About The Artist
Warren Feld, Jewelry Designer
 
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Warren Feld, Jewelry Artist

 

My Personal Style

My personal style centers on a few key elements. Ilike to...

- Mix colors in unexpected ways, particularly colors you would not ordinarily assume would complement one another

- Use a lot of what are called "grays", such as black diamond, montana blue, colorado topaz, alexandrite, and other "simultaneity effects"

- Combine both bead weaving, bead stringing, and wire-working techniques within the same piece.

- Modify traditional weaving and stringing techniques

- Define and play with forms and themes, and thresholds, frames and transititions from one form to the next

- Have pieces that emphasize the sensual and sexual

- Create unusual, unexpected placement of shapes, such as using curved tubes where you might expect a straight tube instead, or using a cube where you would expect a flat rondelle

- Add dimensionality, curvature, and interlocking forms, where I can, to make my pieces both fashionable and contemporary

- Add a sense of movement and move-ability, wherever possible, and likewise, anticipate the aesthetic and functional impacts and effects which come from movement when worn

- Push the limits of, and experiment with, the materials and techniques I am using

- Organize my pieces into Series I call "Collections." For each Collection, I study a particular culture or technique or design theory, and play with what I've learned. How can I adopt what I've learned to my individual style and approach? Each Collection, then, is a personal challenge of expression and expressiveness.

 

--- Warren Feld


The DESIGN Perspective
On Beading and Jewelry Making


The DESIGN PERSPECTIVE is very focused on teaching beaders and jewelry makers how to make choices. Choices about what materials to include, and not to include. Choices about strategies and techniques of construction. Choices about mechanics. Choices about aesthetics. Choices about how best to evoke emotions.

These choices must also reflect an understanding of the bead and its related components. How do all these pieces, in conjunction with stringing materials, assert their needs? Their needs for color, light and shadow. Their needs for durability, flexibility, drape, movement and wearability. Their needs for social or psychological or cultural or contextual appropriateness -- an appropriateness that has to do with satisfaction, beauty, fashion and style, as well as power and influence.

This DESIGN PERSPECTIVE contrasts with the more predominant Craft Approach, where the beader or jewelry maker merely follows a set of steps and ends up with something. Here, in this step-by-step approach, all the choices have been made for them.

And this DESIGN PERSPECTIVE also contrasts with another widespread approach to beading and jewelry making – the Art Tradition – which focuses on achieving ideals of beauty, whether the jewelry is worn or not. Here the beader or jewelry maker learns to apply art theories learned by painters and sculptors, and assumed to apply equally to beads and jewelry, as well.

The Craft Approach and the Art Tradition ignore too much of the functional essence of jewelry. Because of this, they often steer the beader and jewelry maker in the wrong directions. Making the wrong choices. Exercising the wrong judgments. Applying the wrong tradeoffs between aesthetics and functionality.

The focus of the DESIGN PERSPECTIVE is strategic thinking. At the core of this thinking are a series of design principles and their skillful applications. These principles go beyond a set of techniques. These principles and the strategies for applying them provide the beader and jewelry maker with some clarity in a muddled world.

The belief here is that there are many different kinds of information that must come together and be applied. It is impossible to clearly learn and integrate this information all at once. When learned haphazardly or randomly, as most people do, it becomes problematic. It becomes more difficult or too confusing to successfully bring to bear all these kinds of things the beader or jewelry maker needs to know when designing and constructing a piece of jewelry in the moment. Thus, the beader and jewelry maker best learn all this related yet disparate information in a developmental order, based on some coherent grammer or set of rules of design. By learning within this organized structure and informational hierarchy, the jewelry artist best sees how everything interrelates and comes together. This is the DESIGN PERSPECTIVE.

So, we begin with a Core set of skills and concepts, and how these are interrelated and applied. Then we move on to a Second Set of skills and concepts, their interrelationships and applications, and identifying how they are related to the Core. And onward again to a Third Set of skills and concepts, their interrelationships and applications and relationship to the Second Set and the Core, and so forth.

In the DESIGN PERSPECTIVE, “Jewelry” is understood as Art, but is only Art as it is worn. It is not considered Art when sitting on a mannequin or easel. Because of this, the principles learned through Craft or Art are important, but not sufficient for learning good jewelry design and fashioning good jewelry.

Learning good jewelry design creates its own challenges. All jewelry functions in a 3-dimensional space, particularly sensitive to position, volume and scale. Jewelry must stand on its own as an object of art. But it must also exist as an object of art which interacts with people (and a person’s body), movement, personality, and quirks of the wearer, and of the viewer, as well as the environment and context. Jewelry serves many purposes, some aesthetic, some functional, some social and cultural, some psychological.

The focus of the DESIGN PERSPECTIVE is on the parts. How do you choose them? How should they be used, and not be used? How do you assemble them and combine them in such a way that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts? How do you create and build in support systems within your jewelry to enable that greater movement, more flexibility, better draping, longer durability? How do you best use all these parts, making them resonate and evoking that emotional response from your audience to your style, vision and creative hand that you so desire?

The beader and jewelry maker are seen as multi-functional professionals, similar to an architect who builds houses and an engineer who builds bridges. In all these cases, the professional must bring a lot of very different kinds of skills and abilities to bear, when constructing, whether house or bridge or jewelry. The professional has to be able to manage artistic design, functionality, and the interaction of the object with the person and that person’s environment.


Read: ABOUT GOOD JEWELRY DESIGN: Principles of Composition

 



PROFESSIONAL PROFILE:


WARREN FELD
Jewelry Designer

Director, Center for Beadwork & Jewelry Arts and www.LearnToBead.net

For Warren Feld, Jewelry Designer, beading and jewelry making endeavors have been wonderful adventures. These adventures, over the past 25 years, have taken Warren from the basics of bead stringing and bead weaving, to wire working and silver smithing, and onward to more complex jewelry designs which build on the strengths of a full range of technical skills and experiences.

He, along with his partner James Alfard Jones, opened a small bead shop in downtown Nashville, Tennessee, about 20 years ago, and called it Land of Odds. Over time, Land of Odds evolved from a bricks and mortar store into a successful internet business – www.landofodds.com . In the late 1990s, James and Warren opened up another bricks and mortar bead store – Be Dazzled Beads – in a trendy neighborhood of Nashville called Berry Hill. Together both businesses supply beaders and jewelry artists with all the supplies and parts they need to make beautiful pieces of wearable art.



In 2000, Warren founded The Center For Beadwork & Jewelry Arts (CBJA) – www.landofodds.com/beadschool . CBJA is an educational program, associated with Be Dazzled Beads in Nashville, for beaders and jewelry makers. The program approaches education from a Design Perspective. There is a strong focus here on skills development. There are requirements for sequencing the student's classes; that is, taking classes in a developmental order. There is a major emphasis on teaching how to make better choices when selecting beads, other parts and stringing materials, and how to bring these altogether into a beautiful, yet functional piece of jewelry.

With Warren’s direction, CBJA in conjunction with Land of Odds, sponsors three international contests:
The Ugly Necklace Contest – A Jewelry Design Competition with a Twist!
All Dolled Up: Beaded Art Doll Competition
The Illustrative Beader: Beaded Tapestry Competition
Upcoming programs of CBJA: www.LearnToBead.net, a work now in progress, is our recent effort to extend our CBJA philosphy and successes to a broader audience on-line Jewelry Design Camp is another planned program, offering intensive 1-week long thematic sessions on some aspect of jewelry design theory and application.

Warren’s commitment and concern for the "teaching of beadwork" resulted from watching and talking, over the years, with customers in the shop, who had taken classes elsewhere, or tried to teach themselves from books. These beaders were not buying parts or using parts to their best advantage. It was obvious that many people had taken classes, but that they weren't necessarily learning something -- at least not learning something that would stick with them, and that they could comfortably apply in other situations. They were memorizing steps, rather than integrating organized processes of thinking, thus designing.



Most classes and books about beading or jewelry making typically come out of the Craft Perspective, where you learn a set of steps and end up with a particular project. But when you leave that class, you haven’t learned how to apply those steps to any other situation, and you probably forget how to do the project. At the shop, Warren and his staff do a lot of re-teaching -- putting things learned into a broader context, showing alternative ways of achieving the same ends, explaining how the choice of materials used in a project will affect how it’s done, and how durable it will be over time.

Warren leads a group of 12 instructors at CBJA. He teaches many of the bead-stringing, jewelry design as well as business-oriented courses in the CBJA curriculum. He works with people just getting started with beading and jewelry making, as well as with the program’s advanced bead study groups. These groups meet bi-weekly to learn, try out and experiment with beading techniques, sometimes exploring issues cross-culturally, and othertimes, examining the works of particular bead- or jewelry artists over the course of their design careers.




JEWELRY DESIGN SPECIALTIES:
Bead Weaving
Bead Stringing
Design Theory
Business of Craft
Contemporizing Traditional Jewelry
Vintage Revival Styles
Art vs. Craft Jewelry Design Applications


WARREN SELECTED AS FINALIST , 4th place, for "Canyon Sunrise", SWAROVSKI’s Be Naturally Inspired Design Contest 2008

 


" Little Tapestries/Ghindia" — was juried into the book SHOWCASE 500 BEADED JEWELRY, Lark Publications. August 2012, listed on Amazon.com at http://amzn.to/z6tZH2 .

 


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Instructor, CraftArtEdu.com


CraftArtEdu is a truly unique
online craft and fine art e-learning community

Tutorials:
PRICING AND SELLING YOUR JEWELRY

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS...

PEARL KNOTTING WARREN'S WAY

TUXEDO PARK BRACELET

 

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Member, Nashville Fashion Group


"The Ugly Necklace Contest," in The Beader's Guide To Jewelry Design, Margie Deeb, 2014

"Gwynian Ropes Bracelet", Perlen Posie, No. 21, 2014.

 


All jewelry, artworks, images, designs, copy, Copyright 2008 Warren Feld.
All rights reserved. Warren Feld Studio

Beads and Jewelry Making Supplies - Land of Odds Phone: 615/292-0610.          
Email: warren@warrenfeldjewelry.com
BLOG: blog.landofodds.com