Artfire Artisan Spotlight: Shelly Burton, Thimbleandstone
Posted by pauljvguillaume on 08/10/2011 at 16:29:43
Where do you live and what is it like?
The beautiful state of Vermont is where I grew up. Always having been artistic, I would draw and paint, then my grandmother taught me how to knit, and both she and my mother taught me to crochet. The jewelry work came later, when I was a teen. I would get frustrated that I couldn't find what I wanted and in a price range I could afford, so I began making my own jewelry.
As a young woman, I traveled west to Colorado and visited New Mexico and Arizona. I also traveled to Europe, when my husband at that time, was in the Army. I now live in Kentucky, about 1 hour northeast of Louisville. Where I am now is much like the rural life I lived in Vermont. There are no pizza deliveries that will come this far, I was on dial-up for my computer because there are no cable or telephone DSL available here. I now have a satellite service! It's rural and rustic and clean and I love it!!! My husband and I live about 1-2 hours away from the Appalachian Mountain range, very much like the mountains in the Green Mountain state of Vermont.
When did you learn your medium?
I have been designing and making jewelry now for about 30 years, that I would consider "good quality" and not a teenager trying to make things work! I've been crocheting for almost 40 years, and about the same with knitting. I have a few knit items in my studio, and will have more as cool weather approaches.
How did you come to find a home on ArtFire?
I love to crochet and love to make jewelry and love working with seed beads, so what better way than to make crocheted, seed bead jewelry! The hands and eyes are still working and creativity flowing like crazy, so my studio here features mostly new items made within the past year.
After many years of gift giving and even selling a few pieces, my daughters, son-in-laws and sisters encouraged me to "put it out for the world to see". By chance, I came across ArtFire while searching the web. I really like the way our studios are set up and the ease of adding our individual pieces. Makes for longer crafting time when I don' have to spend hours at the computer!
What is the best piece of advice you can give other artists?
One thing I have always been is full of creativity. If there is one piece of advice I could give other artists, it is this, it is never too late or too early to be brave and let others see your work. We can see every little flaw and tell ourselves "no one would ever buy this", but trust me, you would be wrong! Regardless of how many of us are out here, "selling our wares", so to speak, it is never a bad time to step out and join us!
What are your goals with your ArtFire studio?
My hope for my ArtFire Studio is that others see my creations and can appreciate the work that has gone into them. (And of course, buy them!). In the meantime, I will keep adding new items as I finish them and as is with all my creations on here, they are one of a kind. I might occasionally make something in the same style, but different color, yet I can tell you, that won't be often. I have found my greatest work and greatest joy is "birthing" that idea I have in my head, to real life! Those special details and color play are not intended to be duplicated, like any artist knows, it is the originality that sparks the intrigue!