Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Hard work and a little luck.

AGTA Spectrum 2015- Platinum Honors.© Mimi Favre

I have won an award! Having entered the AGTA Spectrum Award Competition seven times, my entry for 2015 was awarded Platinum Honors in the Classical category, a distinction from the Platinum Guild of America. I admit…. it feels good! 

The AGTA Spectrum Awards competition was created to promote colored gemstones in fine jewelry. Designers and manufacturers of all levels enter. Many have more resources including access to the newest technology like laser welding and CAD or amazing (expensive) gemstones. It's not hard to feel a bit defeated before starting. Last year I skipped this competition, and I nearly talked myself out of it this time, too. And, like any competition, the process of choosing winners is by nature subjective. 

Nonetheless, I enter for several reasons. Obviously, winners do garner publicity, and recognition is always welcome, but competitions have parameters and deadlines that create a framework, and freedom for the artist to create something of their choice, without the constraints that usually exist when the piece must meet the needs of a customer. So, for me, it’s about the spirit of competition and the personal fulfillment of completing a challenge.

Like many artists, I work alone. I design and make the prototypes in my jewelry. Aside from using some skilled services such as casting, I also do all of the construction and finishing on my work. I bought this group of tourmaline one year ago. I am drawn to green stones and especially the shades found in tourmaline that are found in many colors. I thought the green would show best against white metal. Platinum is the whitest of precious metals and great to work in.

Once I had settled on a long dangle with the two thin marquis stones, I re-arranged the stones over and over.  
©Mimi Favre
©Mimi Favre

©Mimi Favre

©Mimi Favre
The olive green stones are pretty, but I decided not to use them. The faceted prasolite did not belong.

Next I fabricated silver setting prototypes. 10mm, 9mm, 8mm  and a marquis setting. These were cast in platinum.
M. Favre
AGTA Spectrum 2015- Platinum Honors. ©Mimi Favre