It was fun yesterday to look up some older work and remember how the particular piece was created. One thing that I noticed in most of the pieces that I chose was an underlying spiritual and/or female/feminine theme. The spirit doll necklaces have a female-like form and the name itself implies something otherworldly. The Buddhist Prayer for Peace necklace. The British women pictured in the tile bracelet. Curious.
Today I’ve put together some pictures of work that compares “then” and “now.”
Early Wine Bottle Stoppers (2003-04)
When I started making wine bottle stoppers, I made them in both round and cylindrical style tops. Depending on the surface design, the round ones looked like either golf balls or ice cream. Someone even joked that they’d make a nice gear shift. In reality the round tops were not easy to cover with polymer clay resulting in air pockets that bubbled to the surface.
Current Wine Bottle Stoppers (2005-current)
Since 2005 my wine bottle stoppers are all cylindrical. It makes production work much easier. The new stems are slightly longer and the smaller gasket rings give a more polished look to the finished piece. Instead of a melange of designs, I offer several starter sets in various colors and designs. Sets are presented in a display handmade by a fellow Bolton Artisan Guild member, Paul Casco. When I’m in the midst of filling wholesale orders, it is jokingly referred to as BS day.
Early Business Card Cases (2003-04)
I approached my first card cases much the same way I did my early bottle stoppers; a variety of colors and designs but not a very cohesive presentation. I was really stuck in a neutral color zone. Not that this is a bad thing yet when I look at these cases I no longer find them visually appealing. Perhaps the presentation takes away something from them too. I think I’d call this my early faux stone stage.
Current Business Card Cases (2006-current)
My how things have changed. I now approach my card case designs as I do my bottle stoppers; starter sets in set colors and designs. I’ve learned that vibrant colors sell better and selling each piece (card case and pen) separately results in better sales. The addition of a frame to my card case surface designs provides a finished look to the piece.
So there you have it. A “then” and “now” comparison of my functional art work. Looking at my early work gives me a chuckle. It is also a humble reminder of where I started and how much I’ve improved.