Thursday, May 10, 2012

The look? (Lisa Kewish)

My metalsmithing instructor once said to me, “You are so amazingly creative. It oozes from you. You could shoot off in 500 different directions and be successful at any of them.

That is quite the compliment from a master jewelry artist. However…

I’ve been watching “Fashion Star” and while I’m not all that about the mentors – watching the evolution of up-and-coming fashion designers and the buyers, has me fascinated. The buyers are reps from H&M, Macy’s and Saks Fifth Avenue. I take mental notes every time they give advice.

The main advice – “Be able to reach multi-levels of buyers. Design clothing for any occasion and be able to dress any body.” And always, “You want us to be able to RECOGNIZE your work.”

Multi buyers and bodies…any occasion…RECOGNIZABLE.

Being recognizable and shooting off in 500 directions creates a battle in my head.

My art tends to have an“organic” look. Whereas, Josh’s work is clean and precise – I tend to just allow things to flow out side the lines, allow things to melt where I don’t think I want meltage (my own technical word) and let colors and flow run at will. I allow the piece of jewelry be art. We use the line "Bold and Unique" because it gives us a lot of room to create.

I can hear one former classmate clearly, “Lisa, you are still searching for your voice…”

Haunts me…like the “500 different directions” haunts me.

My art is not always going to "recognizable."

My voice is not just one note.
Perhaps…many notes. Some discordant, some pitchy, some right on and loud…and other notes subtle and simple.

Isn’t an artist supposed to evolve? Isn’t an artist someone who has a vision and doesn’t sleep or eat until the vision is in her hand and she is pleased with the final result? Or if not pleased, then back to the studio to learn a little more about how to make things work?

I find myself rebelling against that. But then I do that in my personal life too…just when you may think you have me figured out, I will go and do something completely "unrecognizable." ("What? I thought you just liked to sit around and have deep discussions about the meaning of life...and there you are dancing wildly in the streets...")

Flighty? No. Choosing to live a full life and explore all my 500 directions? Yes.


I say: Live your Self fully and have fun with all your 500 directions. I think that is truer than being a recognizable “one direction.”

Living life in multi-dimensions. Outside of the box. In other realms. Coloring trees purple and cats bright green.

It's way fun!

If YOU see a recognizable "look" to my work, please, let me know what you see (other than a lot of ovals!!!)



  1. dear lisa, from someone with many directions....what do i see that tells me this is lisa's work? freedom - i feel freedom in all of them, the lines lead me to feel this way. i see light that rises from a deep metallic place that is not familiar to me. playfulness. craftswomanship. a feminine soul that has many directions to express this wonder and love of these materials. and the one "on top" just blows my mind. like it is sculpture, like it belongs on a wall, and yet the feminine says, no, it is enough to pin on my, an understated power in this beauty is what i feel..............joyful creativity.

    1. Beautiful Barbara!
      Thank you so much for your insight to my work.

      The "love of the materials"... yessss.

  2. beautiful, Lisa!! wow! I especially love the display with multiple necklaces.... gorgeous!

    1. Ah...Suzy, thank you.
      Thank you very much! xoxoxo

  3. From daydreams to fruition...Gorgeous!

  4. "Bloomdiggity"

    Missed you last Saturday. :( Hope you are feeling better. :)

    ...and thank you for the "gorgeous"!

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  9. Organic describes . . . you, even more than your work. Your mind. Your creative process. Your fingers, smile, laugh and the way your energy flies, then stops still like a dragonfly. Through your organic fingers, eyes, mind and spirit, creations happen. As the new piece flows out your fingers, it is filtered through a bend in your thoughts, a prism in your eye, a dimensional shift in the movement of your fingers, a new note on your heartstring. So each piece is bound to be unique. Instead of developing a single story in your work, you create multiple series of art. Each series tells a story that may be progressive or an entire picture with multiple pieces. May you take a long long time to create the recognizable unit of your work. May it not be one world, but a universe. Not one petal, but a bouquet. Not a movement, but a symphony. And may those who love you know your work because you are in it.