About this blog--As a recent graduate and currently in a one-year residency the question of what’s next and how to get there is always on my mind. For this blog I will be interviewing artists who have taken varying paths and pursued different careers in or out of the arts to see what they are doing now and the steps they took to get there.

Special Note--I want this to be a way to share how we are all trying to figure out the paths to what’s next and where to go, not answers or things to do, but a look into how others are making it and what has helped along the way. Please let me know if you have any suggestions for questions to ask or artists to interview.

About me--First time blogger, long time internet user. My name is Melissa Walter. In 2005 I received a BFA in Metal Design from East Carolina University. I was introduced to Metal Design in college, loved it, and chose metals as what I would pursue a degree in. Since high school I knew I would go to college seeking a degree in art, but never thought much about what would happen after college-let’s be honest, who does. Although, occasionally I would develop a “plan” to tell others who were constantly asking the question “what’s next?”

I finished undergrad in December of 2005, from there I continued my drive-thru coffee shop job, did a short stint of babysitting/nannying, and worked for six months at a bench jewelers/repair shop. After that time I realized two and a half things I did not want to do for the rest of my life—nannying, repair work, and drive-thru coffee shop (I could do a regular coffee shop again).

Connect, steel, handmade abaca paper, thread, 6.5 x 7 x 11”, 2011.

During this time I began looking for a full-time job. Because I had great recommendations from some friends who knew the owner of a communications billing company (aka-knew some people), I was able to get a job in the administration/accounting department of a communications billing company in Greenville, North Carolina. This really was a great job, with a wonderful boss, and co-workers. Unfortunately, during these two and a half years I wasn’t able to afford to have a studio to work in nor did a full-time job leave much energy for studio work. This time was valuable in many ways, one of them being that I was able to again realize something that I did not want to do for the rest of my life and through that realization applied to graduate school. In 2008 I began the MFA program in Jewelry and Metals at the University of Georgia. I approached graduate school differently than undergrad in my making and also in how I used my time. I had an assistantship, but no additional employment and took opportunities as they came such as going to Penland and studying abroad in Italy. Both of which I wouldn’t have been able to spend the money or time away from work to do during undergrad.

Crochet Brooch 04, steel, handmade abaca paper, thread, 3 x 2.5 x 1", 2011.

I made it through grad school finishing in May of 2011, spent some time on applications (which are possibly harder and worse than grad school) and was awarded a one-year artist residency at the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, which began in September of 2011 and comes to a close at the end of August of 2012. I have spent my time in Houston in an amazing studio, teaching adjunct Art Appreciation at Houston Community College, doing a little dog-walking, a couple months at a retail cleaning company, and will finish up my residency spending the summer in the studio, working at a local grocery store, teaching a week long kid's art camp, and hopefully a few single day workshops at the Art League of Houston (what’s next, I don’t know, but I have come up with a few “plans” to tell those “people” who must ask).

That's enough about me for now, please come back to read the first interview. Until then feel free to check out my website http://melissawalter.us or post comments for questions you have for artists.

 

Untitled 4 (wall piece), masonite, acrylic paint, cement, charcoal, graphite, 11 x 8 x 6”, 2012.

Views: 137

Tales From the Tool Box - A Crafthaus Online Exhibition

Diana Greenwood
‘There is always one moment in childhood…’

Mantel Box 230 x 330 x 45 mm

Mantel Box in Cherry wood with a hinged glass door, containing a silver vessel marked ‘drink me’, marbles, sweets and found objects

A piece about childhood, forgotten toys, favorite stories and the loss of innocence as the future beckons, inspired by ‘Garden of Love’ by William Blake.

Image Credit: Diana Greenwood

www.diana-greenwood.com

View the new CRAFTHAUS online exhibition (October 24-November 24, 2014)

Tales from the Tool Box - Chapter 1

Curated by Mark Fenn - Studiofenn, UK

Latest Activity

Profile IconSibel Akay and Heather Perry joined crafthaus
14 hours ago
Brigitte Martin posted blog posts
yesterday
Brigitte Martin posted a video

Entfaltung collapsible fashion by Jule Waibel

See more architecture and design movies at http://www.dezeen.com/movies Royal College of Art graduate Jule Waibel has designed a series of folded paper clothes and accessories including a dress that adjusts and expands as you move and a…
yesterday
Lindsey Snell posted photos
Tuesday
Stefanis Alexandres liked Vicky Saragouda's photo
Tuesday
Stefanis Alexandres liked Vicky Saragouda's photo
Tuesday
Brigitte Martin posted blog posts
Monday
Harriete Estel Berman posted a status
"The merchandising of making exploits new technologies & brings fresh blood, but comes at a cost as well.http://j.mp/1wBtHYH"
Monday
Harriete Estel Berman posted a status
"Craft World Sucks Like Vampires http://j.mp/1wBtHYH"
Monday
Rebecca Skeels commented on Rebecca Skeels's group The Association for Contemporary Jewellery
"The Goldsmiths' Centre in Clerkenwell is the leading charity for the professional training of goldsmiths. We run a dynamic programme of courses, workshops and events for those working or aspiring to work in the industry. SETTING OUT 2015Are you…"
Monday
The Justified Sinner commented on Brigitte Martin's blog post Ayasha Wood - Embroidery
"Impressive!  I love the embroidered tweed. "
Monday
Harriete Estel Berman commented on Mark Fenn - Studiofenn's group Tales From the Tool Box - Chapter One
"I just love the way Dauvit Alexander uses his materials. While the selection of a "corroded iron cap from an oil-tank" and a "polycarbonate reflector material from a crashed car" are unorthodox choice of materials, they are…"
Sunday

A modern metalsmith/metal artist can be found working in traditional metals as well as in nontraditional materials. The designs can range from the classic to the extravagant, and the techniques can either be centuries old or decidedly current.

The wide range of expression preferences, design options, materials, and processes has lead within our field to unfavorable misconceptions, misunderstandings and in some cases even outright disdain between artists. Can the metal and jewelry field overcome its division and send out a much-needed signal?

We appreciate and respect our historical past and acknowledge that current materials have a rightful place in jewelry/object making!

DETAILS on exhibition premise, call for artists, submission guidelines.....

Videos

  • Add Videos
  • View All

© 2014   Created by Brigitte Martin.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service