I am a maker and creator of items people can touch, wear and love. Iím an accomplished, professional artist. What does that mean? It means my work has been featured in numerous books, magazines, publications, and exhibits; people buy my stuff. I have been a maker most of my adult life.
I also love to design and create artisan jewelry.
What is "artisan"? It's the love and passion of designing and handcrafting each piece individually. Of combining shapes and colors; making jewelry artistically unique and pleasing to the eye and soul. It should enhance your mood, be inspirational, and above all make you happy. It's the state or quality associated with being an artist.
Most all my work is one-of-a-kind so you may enjoy an original piece no one else will own.
My work has mostly been a commissioned or exhibit basis only, since I expanded my work I created an online gallery for those interested in adding my work to their collection.
I also work with leather tooling, stone, slate, gourds, natural materials, stained, fused and lampwork glass.
My first art work was done on the walls of my home with crayons, pencils or even my mom's lipstick. By the time I was in the 3rd grade my art work adorned the bulletin board in front the principal's office, and that's how it began.
High school brought on commissioned work to recreate, design, and restore our schools massive 50 year old mural. During my senior year my art and design work was plagiarized by a major nationally known department store and published under their name. That was my first lesson in copyright.
I was awarded several art scholarships which I turned down. I remained and lived at home, continued my education, and held a part-time job to help support my mother after my father passed away. I paid for college and art supplies through freelance and commissioned artwork.
I thank my parents for not punishing me for drawing on walls. I thank them for buying me coloring books which they couldn't afford. I didnít want to color within the lines; I wanted an open space to create.
My art instructors made sure my fingers were covered in oil paints, my hands emerged in wet, cold clay, my nose was filled with the smell of acrylic, my hair and face covered in sawdust from carving, and my finger callused or burned by working with metal, a torch, and polishing.
My mom and instructors opened my mind and eyes to ingenuity, the ability to think then create, to absorb what was around me and turn it into something; anything. Each time I feel the pain of calluses or my fingers splitting open from grinding, sanding, twisting silver or metal, tooling, and braiding leather, I think of my parents, the devotion, their hard work and their belief in me. I continued my education in a multitude of mediums; I became the professional artisan of our family.
I cared for my mother who in her mid 90's suffered through Alzheimer's disease. Even then as she had moments when she'd realize who I was she'd ask "ÖJulie, what have you made lately?" My mother, my friend, passed away in October 2008. Her dream for me, as with any mother, was for her child to be successful, to give back something learned; something created using your hands, your heart, your soul, and your imagination.
ABOUT THE JEWELRY
All jewelry is individually designed and handcrafted in my studio. I use sterling and fine silver, various metals, semi-precious and lab-grown gems, natural stones, lampwork focal beads, dichroic glass, leather, and a variety of fine materials from around the world.