Maker of the Month: Diane Cook
From beadwork, Diane started to incorporate vintage found jewelry and rhinestones into her own work, up-cycling once old pieces into something completely new and ready to wear. It wasn't until about eight years ago when Diane had an interest in learning more metal smithing in her pieces, and now considers herself primarily a silversmith when it comes to her skillset. Diane says, "I began watching videos on the Beaducation website, buying metal stamps and various tools and supplies for the last 15 years", which is what has continued to advance her jewelry making skillset, but also the education she provides to her own students.
In 2016, Diane stopped traveling the country to teach at art retreats, and became the Creative Workshop Director of Multiplicity Art Studio, where she is responsible for bringing in various artists to teach at the two locations in her hometown of Katy, Texas. She explains that it's been a glorious ride, and she loves teaching all she knows to her students in the jewelry making classes she teaches.
Unlike some makers, Diane often makes elements in surplus without any direct project in mind, that she will later incorporate into her jewelry pieces as she makes them. When asked what inspires her pieces, she says, "The stones I set in my pieces, most often inspire me. I also like to use various metal components, which I make ahead of time, to use as I design. This simple process gives me the liberty to move forward in the design process more efficiently , without having to stop and make them first."
When asked what skills she recently learned and would like to expand on, Diane shared her experience learning how to melt and pour her first silver ingot bar, which resulted in a shiny hand stamped cuff bracelet. She says that she never tires of learning new skills, and is always excited when she finds new tutorials online or in the Beaducation.com library. She also loves looking into using new tools to make her jewelry making process easier and more efficient, using the example of the metal ring clamp she recently purchased. She loves learning new skills because not only does she learn them for herself, but she's able to carry them over to share with her students in her classes.
Diane shares that Beaducation has been a big part of her jewelry making and artistic journey, and started our her jewelry making journey with tutorials from Beaducation.com. She often recommends Beaducation.com to her students, and recently had a project that incorporated our Art Deco Metal Design Stamp and our Lotus Blossom Metal Design Stamp. Diane tries to be active on our Facebook Group, and shared that she recently watched one of Lisa's Facebook lives where she learned a new skill or two, she loves these live streams because she can always learn a new tip or trick.
Thanks to Diane for being a loyal Beaducation customer. To see Diane's jewelry pieces, check out Diane Cook Jewelry. Do you want to potentially be featured as a future Maker of the Month? Fill out our Maker of the Month form here.
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