Each week one of our contributors gives you a sneak peek into their studio, creative process or inspirations. We ask a related question of our readers and hope you'll leave comments! As an incentive, we offer a prize each week to bribe you to use that keyboard and tell us what you think. The following week a winner is chosen at random from all eligible entries.
Congratulations to Bijoux Gems Joy on winning a $15 voucher from Rebecca!
Contact her to claim your prize!
My trunk and art show at Allegory Gallery.
Welcome this week to Inside the Studio with Humblebeads. I'm away in Pennsylvania this weekend teaching a retreat hosted by Andrew Thornton of Allegory Gallery. We are having quite an amazing time.
A funny little thing happened on the drive over that has been churning in my brain all weekend, so I thought I would share.
I bought a magazine to browse during the long drive and when I pulled it to look over while we waited for our dinner, I mentioned how the magazine was quite a splurge. Rosanne asked if it was like a $15 splurge, which seems pretty high for a magazine. Nope, it was $22, quite a splurge for a magazine. And then a thought came to me and I asked Rosanne jokingly, "Well, really though what's the price of inspiration?"
The invaluable source of inspiration.
And this is what has been running though my head all weekend. It's okay to invest in inspiration. In fact, I highly recommend it. There is a wealth of free inspiration. Take a walk in the woods or a garden, head on over to Pinterest or your local library, pull out your camera and be a tourist in our own town or join one of the many free blog hops or challenges online. This is no shortage of free inspiration.
But the kind of inspiration to invest in comes in the form of knowledge and experiences. Buying inspiring books and magazines to keep in your studio, paying for museum visits or memberships, attending bead shows, signing up for retreats and classes - these are all priceless sources of inspiration that are worth pulling out the credit card!
I'm been enjoying picking though Allegory Gallery's beautifully stocked store and thinking what a shame that all the bead stores in my area have gone out of business. I know so many people think, well I can get a better deal online or a store may have a limited stock but what is the price of the inspiration that a local bead store provides? It's invaluable really and certainly worth the few dollars you may save by ordering something online. And unless you are ordering wholesale it really is only going to be a few dollars difference.
A good bead store will have beautiful examples of jewelry, displays of beads in creative combinations and store owners and employees that can offer tips and advice. A good bead store will offer inspiration in the form of classes, events and challenges. One store, Stony Creek in Ypsilanti, MI had color palettes printed out and hung next to color coordinated displays of Czech glass and seed beads. I wanted to buy everything!
Sue Kennedy of SueBeads and Rosanne shopping.
So I have a challenge for you.
It's a big one and it's a long term one. I challenge every Art Bead Scene reader to head to your local bead store once a month.
Get to know the owners, shop, take classes if they offer classes. Take an art bead and match up accents beads for it from your local shop. Become part of that bead store's community. If your bead store is a little lack luster, ask if they have thought about carrying a few of favorite products and share a resource or two with them. Now, not everyone has a local bead store. So for some of you a local bead store may be a 2 hour drive. Bring a girlfriend and make a day of it. I know I plan to start traveling once a month to one that is 45 minutes away that I have neglected.
Pendants by Andrew Thornton
If we stop supporting our local bead stores, we are going to lose out on something very valuable - and that will be the price of lost inspiration!
To enter this week's drawing simply let me know if you plan to take the challenge or what has been an inspiration splurge that you have invested in lately. The prize this week is a $25 gift certificate to Humblebeads.com.