Tag Archives: jewelry

Like me. Really "like" me!

There will never come a time when I forget about Sally Field’s famous acceptance speech when she won her Academy Award.

You LIKE me! You REALLY LIKE me!

She was sweet and genuine, no matter that it was a little corny and borderline needy. Haven’t we all been there? OK, I’m laughing now. Some of you have not. But I have and these are the only eyes I have with which to view the world, so. I digress.

Nancy Lee Designs Facebook Banner

“Like” has come to mean a whole new thing. In the Facebook world getting a “like” means a friend or stranger is giving your thought, image, or business a virtual thumbs up. With 845 million or so active users*, explaining a “like” seem kind of pointless, because unless you are there, you probably aren’t gonna make it over  here, to my little homemade website with my slow-cooked jewelry and sculpture.
But talking about “like” is my sneaky little way to bring up the “like” subject and to ask you kindly to visit and “like” my page there.
Why did I do it? Facebook rules state that one may not change their business page name. And, because I would prefer to be known as an artist, rather than as a “business” or bricks and mortar building, I felt strongly compelled to create a whole new Facebook page as Nancy Lee Designs.  What I wish to accomplish with it is to spark quick dialog between you and other lovers of handmade things, say a little about me and what goes into my work as it is happening, see progress shots and photos of finished work straight from my camera phone. I will announce shows, talk about tips, tricks, and metalsmithing techniques for those of you who are interested.
All in an effort to continue to build a bridge to you, the person who has found your way here, and about whom I care. So, I do hope you “like” it. Really “LIKE” it! (that is now 5 times I have hotlinked “like” to my new page – SHAMELESS!)
As always, seeking ways to enhance lives and share beauty.
(Check out “Simple Care for Sparking Silver Jewelry“, my first note on my new page.

Ten Things Metalsmiths Love, Plus Two

I’d like to share this list of “10 things to make a metalsmith smile”, directly from the Lapidary Journal/Jewelry Artist Newsletter called “Flashcard,” written by the amazing and inspirational Helen Driggs. If you every make anything at all, you can be assured of a few trials and tribulations. There is celebration when things go right, and here are ten little causes for celebration, plus two of my own!
1. When the hammer hits exactly where you intended it to, with exactly the right amount of force. And it’s a brand new hammer, too.
2. The bezel really fits and you aren’t in denial.
3. You find a 2” x 6” sheet of 18-gauge silver you forgot you bought. (this actually happened to me in December!)
4. No firescale.
5. The ring fits the finger you made it for.
6. No scratches.
7. You put exactly the perfect size solder chip right where it needed to be.
8. The eagle eyed cat looks right at the 3mm faceted stone you just dropped on the floor until you pick it up.
9. The sawblade doesn’t break when you know it really should have.
10. The phone call that results when your best friend e-mails you a photo of the piece she just finished at exactly the same time you were e-mailing her a piece you just finished.dscf1814a1
11. Helen Driggs is Managing Editor of Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist Magazine, and an accomplished metalsmith, toolhound and teacher, and I’m a big fan. I love her Flashcard e-mails. I’ve made some of her projects (see bracelet image, right). Her is often the only newsletter I consistently read, word for word. I always learn something, and often get a smile just from Helen’s down-to-earth, soul-filling writing style.
12. Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist Magazine is the mother ship of Flashcard. It’s a hold-it-in-your-hands paper periodical full of tips, tricks, inspiration and techniques for lapidarists and jewelry artists of all skill levels. Metalsmiths and rockhounds covet issues the way some covet the beautifully photographed and written National Geographic magazines. In particular, the January 2010 issue contains so much good stuff that my issue is already dog-eared, bent up, underlined with ink multiple times and highlighted for good measure. I’ve thought of placing it on my forehead before retiring in the hopes of awakening the next morning, imbued by osmotic effect with all the wonderments of knowledge contained in the ink.
It’s a great day when a metalsmith can appreciate any one of these ten + two things. What makes YOU smile?
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Nancy Lee’s Follow Up from Creative Arts Roundtable

Last post was in regards to the “Creative Arts Roundtable” at Business Ownership Initiative (BOI) on August 24 -  a hit! The setup was with five local artists (the fifth, D. DelReverda-Jennings, was added after my last post) and an attorney specializing in helping artists with any/all legal issues related to their business. The amazing Tricia Guagliardo came up with the concept of having a program targeted towards artists, a first at BOI, and assembled the panel. The room was packed and fairly vibrating with an intangible goodness that evening, completely filled with enthusiastic artists and art enthusiasts. (Including, interestingly, Susan Gilmer, who is the process of writing about my story for a future BOI newsletter.)

Butterfly Tryptic by Rachel Steely
Butterfly Tryptic by Rachel Steely

In alphabetical order by last name, I learned a little more about what the panelists do and what drives them, what it takes to succeed in the business of art. Eventually I realized that even though my name falls in the middle of the alphabet, I was destined to go last – right after the attorney with the impressive credentials. No sense holding myself small, I told myself. So my words came from my heart with the hope they would land where they needed to.
My bit explained my early love of art, then metal, and how a tree falling on my studio and the loss of my job in construction management led me last year to my true calling – making jewelry and objects. And then a little bit about Social Media – at which point I plugged social media icon Kyle Lacy. My friend and media designer Stephen James happened to be in the room,  so I plugged him too and when he got up & spoke for a moment, the group asked what he did. He received a big round of applause for eloquently saying that he supported his talented wife, Rachel Steely James, so she could do her art.
Afterwards, a class member approached me and told me he, too, lost his job last year and was pursuing his former part-time art, and that my words resonated with him. Helped him see that there were others in the same boat, and we’re floating on the same water. A couple days ago, Tricia was kind enough to e-mail the class evaluations and I was overwhelmed by the positive comments given to the panel, and the encouragement to forge ahead that was resonated with the participants. This is something I’m certain will become a part of BOI’s offerings in the future.nsilogofinal
Maybe even better is the chance for people to come together in this difficult and wonderful time to let each other know the good that is there for us to find, when we take a minute to look.

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