Becoming a jewelry artist was never in my plans. Professionally, I was a kitchen designer. However, there was a river rock necklace that I passed up when I was traveling in 1999. In 2005 I saw a necklace that reminded me of it. When I checked out the artist at a gallery I learned about a metalsmithing workshop with Lois Bertillino. I started the following week. week.
For the next two years (and again in 2013) I attended week-long workshops with Marilynn Nicholson at the Taos School of Metalsmithing and Lapidary Design, www.taosjewelryschool.com. Here I got my introduction to setting stones.....and buying them, as Taos has a great rock and mineral store (as do Santa Fe and Alberquerque). Another highlight for me was taking Master Symposiums with Andy Cooperman in 2008 at the Revere Academy of Jewelry Art in San Francisco, www.revereacademy.com. I have also had sessions at Danaca Design in Seattle, www.danacadesign.com.
A major turning point for me was taking the Artist Trust's EDGE Course, www.artiststrust.org. I had an eight week/50 hour class for the development of the professional business aspect of being an artist. It focused on building a strong portfolio and networking. Our group gave a public presentation at the Whatcom Museum and had a show, "The Creative Edge", in August 2009 at the Blue Horse Gallery in Bellingham.