Monday, July 18, 2011

Looking Back

I found these images of my first art show recently. It was Art Antiques and Auto, a show in my hometown of Denton, Texas in either 2000 or 2001. I did that show for several years, the last one I did was in 2004. I got Best in Show this first year, and won a cash prize! It's crazy to look back on my booth and my small amount of inventory and see how far I have come.

Some of these pieces still stand out in my mind and I think they were good, solid designs. The pendant on the top left above is one of my all time favorites and I would be proud to create it today. It had a Sea Shell, Fire Agate, Amber, Peridot and Carnelian. All the stones were bezel set and connected by jump rings so that they moved. I remember the lady that bought that from me, I hope she still has it and loves it.
I wish I could get my hands on some more affordable Fire Agate now!

I remember lots of people asked about that little ikebana bud vase, I had gotten it at my job at Home to Garden. I also learned early on that if you put a dish of candy out people will grab a piece and not even look at your work!

Also crazy to see how low I priced my work then! Of course silver was much, much cheaper, but I don't even think I was taking the cost of the stones and my labor into account. I just didn't know how to value my work.
Oh well, I had great support from family and friends, and I learned a lot at these early shows. This was all pre-etsy and when I had no website. I intended to learn html to build a site, but of course that never happened. Things got so much easier when etsy came along and also artist website services like Other Peoples Pixels that just let you plug in images and text.

More of those pendants. I need to bring that design back, it is similar to the Sun Moon and Stars Pendant that I recently showed you, but much more simple.

Dad in my booth. Both of my parents have been so supportive of my creative endeavors from the beginning! I did have an ez-up, black table clothes and the same mirror I have today, but my booth sure has changed a lot. Check out my booth at my last show.

I have really great memories of these early days of jewelry making. I remember creating these pieces in my first duplex in Fort Worth. I was pretty fresh out of college and in a newish relationship. I had my workbench in the kitchen of that little duplex and I was doing what I loved. Frank was always very supportive too and would come help out at the shows, and he still does when he can. I think those little small town one day shows are a great way to get started, especially if you have a built in audience of people that you know. I got a letter in the mail the other day from this show wanting me to participate again. I don't think I would now, it is more focused on the Antiques and Auto than the Art, and I think I have priced myself out of being able to sell my work there, but I certainly am grateful for the experience I gained there.


betsy bensen said...

you've come a long way, baby! Your current set up is awesome!

andrea said...

This was fun to see,thanks for sharing it!

tkmetalarts said...

Your current booth looks so professional, but your work looked great even back then.