Several months ago my good friend (and fellow metalsmith) Sarah and I were talking about how we needed a group of other metalsmiths to bounce ideas off of. We wanted people whose work we respected and who were a good fit to the two of us. The first person I thought of was Nena Potts, a local jeweler and all around fun person. Sarah suggested Carolyn Ruff, another local jeweler and great person as well. Sarah and I, as the founding members of the group, decided four people were enough because, well, we had the best of the best in our opinion. Nena hosted the first meeting (and by meeting I mean happy hour) and a new tradition was formed.
Last night was my turn to host and, as usual, the group didn’t disappoint. Nena has been struggling with show rejection, a large show piece she’s been working on and basic creative roadblocks. Boy, I can relate. She took out her showpiece so we could begin oohing and ahhing over it and, as luck would have it, she dropped it. Only a foot, but far enough to chip off a piece of enamel. We all felt her pain. A chorus of curse words from all of us went up and more wine was poured. Bummer, Nena! Sarah, being the professional enamelist of the group, assured her it was fixable even though she’d glued in the top. Still, a sad moment.
Sarah and Carolyn didn’t bring anything new to show and it was apparent that all of us were having a little creative difficulties as of late. I showed the pieces of my next ring design and everyone seemed to really like it. Basically, the whole concept of the group is to get together, drink some wine and chat about geeky metal stuff that no one seems to want to hear. We discussed how the economy has affected us and what shows we were planning to do or apply for over the next year.
Next meeting is in Nena’s studio and we’re planning to bring our show photos for a group critique. Since Nena and Carolyn have done the show circuit for so many years, I’m excited to get some feedback from them regarding the shots I submit. I’m so glad to have these great women in my life!