Mary Kent, a jewellery designer also known as Nemea Designs, shares her thoughts on a heap of questions this week...
1 -Your name: Mary Kent
2 -Your shop name and address: http://www.nemeadesigns.co.uk/ and http://www.etsy.com/shop/nemeadesigns
3 -Describe your artistic style in three words: Bold, colourful, sparkly.
4 -When did you first start jewellery making, and how did you get started?
I first started making jewellery about six years ago. I have always been interested in jewellery and I have a good collection of costume jewellery, earrings being a weakness of mine. A long time ago I was inspired by Janet Coles and her wonderful bead catalogues to look into jewellery making as a possible hobby. I went as far as sketching a few pieces using her beads but I never followed it up. Fast forward a few years and I started thinking about it again. This time the Internet opened up a whole new world of suppliers and forums full of like minded people. I took the plunge!
5 -What do you love most about your craft?
The fact that I make people happy. Customers have often said to me that people stop them to ask them about their jewellery. What I like is not so much that others admire my work but that the people who wear them feel special because of the attention.
I also get to play with wonderful Artisan glass beads!
6 -If you could take a class with any artist (in your field or otherwise) who would you choose and why?
One day I would like to take lessons in lampworking. As much as I love glass, I suspect I may not be a natural talent. I just hope to get a deeper understanding of the process.
7 -Do you have a favourite piece of your work that you can share with us?
There are two pieces that I love. The first is called Lilacs and it was a commission piece. The glass beads by Isabelle Anderson are dreamy but I also love the clear colour of the amethyst. This piece is owned by a friend of mine so I get a chance to see it worn .
The second piece is a recent creation. I made it the day before my son’s A level results came out. I was getting rather stressed so I opened my bead box and these beads which had been lurking there for years decided that they wanted to play. I don’t often mix sets by different artists but these rondelles by Isabelle Anderson were a match made in heaven with Laura Sparling’s beads (at least I think they are Laura’s!) So there you have it: Imperial
8 -Where do you find your inspiration?
This is such a hard question. I am inspired by many things from Music to Literature to Fashion. I also let the beads do the talking. They know exactly how they want to be made up!
9 -What’s your favourite technique within your medium?
I don’t use elaborate techniques in my work as the beads are strung (the challenge comes in the design of the piece). I must admit I love wired loops as I’m incapable of making plain loops; they never turn out right. I also enjoy working with Chinese knots when I am using leather or suede.
10- Where do you create your work?
Anywhere there is space! At the moment it is on a desk in the study but I have also worked with a tray on my lap.
11 -Do you have a favourite colour scheme or range when you’re creating pieces?
At the moment I’m interested in the use of colour as a solid block. I like to see glass beads “disappear” into similar coloured gemstones with only a few crystals scattered around to catch the eye and make the viewer aware that there are different materials at work.
12 - Can you give us a quotation/lyric/piece of advice that sums up your approach to life and your craft?
“Nothing better than Love and Service” by the Red Hot Chili Peppers
13 - The most serious question of all: if you could meet any fictional character, from TV film or literature, who would it be and why?
I’d be terrified but it would have to be Oscar Wilde. I would just hide in a corner and just listen to the man!
14 -Finally, what are your plans or hopes for your work in the future?
All I can wish for at the moment is to have some free time to bead. I hope that I can continue to improve my skills and to keep making my customers happy.
Thanks Mary - another great read for all us nosy people!
Don't forget to check back Wednesday the 19th for the next interrogation...