Sunday, May 18, 2014

Why we do what we do.

I make jewellery for people. Simple idea, but it bears some analysis to really clarify the statement. I make the jewellery. Now, granted, I do farm out some of the jobs, the ones that I would suck at. I'm not a diamond cutter or a lapidary, so stone-cutting is out. Casting is too much like baking for my particular style, so I send that out. I see it as more of an industrial process, best done by someone properly set up to do it. But I make the jewellery. The process is, in some ways, the best part. I like to start with a lump of something and make it into something beautiful. Wax carving has allowed me freer rein to bring the pictures in my head to three-dimensional reality, but there's nothing I like so much as starting off with bar and plate and wrassling it into a piece that looks nothing like bar and plate. There's a magic in that. The thought of laying out a ring on a computer screen and having a machine put it together has a certain appeal, from an intellectual stance, but I think the reality of it would bore me. Of course, it might just frustrate the hell out of me, which I sometimes mistake for fascination, but I digress. I make the jewellery for people. The evolution of my business has been based on this simple concept. I'm not, as such, a designer. I have, through years of experience, become a combination of counsellor, salesman, and police sketch artist. Most people who come to see me have a picture in their head, and it's my job to render that in a two-, and then three-dimensional way. These are the easy ones. It's just a matter of listening carefully and keeping it simple. Some people don't know what they want, exactly, even though it becomes obvious after a bit of digging. A blank piece of paper sitting there between two people is a scary thing indeed. The customers that give me the most trouble are the ones that don't want to spend the money. I'm not in this for the money, as will be obvious to anyone who's seen my accounts, but I do need to be paid, and the industrial jewellery concerns have perverted the industry. Blahblahblah... I'm just rambling now.

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