Welcome back for Talented Tuesday!! Today we are glad to feature Amanda of Riverside Jewelry. I met Amanda via Twitter and quickly became a fan of her work. I secretly hope for her metalsmithing skills. 🙂
Here is one of my favorite pieces in her collection and with Mother’s Day around the corner, consider it a hint. 😉
Let’s get to know Amanda…..
1) Tell us about yourself – name, location, any personal tidbits
My name is Amanda, and I live in Central Maine. I’m married to a wonderful man, and live in a huge old farmhouse with my Husband, Mother, Mother in law, and Sister. We have 5 dogs that we love very much and spoil absolutely rotten!
2) When you are not creating items, what do you do for fun?
I like to read when I get a few minutes- I love the Twilight series! (Yes, I’m one of THOSE) We love to garden, barbecue, go camping, and entertain friends!
3) When did you first recognize/accept that you were an artist?
I considered myself a hobbyist for a long time. I was, really. I started beadworking in front of the TV in the evenings. I really did love it, though. It wasn’t long after I had taken Metalsmithing classes and set up a home studio that I started to realize what an unbelievable artistic outlet it was. I considered myself artistic,
just not necessarily an artist. It wasn’t until I caught myself dreaming about new ideas, never leaving the house without a sketchbook, and coming up with and executing some fantastic new designs, that I accepted what I was becoming!
4) Describe your creative process – idea first or material first?
Usually I have an idea first, but with that idea comes the materials. I’ll know once I sketch a design, exactly what metals and which stone will be used in the construction of the piece. I have some gorgeous stones that I’ve been in love with since the day I got them, but I haven’t wanted to use them yet. I don’t want to use a stone just to use it- it feels like I’m wasting it that way. It has to BELONG to the design it ends up in!
5) Describe a typical day for yourself in your studio?
A typical day in the studio starts around 11:00AM. First I have to drink my coffee, go over the orders I have to get out the next day, and get my creative juices flowing. I always try to get my custom orders out first, but if it’s been a busy week and I haven’t had a chance to sit and make something I WANT to make, I’ll take a stand for my own creative needs and spend the day working on something I WANT to work on! Generally the artsy part of my day is in the late afternoon and into the evening, though!
6) Besides Etsy, how do you promote your work?
I have 2 etsy sites, http://Riversidejewelry.etsy.com, and http://riversidesupplies.etsy.com. I do a lot of other internet promoting too! I also have my personal website, http://www.riversidejewelrydesigns.com, my Facebook RJD Fan Group at http://tinyurl.com/cdpt5t, my blog at http://riversidejewelrydesigns.blogspot.com, and my twitter username is RJDesigns! I also do a lot of local art fairs, and Home Jewelry Parties!
7) Any advice for other artisans?
Yes, be as creative in your marketing as you are at your craft! When starting businesses, a lot of Artisans like myself, don’t have a Marketing budget at all! Go online, and spread your name all over the internet! I have been interviewed for a local news segment, been in both of my local papers, and have now been featured in a blog- all from online networking! Join any community arts organizations you can find- and get to know people in your community!
In case, you are truly feeling generous, you can also pick me up this:
Okay, now hurry up as I don’t want all of you fighting over my gifts. 🙂