Artist Profile: Gini Mitchell

Artist Profile: Gini Mitchell

Non-Profit: Reef.org

How did you get started in jewelry making?

In the early ‘80s, I started gluing plastic and metal found items from the garage into jewelry. Then a friend and I started exploring beading.  She gave up and I kept going, becoming a self-taught silversmith and moving into chainmail and cutting rings.  I still wear my first ring, a peach moonstone in sterling silver.

If you had to pick a favorite item you’ve made?

Favorite item made: King’s mail necklace

A heavy King’s mail necklace with handmade cones. (Photo from Instagram)

What is the most challenging part of jewelry making?

Marketing is a challenge.  I don’t have a storefront and my Etsy store was frustrating.  I’d like to sell enough to sustain my habit. 

How would you describe your signature style?

Bold, unique, unexpected, and whimsical

What inspires you?

Water, anything blue or green will get my attention.

Tell me about your non-profit.

From the website, “Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF) is an international marine conservation organization that implements hands-on programs to involve local communities in conservation-focused activities. REEF was founded in 1990 and is based in Key Largo, Florida, its mission is to protect biodiversity and ocean life by actively engaging and inspiring the public through citizen science, education, and partnerships with the scientific community.”

Artist Profile: Victor Velez

Artist Profile: Victor Velez

Non-profit: Ronald McDonald House Charities Greater Cincinnati

Tell me about your artistic journey. 

Since age nine, I have been a musician, percussionist, mainly playing congas. Playing mostly “Salsa and Latin jazz.” I joined my first band at sixteen.  

In the late ’70s, I became interested in photography and purchased a camera. During that time, I met a woman (nun) at my church. She was a journalist for a newspaper in Brooklyn, New York called “The Tablet.” I asked her if she needed someone to cover events when she had conflicts, and within a few months, I was photographing and writing articles for the publication.

In the early ’90s, I became interested in writing poetry. Both photography and poetry helped me see my world. I saw my surrounding metaphorically, like looking into a camera viewfinder.

Poetry helped me put into words what I saw. Observing the world through all the senses helped me imagine stories and explore the “what if” of storytelling. 

Also, in the ‘90s, I relocated to Cincinnati, Ohio, for my job at McAlpin’s and published my first book in 2003, “A Quest for Answers.” Since 2003, I’ve published ten books.

You’re a writer, poet, photographer, and musician.  Which art form are you focusing on right now?

Writing is my current passion.  My latest novel, “The Triduum of All Hallows,” is available on Amazon, and I’m working on a script for the stage and will adapt that to a short fiction soon.  At the end of each year, I pick 4 or 5 projects from the back burner to focus on going forward.

Tell me about your chosen non-profit.

Ronald McDonald House Charities Greater Cincinnati is an excellent resource for families with critically ill children.  They can accommodate 177 families every night, including parents, children receiving outpatient treatment, siblings, and other family members.

THEGRAYIST.com is a collective of makers, elevating their craft and doing good. Each maker designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their sales through this channel. As the umbrella organization, THEGRAYIST.com also designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their profits. Visit our website, THEGRAYIST.com to learn more or contact us at Hello@thegrayist.com. 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Each maker designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their sales through this channel. As the umbrella organization, THEGRAYIST.com also designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their profits. Visit our website, THEGRAYIST.com to learn more or contact us at . 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Each maker designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their sales through this channel. As the umbrella organization, THEGRAYIST.com also designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their profits. Visit our website, THEGRAYIST.com to learn more or contact us at. 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Artist Profile: Liz Hoskinson

Artist Profile: Liz Hoskinson

Non-Profit: Surfers Against Sewage

Instagram: @coastalsilversmith

How did you get started in jewelry making?

As a ceramicist, I was always looking at shapes and forms in 3 dimensions.  A friend invited me along to a silver casting class and I started casting on my kitchen table with a DIY shop blow torch, delft clay and some pyritised ammonite fossils found on the beach.  From there, on to YouTube videos and Lucy Walker Jewelry Metalsmith Academy.

If you had to pick a favorite item you’ve made?

It’s the next piece! Once I’ve created something, I’m already looking ahead to the next project. The challenge of figuring out how to make an idea come to life is what is what keeps me coming back to the bench. I must admit to a weakness for rings and struggle to let them go!

What’s the best thing about making jewelry?

Opening the mold after a casting and seeing the result.  Sometimes it’s great and sometimes it results in recasting but it’s always the best part: like the anticipation of a prize.

What is the most challenging part of jewelry making?

Photographing the finished pieces for social media. It is really hard to do justice to some of the stones and textures.

Liz H Giveaway ammonite web

What is your design process and how would you describe your signature style?

I don’t sketch things out in advance but work directly in 3d. I do keep a sketchbook of pieces I’m working on, as well as a photographic record as a diary of materials, dimensions, what worked better, etc. and find this really helpful.  My signature style is hard to define as it’s constantly evolving.  Combining elements from ceramics and photography, incorporating nature and coastal elements is a recurring theme.  I like statement pieces. If I am setting a stone, I tend to keep the setting to a minimal to highlight the stone.  If it’s a cast piece, then the texture is the star.

Tell me about your non-profit.

Surfers Against Sewage is non-profit that started out by providing information about pollution conditions at beaches.  Living near the beach, it’s a big part of my relaxation and down time. 

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THEGRAYIST.com is a collective of makers, elevating their craft and doing good. Each maker designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their sales through this channel. As the umbrella organization, THEGRAYIST.com also designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their profits. The grayist the grayist community the grayist marketplace the grayist featured artist the grayist featured item the grayist auctions the grayist give back the grayist gallery because art isn’t black or white Makers for charity Artists for charity Art for charity Artisans for charity Shopping for good Shopping for charity Cause shopping Shopping donation Best Business Practices for Creatives Visual artist entrepreneurs Successful art businesses Successful art business practices Best art business practices Easy art business practices Art entrepreneurs Art entrepreneurs best practices Best business practices for art entrepreneurs Art business startup checklist Successful art business startup checklist Best art business startup checklist Easy art business startup checklist Starting an art business from home Starting a successful art business from home Successful visual artist Successful visual art entrepreneurs Best practices for visual art entrepreneurs Successful music artist Successful music entrepreneurs Successful music entrepreneurs best practices Best practices for music entrepreneurs Best practices for music business Starting a music business from home Starting a successful music business from home Joining a marketplace Marketplace for artist and creatives Marketplace for musicians Marketplace for crafters Marketplace for handmade products Marketplace for metalsmiths Marketplace for fiber artist Marketplace for photographers Marketplace for painters Marketplace for seamstresses Marketplace for quilters Marketplace for knitters Marketplace for fiber artist Marketplace for ceramicists Marketplace for sculptures Marketplace for mixologists Marketplace for bartenders Marketplace for woodworkers

artist profile: travis kerschner

artist profile: travis kerschner

Non-Profit: RAGS

Instagram: @wovenchains

How did you get started in your jewelry journey?

I’ve always been interested in gems and shiny things.  16 years ago, my wife started making her jewelry and I would go to farmers markets and table events to help build up the displays and support her as she grew to larger art shows.

One day, I bought some loose gems and started setting.  Earrings at first, and then progressing in complexity.  Four years later, I’ve become the primary maker.  A few times a year, we’ll collaborate on a piece, my pendant and her chain, etc. 

What’s your design process?

It’s not the traditional, mood board, pencil to paper design process.  Rendering doesn’t make sense with the limited time available for studio work.  We don’t necessarily think in lines, the way other artists might, creating a number pieces around a theme. 

When I have a new idea, it’s fully formed in my head and then reverse engineered into the steps required to make it. 

My favorite piece started as a concept ring (picture) standing high off the hand.  From there it evolved into a pendant and required the flower to hang away from the body, independent of the bird.  When worn, it stays perfectly suspended and is highly dimensional.

Tell me about the non-profit organization you support, RAGS. 

It’s an annual benefit for the Pierce County YWCA’s domestic violence programming.  It has been going on for 20 years and my wife and I have participated for the past 7.  It’s a 4-day event where regional jewelry makers, fiber artists and designers set up in the Fife Mercedes Benz showroom and donate 33-40% of their sales to the YWCA.  The program has raised over $1.5 million dollars since it started.

Describe your signature style.

Sculptural and organically created.  Our designs need to be seen and held to be fully appreciated.

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THEGRAYIST.com is a collective of makers, elevating their craft and doing good. Each maker designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their sales through this channel. As the umbrella organization, THEGRAYIST.com also designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their profits. The grayist the grayist community the grayist marketplace the grayist featured artist the grayist featured item the grayist auctions the grayist give back the grayist gallery because art isn’t black or white Makers for charity Artists for charity Art for charity Artisans for charity Shopping for good Shopping for charity Cause shopping Shopping donation Best Business Practices for Creatives Visual artist entrepreneurs Successful art businesses Successful art business practices Best art business practices Easy art business practices Art entrepreneurs Art entrepreneurs best practices Best business practices for art entrepreneurs Art business startup checklist Successful art business startup checklist Best art business startup checklist Easy art business startup checklist Starting an art business from home Starting a successful art business from home Successful visual artist Successful visual art entrepreneurs Best practices for visual art entrepreneurs Successful music artist Successful music entrepreneurs Successful music entrepreneurs best practices Best practices for music entrepreneurs Best practices for music business Starting a music business from home Starting a successful music business from home Joining a marketplace Marketplace for artist and creatives Marketplace for musicians Marketplace for crafters Marketplace for handmade products Marketplace for metalsmiths Marketplace for fiber artist Marketplace for photographers Marketplace for painters Marketplace for seamstresses Marketplace for quilters Marketplace for knitters Marketplace for fiber artist Marketplace for ceramicists Marketplace for sculptures Marketplace for mixologists Marketplace for bartenders Marketplace for woodworkers

July/Aug 2021 Artist Profile: Rinku Ghosh

July/Aug 2021 Artist Profile: Rinku Ghosh

Non-Profit: YMCA

Instagram: Cultural Gems Jewelry

What started your jewelry adventure? 

Creating functional art is a labor of love for me. I believe art and architecture are limitless and universal, whether it be a tastefully designed living space or a nice piece of wearable art.

Jewelry art is a practice that goes back to the Stone Ages, a universal form of self-expression embedded in all cultures. My journey of creating jewelry was inspired by this unity. 

My path to jewelry art was an unexpected but meaningful journey. My formative years were spent at Visva-Bharti University, earning Physics degrees in a unique place to nurture development in nature, art, science, and people. Then, I moved to London and studied Scientific Software Engineering at University of Greenwich and transitioned to healthcare computing.

Along the way, I cultivated an artistic sensibility through interior design projects. For the past several years, I have leveraged my background and artistic bent into a passion for jewelry making.

I am primarily self-taught, often identifying my inspirations through world travel, and have also enjoyed taking studio classes in New York City and at the Indiana University School of Fine Arts. I am currently a student of Lucy Walker Jewellery Academy.

What’s the best thing about making jewelry?

Through jewelry design, I am able to convey my inner visions and connect to people.

Temple of Spirit Earrings & Pendant by Rinku Gosh

What’s the most challenging thing about making jewelry?

Perfecting the techniques and learning the tools to give a shape to my unique piece of jewelry!

If you had to pick a favorite item you’ve made?

Temple of Spirit earrings and pendant set (pictured). I handcrafted these pendant and earrings inspired by the Giza Plateau of Egypt. The reflection of the Sun from the walls of these several thousand year old pyramids onto the surrounding barren desert landscape dotted with habitation is mind blowing. The pharaohs built these tombs for their eternal life. My jewelries are shaped like an inverse pyramid lifting the spirit up and out.

How would you describe your signature style?

Bringing cultures and art together.

Why did you pick YMCA as your non-profit?

It helps people of all strata of life to develop a healthier body and mind… truly inspirational Pillars of a healthy community!

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THEGRAYIST.com is a collective of makers, elevating their craft and doing good. Each maker designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their sales through this channel. As the umbrella organization, THEGRAYIST.com also designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their profits. The grayist the grayist community the grayist marketplace the grayist featured artist the grayist featured item the grayist auctions the grayist give back the grayist gallery because art isn’t black or white Makers for charity Artists for charity Art for charity Artisans for charity Shopping for good Shopping for charity Cause shopping Shopping donation Best Business Practices for Creatives Visual artist entrepreneurs Successful art businesses Successful art business practices Best art business practices Easy art business practices Art entrepreneurs Art entrepreneurs best practices Best business practices for art entrepreneurs Art business startup checklist Successful art business startup checklist Best art business startup checklist Easy art business startup checklist Starting an art business from home Starting a successful art business from home Successful visual artist Successful visual art entrepreneurs Best practices for visual art entrepreneurs Successful music artist Successful music entrepreneurs Successful music entrepreneurs best practices Best practices for music entrepreneurs Best practices for music business Starting a music business from home Starting a successful music business from home Joining a marketplace Marketplace for artist and creatives Marketplace for musicians Marketplace for crafters Marketplace for handmade products Marketplace for metalsmiths Marketplace for fiber artist Marketplace for photographers Marketplace for painters Marketplace for seamstresses Marketplace for quilters Marketplace for knitters Marketplace for fiber artist Marketplace for ceramicists Marketplace for sculptures Marketplace for mixologists Marketplace for bartenders Marketplace for woodworkers

July 2021 Featured Artist: Kris Geiger

July 2021 Featured Artist: Kris Geiger

Non-Profit: Veterans Yoga Project

Website:  krisgeiger.com

Instagram: jkrisgeiger

What started your jewelry adventure? 

Picture it – 1992, Monmouth Jewelers, a family-owned store in Alexandria, KY,  I worked there throughout college.  Even though my career was ultimately in advertising, jewelry was always in the back of my mind.  In 2010, my job moved me to NY and I started the part-time GIA Graduate Gemologist coursework.  After graduating, I took the repair courses in the Carlsbad and slowly started setting up my bench.

What’s the best thing about making jewelry?

It’s like being a kid with grown up toys.  Instead of playdough, paper, and scissors, it’s wire, pliers and sheet metal.  Plus the people you get to play with are amazing, imaginative, and fun.

What’s the most challenging thing about making jewelry?

Limited time and space!  My bench overwhelms the living room in our very small apartment. My husband’s patience with tiny metal bits, fire hazards, and cursing is remarkable. Time becomes even more precious because a good chunk is spent pulling out and putting away tools and materials.

If you had to pick a favorite item you’ve made?

A ring for my friend, Jessica (pictured).  We were on vacation in Dubai and she bought a rutilated quartz.  Quite large.  She had a photo of a ring she liked, and I made a prototype for her in bronze.  It was so big, I thought she should try it out before making it in precious metal.  She ended up loving it as is.  (Photo provided)

How would you describe your signature style?

Wearable with unexpected details.

Why did you pick Veterans Yoga Project as your non-profit?

Yoga has been proven to be an effective part of PTSD therapy and resilience. They offer free classes to veterans, first-responders and their families.

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THEGRAYIST.com is a collective of makers, elevating their craft and doing good. Each maker designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their sales through this channel. As the umbrella organization, THEGRAYIST.com also designates a non-profit to receive 5% of their profits. The grayist the grayist community the grayist marketplace the grayist featured artist the grayist featured item the grayist auctions the grayist give back the grayist gallery because art isn’t black or white Makers for charity Artists for charity Art for charity Artisans for charity Shopping for good Shopping for charity Cause shopping Shopping donation Best Business Practices for Creatives Visual artist entrepreneurs Successful art businesses Successful art business practices Best art business practices Easy art business practices Art entrepreneurs Art entrepreneurs best practices Best business practices for art entrepreneurs Art business startup checklist Successful art business startup checklist Best art business startup checklist Easy art business startup checklist Starting an art business from home Starting a successful art business from home Successful visual artist Successful visual art entrepreneurs Best practices for visual art entrepreneurs Successful music artist Successful music entrepreneurs Successful music entrepreneurs best practices Best practices for music entrepreneurs Best practices for music business Starting a music business from home Starting a successful music business from home Joining a marketplace Marketplace for artist and creatives Marketplace for musicians Marketplace for crafters Marketplace for handmade products Marketplace for metalsmiths Marketplace for fiber artist Marketplace for photographers Marketplace for painters Marketplace for seamstresses Marketplace for quilters Marketplace for knitters Marketplace for fiber artist Marketplace for ceramicists Marketplace for sculptures Marketplace for mixologists Marketplace for bartenders Marketplace for woodworkers