This week's artist is a jewelry artist. The shop is called Alegro Arts and it is a shop on Etsy.
Here is our interview with artist, Gary.
Briefly describe what you make?
Handmade jewelry and beads. Right now, I'm focusing on stringing, beadwork, and polymer clay.
What mediums do you enjoy working in most?
I love working with natural stone, theres just so much variation and possibility that I could never come up with on my own. My wife will find the most amazing stone or glass beads, and its a challenge to come up with ways to use them.
I started working with polymer clay last year, and I really like the possibilities of that medium. I finally made some pendants that I like well enough to try to sell last month.
How long have you been creating craft?
As long as I can remember. But not always jewelry. I just love to learn and work with my hands, so I try to pick up whatever people around me are willing to teach. I've learned cross-stitching from a friend of mine as a way to pass time on long bus trips. I've done some sewing, crochet, painting, airbrushing, and even air brushed t-shirts at a comic book store for a while.
How did you get started?
When I was a musician, I worked for a while in musical instrument repair. A lot of the techniques used there are the same as jewelry making, like silver and brass work, soldering, brazing, and plating. I started doing some repair work on silver jewelry, then my wife pushed me into going all out into making my own.
Where does the name of your shop come from?
Allegro is a musical term, it means "brightly, with spirit" I was a music major and professional musician for a while, and I liked the term. I decided to call it "Allegro Arts" instead of "Allegro Jewelry" because I know I may change gears and find new mediums whenever I get inspired.
What would you most want people to know about your work?
Every piece has a story, some inspiration that made me put it together that way. That does make it a little difficult for me to make multiple copies of a design, but it works for me.
Im not really in this for the money. If I make enough to pay for my hobby, I'm happy. I may not be rich, but I do enjoy what I'm making, and that comes out in the designs.
What words of advice do you have for other artists?
Don't try to follow trends or make whats hot right now. Make what you love, what inspires you. If you just try to make stuff that sells, you'll be bored with your work.
Come and see Gary's work at Allegro Arts!
And while you are at Etsy come visit with us and see all of the great new things that have been added to the shop for the holidays!
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