With the holidays almost here I wanted to share an idea with all of you.
I love to surround myself with people who also understand this idea and make things. It is with pleasure that I share my life with artist of every kind. Most are people I have known for years and have struggled to have a voice for their passions. Most work other jobs to support themselves and pay for their supplies. So while thinking about what you want your gifts to say to those you give them to, think about supporting an artist. If you are not able to make something handmade yourself then let a person who has a wonderful skill help.
These are just a few of the artist that I know and support. They are just part of a wonderful culture of local artist that need all of us to keep working. It is through the arts that we teach our children that there is more to the world then what we all see at the huge chain stores and the value of things that are hand-made. Add a hand-made items to you gift giving this year and open up the door to a conversation about who made it and how. If we are lucky we maybe able to teach our children about how reclaiming, recycling works or about how to learn a new skill or how a tradition continues from our past.
My brother William Lowrey ( Bill) painted and carved any piece of wood he could find. I still remember having a wooden skate board that he craved and painted while he was in High School. Over the years he as grown as an artist and become a master furniture builder and sculptor in the Denver Colorado area. He has spent years reclaiming lost lumber to make into something new. A favorite piece of mine is a Reclaimed Redwood table that he made a few years back it is the perfect balance of beauty and usefulness. He also makes sculptures from reclaimed marble and wood. Many of his works are about balance and texture with a very modern flair.
Contact him at his website or through his on-line gallery, http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/bill-lowrey-art.html.
My life long friend and photographer Alex Smits of Seattle Washington is “The King” of Girls-n-Guns photography. Thiers are many great photographers but he has taken his subject-matter to a new level. He has single-handedly removed many of the stereo types about the idea of woman and guns. What once had a fetish following is now a creative statement with a back bone of great skill and creative force. He makes beautiful calendars, cards and enlargements of his favorite subject matter.
Contact him at his website,http://www.alexsmits.com/ or his face book page.
My friend and mad knitter Jennifer at Lavishcraft in Denver, Colorado has been on her journey to bring hand knitted items from the back of your grandmas closet to the front line of fashion for years. She is a power house of unique design with a strong understanding of line and texture making the most simple items into detailed works of art. She is also able to do what the chain stores can’t and that is customise her work for you body or your needs.
You can contact her at her Esty shop at,http://www.etsy.com/shop/lavishcraft?ref=si_shop.
This year my family is focusing on making many of our holiday gifts and in my case I have made hundreds of jars of jelly that I will gift to family and friends in the tradition of my Grandmother and Father in Law. Hope every one likes the Apple Cider Jelly this year! What is it that you want to say with your gifts this year. Share something Hand Made !
Jolynn, I think handmade gifts are a great idea. I’m looking forward to buying some handmade things locally and on etsy, and also making some myself. Thanks for the great reminder…handmade gifts are truly extra special.
I look forward to a time, maybe in retirement, when I can work on some things during the year to give as gifts. I have made items for people, but I never quite was able to accomplish making a bunch of one thing to give as gifts, even though I set out to do that a few times. Of course, I also tried supporting my family as a cabinetmaker. That didn’t end well so I went back to consulting-banking-insurance to make a living. The projects you have highlighted in this post are beautiful, and the idea is a wonderful one.