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Entries in creative process (3)


Are You Creative? Do You Have a Head for Business? Are You an Entrepreneur?

I'm a creative person, and I know many other creative people. We all think deep creative thoughts and we love the process of making things. I like to write. Others I know are great in art, illustration, photography, jewelry making, interior design, embroidery, fashion design, screenplay writing, and product design. But few of the people I know are entrepreneurs. That means that few of us (me included) would risk their security and steady job income to open up our own businesses - enterprises based on what we create.

Yikes! Being an entrepreneur puts a completely different template over what we creatives do during the day, right? I know you're attracted to this blog because you have a love for the creative arts. You probably make something, either as a hobbyist or as a serious pro or somewhere in between, but you might not want to "risk it all" to start your own business. We've all known people who have tried and failed in such endeavors, so we don't want to be like them, right?

And deep down, are we all that confident about our creative skills? We can contribute our creativity to others in a defined job environment, but can we build a business sustained by what we dream about, make and fashion, and develop?

IF you have the guts to go for creative business glory, I encourage you. Period. I ENCOURAGE YOU. 

You heard right. I'm not going to try to talk you out of it, but only if you have the passion to pursue a creative business. Creative people are dissatisfied with things as they are. They have a strong desire to make things better, more beautiful, more elegant, more ... something! The only way to feel satisfied as a creative person is to have courage, focus, and vision - and to take action on your ideas.

Your creative outlet may be to help others make things. It could be assisting with craft time activities geared to young children or seniors. But you might want to base a business on your creativity. Mark McGuiness, the business coach pictured above, has what he calls the 5 Components of Creative Entrepreneurship. These are elements of success for any creative enterprise.

  1. Create (Don't Compete)
  2. Lead (Don't Manage)
  3. Communicate (Don't Be Shy)
  4. Automate (Don't Duplicate)
  5. Accelerate (Don't Stand Still)

Mark's creative entrepreneurship formula is also worth repeating here:

Creativity + Productivity = Success

It's helpful to visualize the end result of your creative work. Imagine what it will be like to design a new jewelry collection and have your own jewelry business. Visualize how you'll decorate a client's new living room and have your own interior design firm. Imagine how great your new photography website will look, promoting your creative services to the public. Hold that end result in your mind, and it will help fan your passion and intensity while diminishing fear and uncertainty.

But never start a business in a vacuum or, worse yet, in an atmosphere that is not supportive to you and your creative mission. Jettison your nay-saying friends and tune out the negative family members who don't believe in what you'd like to accomplish. That doesn't mean to blindly forge ahead, however! Do your research, and definitely seek out fellow creative folk in the community who can give you good feedback and criticism.

Feedback. Criticism. You need both before you plunge into any creative business endeavor. Hey, if you want to merely sell earrings of your own design at the holiday church bazaar, knock yourself out. But if you want to become Earrings R Us and open up stores across the country, then you'd better seek out friendly, but knowing feedback and criticism - the earlier in your business planning process, the better.

This means finding

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Carve Your Niche: Create a Work Space for Jewelry Design

Creative space from blog Soul PrettyIf you're anything like me and Sheffield jewelry design instructor Haley Mindes, you look forward to a shopping trip to a bead or craft store more than the mall. If so, you may already have an area in your home carved out for creating. Below you'll find some key elements that come into play in setting up a work space that's not only functional but also inspiring, encouraging you to sit down and create more often. Haley's told me what she thought better organization was all about.

I'd like to say that organization is the major contributor to my imaginative process - but in actuality, the messier my space, the more creative I'm being. If my work area is cleaned up it means I have completed a project or company is coming over! 

We all have projects we've been “meaning” to get to. Having a workspace that inspires you may have you sitting down to start on those projects sooner than later. Your work area may be on your dining room table, at a corner desk, or in a dedicated room that you can close the door to (lucky you, with no constant cleanup!). Haley and I hope that Corner desk by Martha Stewart on Home Depotthese tips will help you to create or improve your work space, and have you excited to sit down and start making!


Make it easy for yourself. Keeping organized means that you don’t have to spend lots of time hunting down what you need. You'll waste less time searching for things if they're always put away in the same place when you're not using them. Recycled glass jars, a magnetic spice rack, and pinned or clipped buckets or fabric bags can be great for storage.

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What Makes a Collection, Part 1 

Most jewelry designers have no difficulty with recognizing what a "collection" of jewelry is, but making one --- a strong one at that--- is something else entirely.  Figuring out what precisely goes into making a strong collection can be one of the most difficult things for a jewelry designer to do.  At least until they have some ground rules!! 

Alexis Bittar's "Elements" Collection Photo: Alexis Bittar

The jewelry of Alexis Bittar, by way of example, makes discussion of this subject a breeze as he --yes, a guy, and a striking one at that!--  is a master of the diverse, compelling and cohesive collection. The jewelry featured here is from his "Elements" Collection, which focuses on just that, using elements or components in multiple pieces as a means of creating a wide range of silhouettes or looks-- one of the keys element to a successful collection.  

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