Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Marveling at the Marvelous

We are marvelous.

I am acquainted with quite a few bead artists. These are people who make art beads -- lampwork, polymer, PMC, etc. I marvel at their ability to take a rod, glob, slab, whatever, and turn it into a work of art that I can hold in my hand and then set to music with my tiny beads. If not for them, a lot of my artistic pieces just would not be. I know that they all have a box of not-so-perfect pieces. I know that they sweat, literally and figuratively, trying to create their visions. I marvel that these artists can work wonderfully well under pressure. They can, at the last minute, churn out a table full of marvelous things. I cannot do any of this, but it is marvelous.

It takes me days to chart a graph for a patterned piece, weeks if I work from a picture. There is a lot of tweaking, a lot of refining, and then if I'm really smart, there is a test strip to make sure the colors work. This is not marvelous, this is time consuming. But for the customer who purchased the pattern, the beaded piece which is the end result can be marvelous.

For the art pieces that don't follow a pattern graph, there is still a lot of angst involved. Again, there is a test strip. Then there is the ripping something apart three or four times before it becomes what I have envisioned. Sometimes a mound of thread or bent wire or culled beads is the only testament to days of blood, sweat and tears. But in the end, when it's placed in the display case at the show, and someone walks by and simply says "marvelous", I marvel that they are talking about a little piece of me.

For kits, there is the sending off of a bag of beads and scant instructions to an angel who takes my vision and stitches life into it. Weeks of work and rework go into these. This is not marvelous, this is exhausting. But for the stitcher who must have that special kit, the end result can be marvelous.

Perhaps the most marvelous thing of all is the look on someones face when they find that perfect art bead, or that perfect pattern, or that perfect kit, or that perfect piece of jewelry. And better still, they marvel that we, humble bead makers and beaders, are able to create marvelous works of art from a bit of nothing.

We are marvelous!


Anonymous said...

What wonderful words of wisdom! I think I'll print it up and keep it to read when nothing seems to be going together right and I don't have just the right color, finding, bead, etc. If I just keep on trying, something will come out of it.
Thanks, I needed that.

Bead-Mused said...

You are quite welcome, Mrs. R. Believe me -- I have lots of those days where it seems that all I am capable of making is a big pile of colorful poo! And somedays, it's not even colorful!!!But today I was waxing philosophical.