1.WORKING TOGETHER IS BETTER THAN WORKING ALONE (MOST OF THE TIMES)
As soon as you get out of school you might feel pretty lost and overwhelmed, you have to learn how to manage your time and choose what to invest your energy in. I think that having good professional “partners” is a big help and a way to feel constantly challenged and motivated. You can share opportunities and knowledge, discuss and receive feedback to your ideas, push and get pulled when you need it. Not everybody feels comfortable in working with other people though, it’s a matter of taste and luck, so find your way and always respect others.
2.FIND A GOOD WORKING SPACE
One of my first needs and wishes as I started working was to make the most out of my studio space. I felt that working in a “secret” workshop was not right because I wanted to use it in any way possible, not only for making my pieces, but also for selling them, teaching and attracting new clients and people interested in craftsmanship and applied arts. This, together with my wish for working in a lively and international environment brought me to start Officine Nora.
3. TRY ANYTHING ONCE AND CHOOSE WHAT SUITS YOU
The jewelry field has many different aspects. Within its framework you can find various working opportunities that range from teaching to working on commissions, from designing for third parties to curating exhibitions, from shooting pictures to writing. Being curious and trying yourself out on different tasks could open new job opportunities you didn’t think about. What’s important though is finding your focus and not loosing it!
4. NOT ALL OPPORTUNITIES ARE GOOD OPPORTUNITIES
Bad experiences happen! Sometimes, the eager for showing your work and selling it can lead you to trust unprofessional subjects. Once, I sent some of my pieces, together with some fellow artists, to a newborn and self declared gallerist that lost all our pieces in one shot. It took us months and an incredible amount of effort to have our money back. So respect your work! Try to be as professional and accurate as possible, never do things based only on handshakes or verbal agreements, even if you know the people you’re dealing with. Learn to say no when things are conducted carelessly.
5. JEWELRY IS MEANT TO BE WORN
Jewelry is meant to be worn, and therefore sold. You spent years and money learning techniques and now that you can produce your pieces don’t be afraid about how they will be judged and labeled. As long as you produce well made objects and you don’t copy other people’s work there’s nothing to be afraid of. The public will be different from place to place, and will have diverse tastes and interests. So try to engage, or even educate, your public, and if you find a certain public doesn’t understand your work just change it, and look for other frameworks. So don’t get sad by making pieces you don’t feel like making just for the sake of selling them and don’t get frustrated trying to place your work where it doesn’t belong, but try to educate your public or try to create your own space!
Marherita de Martino Norante was born, lives and works in Florence. She holds a degree in Idustrial Design, and studied jewerly at Alchimia Contemporary Jewelry School and hand engraving at Le Arti Orafe. In 2010, together with some friends, she started 1×1 collective, a project with the aim of spreading and showcasing contemporary jewelry in a simple and direct way. She organized some exhibitions for the collective and took part in others like: Alchemic Experiences (Lorber Gallery, Tel Aviv, Israel), Conceptual Jewelry exhibition (Gallery Putti, Riga, Latvia), Premio Fondazione Cominelli (Cominelli Foundation, Cisano di San Felice, Brescia, Italy), JOYA Fair (contemporary jewellery week Barcelona with 1×1), and was selected for Schmuck 2012 (Munich, Germany). Her work is also part of some private and public collections in Italy, Austria, Holland and Russia. In 2013 she founded Officine Nora, a co-working space in the heart of Florence, born to create and promote contemporary jewelry.
Originally posted by Alchimia.it – Tips for Future Designers #2 Margherita de Martino Norante