combined it with a necklace in fall tones, a perfect combination if you ask me! Shhh, come on, ask me.

Real leaf necklace

I found another fall leaf, this time carved from carnelian, in Violetmoon's shop.

Carved leaf necklace

Maybe I have taken away your frustration about fall a bit? Look up into the trees, admire the colors of their leaves and don't get sad when they get dry and fall off, they'll be back in spring!

Do you want to know what the other Jewelry Artisans Community bloggers have to say about this subject? Yes, you maybe guessed it already, this is the September blog carnival post. Well, go and see if they are fans of fall or not!

N Valentine Studio
Violetmoon's Corner
Jewelry Art by Dawn

And this time even Ponder sneaked in!
Ponder the Cat


Interview with the artist - Irith from RioRita

Today I'm very proud to feature a fellow member of my jewelry forum "Jewelry Artisans Community", Irith Mashiah. Irith has me constantly stunned with her unique and beautiful creations.
Let me show you a few of my own favorites.

My recent favorite of Irith's pieces are these earrings with tourmalines.

Or have a look at this oh so luscious necklace with sapphires and red agate!

I'll give the word to Irith now however or I'll be tempted to show you her whole shop before she gets the chance to speak about herself.

Tell us a little about who you are and where you come from.

My name is Irith Rita Mashiah. I was born in Israel and have lived here ever since.
I grew up in Tiberias, a small town named after the Roman Caesar Tiberius, by the Sea of Galilee which is actually a lake.
What's your art and how did you get to do it in the first place?
In spite of the fact that I have an academic degree in arts from the University of Haifa, I had worked as a legal secretary for about 25 years. I was not very  happy with this job as I felt it did not go well with my character. It came to me one day that I should take my dreams a little more seriously, and I decided to begin my studies as a metalsmith in evening classes at the Wizo Institute in Haifa.
Luckily for me, our firm had moved to a different area in the country, and I could go on early retirement. This was the chance for me to become an "official" jewelry designer and metalsmith in silver, gold and stones.
Silver and garnet necklace
I think this is one of the most asked questions - where does your inspiration come from?

I truly believe that the ancient historical background of Tiberias and the beauty of the Golan mountains, half surrounding the lake, have turned me into a person with an eternal need for beauty and have enhanced my creativity.
Tell us a fun thing about yourself.
Sometimes I think I should take myself less seriously. When I play with my grandchildren I become a kid at heart too!

Do you do other crafts, if yes, what?

I used to love to collect old blouses and shirts, cut them into different shapes and create patchwork items, such as cushion covers, pictures, bedspreads.
Also - every once in a while I try to draw and paint.
Which one of your pieces is your absolute favorite? Which one was the hardest to make and why?
This flower necklace is only one of my favorites.

It was also one of the more complicated items. The reason for this is that creating a hollow form flower requires using a few strips of flat silver and soldering them together to create the shape of a flower. One should also take care to design the necklace in a way which will  prevent it from turning over while being worn.
Is there someone whom you admire and who inspires you?
I admire so many great artists, each in his own field. There is no particular person who inspires me.
If you had free choice of just one supply you can use for your art, what would you be dreaming of, no matter how expensive?
I wish I could use 24k Gold as freely as I use other metals. It is very malleable and easy to work with.
Do you sell online, if yes, where can we find you?
I sell online on Etsy at RioRita.
Is there anything you feel you need or want to tell the world outside now?
May you never lose your temper!
Try to be creative every minute of your life, but also learn to relax from time to time.
Prehnite silver ring
Have fun browsing in Irith's shop and if you feel the irresistible urge to treat me with the tourmaline earrings, I won't say No!! ;-) 


Quote of the week

Today I'll make another trip back into my childhood. I'm not sure if the movie I took the quote from - although it's not a real quote, you'll see what I mean - really scared me, I can't remember, but it sure fascinated me so much that I had to own it.

Let me ask you something first. Have you ever wondered about policemen on TV or in movies who feel the urge to taste every unknown substance they come across? Someone leaves behind a bag with a strange content - hey, let's taste it, maybe it'll knock the shoes off my feet!
The doctor in my movie takes the prize, however. Hat off, doc, you are one brave guy. Or maybe just terribly, terribly dumb. Well, the year was 1955, maybe it's just my long experience of mystery, horror and fantasy movies that makes me feel so superior.
Curious now?

I'll give you a short summary of what has happened until now, but I'll leave out the part that our hero doesn't know, it's more fun for you that way.
We are in a happy little town in the desert.
A professor found dead, colleague blaming a rare disease. Local doc (our hero) sceptical.
Young good looking lady student arriving to help professor with experiments against world hunger. Rats and bunnies growing like crazy after injections.
Doc taking a walk in the desert with young good looking lady student. Sudden unexplainable rock slide.
Young good looking lady student showing doc the professor's animals. Professor not amused.
Dead horses on farm, only bare bones and strange substance (!) left behind.

More dead horses, a crashed pick-up truck .... which takes us to our scene ...

Policeman #1: Take a look at this, Doc.
Everyone looking at large spots of strange substance
Policeman #2: I can't understand why I didn't spot this stuff when I hauled those skeletons out of here and stacked them on the other side.
(Get it? Strange stuff where skeletons were before. Skeletons, remember that!)
Doc - our hero: They were here?
Policeman #2: Yes, Sir. Why?
(Oh, could those skeletons have anything to do with the strange .... naaah.)
Doc - our hero - dipping a finger into the stuff and sniffing it: There doesn't seem to be any distinctive odor.
Doc touching his tongue with the stuff on his finger (!!): Mmm. Wow.

Oh really? Wow? Look at his face! Doesn't taste good? How weird!

You want to know what it was? Well, let me give some of you a good nightmare. I know not all of you are necessarily as fascinated by this as I am ... guess what. Mr Dead Professor and Mr Other Professor tested their injections not only on rats, rabbits and guinea pigs, but also on tarantulas.
And one of them escaped during a lab fire ...

Happy dreams! ;-)

Tarantula, USA, 1955


Pebbles in the stream

Sometimes if I like a design, I just can't stop myself and make a little series.
These collars were so much fun, I'm almost sure there will be more, but for now it's enough.

The name "Pebbles in the Stream" comes from a childhood memory. I remember several times that I spent at little creeks with one or the other friend, and I can still see the pebbles in the clear water. To be honest it's surprising that I didn't come home wet more often.

The base of these collars are knitted from two strands of differently colored copper wire. That makes them not as slinky as my knitted jewelry usually is, but sturdier, and the effect of the two colors is just lovely.
On that "stream" there are pebbles of all kinds. It was the perfect occasion to dig into my stash and to use some of the beads I have had around forever. That doesn't mean I just threw them together randomly, though. I tried to make the mix fit the wire knit base in color and mood.

All three of them are available in my shops now, one in each shop, here, here or here ;-)
Let me know if there's any other color range you'd like to see!


As per request ...

.... I finally proudly present a collage of the wonderful prizes I won for making 3rd place in the "loomwork" category at the International Bead Award 2012 by Perlen Poesie. It had been such a %/(§%&§/% day, but when I came home to find this parcel on my stairs, I forgot all about the day and almost danced with joy. I hadn't thought about a prize at all, but if I had I'm sure this would have been beyond my imagination!
Just look at all those bead colors ....

For those curious to see all the winners in all the categories they are online now - here.

For those curious to see the first piece I made with some of the beads - here you go. Those peanut beads by Preciosa Ornela have wonderful metallic colors, and I thought a simple, yet elegant design would be the best for using them. The collar is so lightweight and comfortable although it's a large piece.

Wire knit collar "Egyptian Dream"

I am desperately trying to catch up after spending a few days with an uninvited bug who doesn't really feel like leaving although I tried to be as bad a host as possible ;-)
So let me quickly think about what else is new.

I got my first Daily Deviation on deviantArt which was a very pleasant surprise.
I got my first book cabinet set up and full of books which is a real progress in the process of moving everything downstairs. It's not a good idea however to try and move one by my own, not even to just set the upper part down on the floor - no worries, I got it before I was so dumb and actually tried it.
I had a fun photo session with Nicholas Crepea, a photographer from Munich (thank you so much again, Nicholas!), and hope to be able and show you some of the pictures on an extra page on my blog eventually.
All of my laundry is done (sometimes it's the little things that count).

Well. That's all for now, folks. I guess.


Finds of the week

Today I want you to meet my friend Susan. This time it won't be an interview, but I will show you some of her awesome pieces, they will speak for themselves.
I met Susan through the bead looming, but like so many crafty people Susan just won't stick with one technique to express herself.

Let's start with her dolls.

This doll is called "Autumn".
Just have a look at all those details, from her pointy ears to the expressive face. I'm a real fan of her outfit as well. I can just imagine her to go through the woods looking at the leaves changing color, lovingly touching a trunk here or there.

Seeing this doll brings back memories of my childhood. Flat in a meadow full of flowers, exchanging important thoughts with my best friend or watching insects busily running and flying around, studying details on flowers, taking in the beauties of nature - admittedly something I don't do enough by far these days.

Isn't this old man just great?
In the park between my old school and my old church is a little house called "Brunnenhäusle". We used to buy ice cream there when we were kids, and on each corner of the house was a tap where you could drink water for free which of course was great in the summer heat and which gave the name to the place that could be translated as "little fountain house" - we Swabians love our diminutive -le instead of -chen ;-)
I'm digressing again. There is also a chess board painted on the ground and old men (strangely enough I can only remember old men) could play chess there when the weather was nice. I bet this old man is on the way to the park to meet his friends, have a nice talk and maybe play some chess?

Ouch!! ;-) From their piercings I guess these little fellows are used to being pricked by pins. At least they are still smiling!

This beautiful lady can easily be recognized as the Winter in her flowing white gown with all the trimmings and her glittering wand.

This young lady is a bit different from the other ones. I can't even start to imagine what work must have gone into that gorgeous dress of hers. I wish I could tell you some more details about it, but the way it is we'll just have to stare and admire.

Now we'll leave the dolls and get to the bead looming instead. Are you ready for some more eye candy?

Two beautiful cuffs.

Do you remember Betty Boop? It's her gracing this needlecase being all sexy in her short dress.

Isn't this a great color combination for this pattern made by another one of my talented friends, Rebecca Blackwell? The puzzle pieces stand for Autism Awareness.

Susan made this wall hanging for our Art Deco challenge. Art Deco is one of my favorites and she captured it so beautifully in these clear lines. I love how she added the fiber to it.

This was undoubtedly one of the favorite pieces of us all in the group. The little accents make this piece, like the noses on the slippers, with the little whiskers, the steam coming out of the mug and of course the wild 3D bed hair!

Last but not least here we have Susan's steampunk cuff. I have to admit that I'm not as much of a steampunk fan as many of my friends out there, but this cuff appeals to me. I really love the color combination in the background, the muted colors, the vintage looking pattern, the fringe that fits so perfectly and the cleverly hidden crimps on the clasps (did you even notice?). I like that - although there are quite a few metal components on there - it doesn't look like too much.

Let me add that all descriptions were strictly my own. I hope I didn't say anything wrong and if I did, Susan will hopefully correct me, so I can change it.
Another hope of mine is that you had fun with this post. I know I had!!