26 June 2009

Etsy Scavenger Hunt Leads To More Than Pretty Buttons

During an etsy scavenger hunt to discover vintage buttons I came across a lovely supplier. Lynn isn't just stocked full of lovely supplies, she herself is lovely. I received thoughtful emails after making a purchase, but what really made the experience was a tiny hand written note enclosed with my purchase. It included a hand picked button, very lovely, and words of inspiration:
"From one artist to another. Make something beautiful."
So, these are my lovely purchases and I am in charge of making something beautiful out of them. When you buy from someone who cares about her supplies it gives you a greater sense of responsibility to care for them and use the pieces to their potential.

I decided that I wanted to write about Lynn so I check out her profile on etsy to learn more about her. I discover that she has been trained as an artist, which makes me realize how she is able to pick out the most beautiful buttons and buckles, she can envision the new life they are to have. And further investigation into her shop tells me she has some ideas of her own.
I move onto Lynn's flickr page and learn so much about what inspires her. I see photographs of friends, her foster kittens, travels and what really hits me as her inspiration is her surroundings. Plants, architecture and colorful scenery surround her and she takes in these compositions of color and recreates them in her jewelry. Her playful nature seen in her work, the movement of charms on her necklaces and the creation of doll-like figures can only come from someone who loves to frolic with her animals taking away from this friendship a sense of playfulness and a deep appreciation of fun and love of life.
After more time spent on flickr I see that Lynn needs to create, she has to add to her beautiful surroundings it is an intricate part of her life. Can I just say, I wish she were my neighbor, I would have the most beautiful courtyard!
I asked Lynn a few questions as I am most intrigued by an artist who is able to sell supplies. I know that I can't let anything go because I always have a plan for everything.

As an artist do you find it difficult to sell supplies? In my case, no.. I have been a jeweler and a collector a lot of years (MFA-Washington State University-Pullman, WA 1973..I think). I have accumulated SO many buttons in my years and it feels so good to see many of them getting used. I could never, would never use them all. And we approach with different ideas. So another artist comes up with new and different uses that I might not even consider. And buttons are applicable to many kinds of artists. From sewing to collages to hardware.. lots of ways to use them.

Do you have ideas of how your supplies are to be used? Do you wonder what becomes of them? I do wonder what becomes of them..some times. I used to worry about them being destroyed or abused..but I got over it. I figure once they leave my hands they belong to someone else. I can only control my own integrity.

Is it a similar feeling as when you sell a piece of jewelry? You can be excited about the sale yet scared of how well the person will care for your art. Selling a piece of jewelry is different. I wonder what made THIS piece be chosen? People who like and "get" my jewelry are usually self-assured individuals with a good sense of humour. They don't need to look like everyone else.

When making jewelry which form is your favorite for expressing yourself? When I was able to do my own metalwork I did very delicate pieces with granulation and lots of detail in unexpected places. I was especially fond of doing rings and bracelets because they are what I wear and enjoy. Not being able to work like I used to (got very sick from chemicals).. I had to learn to use other softer materials that I was not used to. Now I love to do necklaces that are eclectic and treasure troves. I love mixing up materials and buttons, beads and found objects lend themselves into my work. I love my Boobie Babes. They are very difficult to do..to get the balance and find the right amount of matching or complementing buttons and beads takes forever. but when it is done and right..they are so fun to wear out in public.

If you are in need of something lovely for your work, or you want to buy a piece of fun jewelry take a look at Lynn's Shop. You won't be disappointed. www.Lynnaddison.etsy.com

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