Sunday, October 31, 2010

Janet Jenkin interview

Janet Jenkin taught English as a second language to adults for many years, but always found that she needed a creative activity to balance the more theoretically based work. Moving to part-time educational writing a few years ago has given her more time to concentrate on developing her practical skills in lampwork and jewellery making, to the extent that she has been able to start a small business that she hopes will grow in the future.

She says she always loved jewellery making and glass objects in any form, so her attendance at a workshop run by Peter Minson as an introduction to lampwork seemed like the perfect blending of the 2 passions, and it's been a continuing love affair ever since. Janet has made jewellery with glass beads for more years than she would like to admit to, but has only been lamp-working and making her own beads since 2007. Serious exlploration of beading and bead-weaving using Japanese glass seed beads is another continuing journey that started only recently.

Janet is inspired by combinations. She loves combining different colours, techniques and materials in her lampwork. Her colours of choice are black and/or ivory, and/or silver as a foundation then builds on that with other colours. Her colour palettes vary and to avoid the trap of limiting her work to the colours she prefers, she will often challenge herslf to try working with particular combinations that she may not initially be comfortable with.

Lamp work with soft glass is her preferred technique at the moment, although she is starting to experiment with boroscilicate (hard) glass and her seed beading favourite is working with different sorts of ropes such as spiral, netted and Russian.

At the moment Janet is mainly selling her jewellery through word of mouth and her beads at the Bead Society of Victoria meetings, where she is teaching some basic classes for the Society members. She is excited about being part of the Festival of Glass, and being able to show her finished work to a whole new audience. She jopes that in the future she attains many more skills in a variety of lampwork and beading, and to be selling her creations online as well as face to face.

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