Last week I began the daring adventure of wrapping a beautiful ocean lampwork bead made by Molly Cooley and this week I finished it up. It has been a rewarding process overall and I am glad I took on the challenge. I realize it may not seem like a big deal in the scope of life to wrap a bead, but it is more of what is going on inside me that is the big deal. Being brave enough to take on fear of any kind is a big deal whether you are running into a burning building to save people or asking a friend for help. It is easy to compare your seemingly minuscule feats to others larger than life heroics, but comparison is never a good idea. We are all different with different sets of life experiences that turn us into the person we are. We each have a different set of struggles that won’t look anything like the person next to us. For me is it so easy to beat myself up over my struggles because I know of others that have harder things to deal with, but that is a wrong and hurtful attitude for me to have. I constantly need to remind myself that my value isn’t dependent upon my successes or failures, but something outside myself entirely…the value God placed in me when He created me. When I am able to remember this and operate out of that frame of mind I find myself much more willing to be brave and try new things.
In making jewelry I find many opportunities to be brave and try new things, but there is also the temptation to compare. If I start looking at others work in comparison to mine I fall into a critical place either of other’s work or my own and that judgement has never led me to a good place. Instead I have found that I excel when I focus on my own journey and progress without thinking abut how I measure up or fall short. Now this doesn’t mean I don’t challenge myself to grow…if anything I fall on the side of trying to grow too much and not being content with the progress I make. We all must challenge ourselves but comparisons don’t usually lead us to a place of growth…just hurt or pride depending upon where you fall in comparison. Because of this I try to focus on my journey, run my race, and be brave where I can.
Last week when I decided I was ready to be brave and wrap my first ocean lampwork bead I had an idea in my mind, but I was unsure of how to bring it about. I wanted to use woven wire to mimic the rolling flow of ocean waves to match the bead. I am not good at drawing out ideas so I just make things and see how they turn out. I wove a length of wire and swirled it to match what I thought I wanted, but the idea morphed until I had a frame for the bead.
Here is a picture of the frame I created to mimic the waves…
This piece stretched my skills in constructing a pendant because the frame wasn’t attached anywhere and I wanted it to look like a natural part of the piece instead of an afterthought. I did run into a couple of problems including some wires that snapped while I was trying to anchor the piece, but I was able to recover and create a beautiful piece.
Here are some picture of my finished piece…
When I finished the piece I was worried that I might have covered the beautiful bead too much, but then I realized that it was exactly how I wanted it to be. The overall effect is like a portal looking our into the ocean at night which I really like. It reminds me of standing on the balcony at night looking out into the ocean through moonlight in Destin, Florida. Remembering that creates such joy and rest in my mind and I am glad I was able to capture a piece of that in this necklace. I don’t normally name my pieces but this one seemed to supply its own…Portal Into the Night.
It’s a bit of an odd thing for me when my creativity takes me places I wasn’t trying to go. I like to plan and know where I am heading in general, but being creative with wire gives me a safe place to explore the unknown and delight in the journey as well as the destination. I am grateful that I get to do something that I really enjoy and grow along the way.
It is about time to wrap up this post, but before I do I wanted to share some pictures of a couple of the necklaces that I oxidized and my husband photographed this week.
Here are the pictures…
I still have two more oxidized pendants from Week #4 to share and I plan to do that next week along with my final project for this challenge. I hope that you have a great week and will be able to find some way to be brave in your journey this week!