This week we are interviewing Jane Font of Daisy Jane Designs. Jane joined the Etsy Metal Clay Team in February 2009.
Have any special hobbies?
We both like to read, listen to music, and watch way too many movies. Mostly we like horror movies. Zombies are the best! I also love to spend time in my studio working with metal clay!
What is your business name and website address?
Daisy Jane Designs. As of yet I do not have my own website.
Your shop address?
How did you find out about metal clay and then start working with it? How long?
I first learned about metal clay while I was off work for 3 weeks due to mono. This was in early 2007. It was horrible! The only thing I could do was lay in bed and for the 3 weeks I didn’t even leave my house. So, while I was lying in bed I watched a lot of TV. One day I saw Nana Mizushima making her silver leaf pendant. I was fascinated! I started reading everything I could find. I bought books and DVDs and within a few weeks I convinced my husband that I really needed to buy the big expensive starter kit. He relented and here I am!
What drives you to make jewelry?
Are you disciplined or do you go with the flow and work when you feel like it?
I pretty much work when I feel like it. I have tried in the past sitting down and just doing something…it never turns out very good. I have to have a good solid idea before I sit down to make a piece of jewelry. My frustration lies in the fact that I have time and will but no ideas at times.
Won any awards for your jewelry? for anything else?
At this time I have not won any awards for my jewelry. I have a ring and a pendant that will be featured in a magazine this summer though. I have won awards in the past in small art competitions for drawing and painting though.
Do you do any other type of art?
I love to draw! I’m not very good at it unless I can see what I am drawing. I don’t paint often anymore. My medium of choice for giving my drawings color is colored pencil and water color pencil. I don’t do anything with my drawings at this time, it’s just a hobby for me to enjoy.
What is your art sensibility - precise or organic?
Precise, which kind of aggravates me because I LOVE organic shapes! However, whenever I try for organic it just looks sloppy.
There is a huge arts festival in Park City every year. It is full of very expensive pieces of art ranging from glass work, to wood work, to jewelry, to painting and photography, and everything in between. This last summer I went to the show with a friend. Hoping to draw a bit of attention I made us each a necklace to wear to the show. We were asked by several artists what artist had made the necklaces. When I told them I did they asked what gallery I showed at. That really helped to boost my confidence. In fact I’m going to work on getting some of my work in a gallery this summer.
What is your favorite tool for working with metalclay?
My rubber tipped clay shaper. It is an extremely important tool that no metal clay artist should be without. I didn’t see the need for one when I first started using metal clay. Now I know that I couldn’t work without it. My ring bands are stronger and more finished looking and my bails are more securely attached.
Where do you work? A photo of your work space.
I have a spare bedroom in my basement where I am able to store all of my equipment and do all of my work from creating to finishing. I don’t have a photo right now (and it’s not really in any condition to be photographed at this moment ;)
What is your favorite thing to make?
Anything! As long as I have an idea and I’m working on it, that’s my favorite. I tend to make a lot of rings. I really enjoy making them because a lot of attention has to be paid in making the joints as solid as possible. I enjoy tedious, detailed work.
I do use sterling silver snap settings for my rings with large stones. I purchase sterling silver chain in bulk but measure and cut it myself. I also use fine silver bezel cups. That is about it though. I make all of my own clasps, jump rings and ear wires.
How do you work, and when? (for ex. assembly line or one at a time)
I have done both assembly line work and one offs. If I have enough ideas and pieces to work on then I will do a bit on one, set it aside to dry while I start another one. Fire one piece and sand another while the fired one cools. I think I prefer to have more than one project going at a time, otherwise I get impatient and that’s when things don’t go the way they should.
Do you have any kind of creative ritual?
Not really. Sometimes I’ll listen to music, usually I don’t. One thing I do like to do while I work is listen to a movie. Next to my studio is our movie room. I like to have a movie on in there so I can hear it. Usually a movie I know well as I can picture it in my mind. I always associate that piece with that movie afterwards so I have to be careful what movie I choose.
How do you hold onto ideas that you don't have time to pursue NOW!
Yes! Usually they are inspired by an object, or a song, or a memory. Whenever I see the object, hear the song, or think back on the memory I’m reminded that I need to get busy! I try to never let an idea go. In fact, I have several right now that are begging me to get started!
Do you ever use a sketchbook?
I tried using a sketchbook when I first started. I think it’s a good idea, I just forget about doing it. Once in awhile I will sketch something on a scrap paper if I am afraid that I’ll lose the idea. I usually lose the scrap of paper but because I went through the action of sketching it out I remember the idea.
Do you ever teach classes and where?
I have not taught any classes as of yet but I am working with a friend who runs a local art guild. I may be teaching a class very soon.
Sea Side Dwelling Necklace
Do you make a living at it?
Nope, but that’s the dream!
Do you do custom orders?
Most of what I do is custom work. I love custom orders!
What are you working on currently?
I am not working on any particular pieces right now. However, I am working on a few techniques with each new piece. I am very interested in layers of different textures. How they look lying next to each other or layered one on top of another. I like using different textures to suggest separate items: a linear texture for the sky, a sandpaper texture for a beach, etc.
What's next on your agenda to make?
Hollow forming is something I have not worked with too much. I have several ideas requiring hollow forms that I really do need to get working on. My excuse for not doing it yet is that my wood clay dried out ;)
How do you make time for everything you want to do?
Unfortunately I don’t. Working full time, going to school full time, and being a wife and a dog mom take up a lot of my time. But there are those blessed moments where everything is done at relatively the same time and I can take some time for myself.
Anything else you'd like to tell us about yourself?
My husband is so supportive of my work and my goals. He’s never negative when I start talking about quitting my job to make a full time go of my jewelry, even though that’s not realistic at this time.
Thank you Jane, it has been a pleasure getting to know you.