22 Feb Inspiration Diaries with Beth Carey
“When the Muse strikes I need to take advantage of it”. This is what being an artist means to Beth Carey. 1968 at Middletown High School was where it all started for Beth. Her love for jewelry making was born and continued through the years. After graduating with a degree in Art Education at St Mary’s College, she took many classes everywhere that she could including Maryland College of Art & Design (MICA).
Currently she sells her work to various local shops including The Muse and teaches at The Delaplaine Visual Arts Center and Hagerstown Community College. Last summer she completed her labor of love to build a dream workshop where people can come to use her studio and take classes at the foot of a gorgeous view of the mountains. As I found out during our time in her studio, everything was well thought out to create such a dream studio; a self proclaimed “tool addict”, she has everything a jeweler might need, ergonomic and eco friendly work stations, and a fully integrated ventilation system.
1. What inspires you? Nature- Items in nature are where I get most of my inspiration. And other artists even if they’re not jewelry artists. Or little kids; my nephew made a paper pinwheel that inspired me…it could move…it could be a rivet…earrings…
2. How do you turn those ideas into action? There’s a lot of waiting for the idea to strike. I spend a lot of time on how to execute; which metal to use, what the stone is, how to put it together….
3. Do you start with a plan or are you spontaneous? A little of both. Sometimes I have a plan and I will sketch it out on graph paper and I will come back to it. Other things are really spontaneous. I ebb and flow between the two.
4. What is the greatest enemy to creativity? When the Muse is blocked. When I let negative emotions get in the way.
5. How do you get yourself out of a creative rut? Usually I have to do something that makes me feel really good. A walk, a glass of wine, writing an email to a friend, or going through old pictures of a trip visiting friends in France.
6. What does an average day in the life look like? If I’m not on a tight schedule I feel like I’m wasting time. I get up, feed the animals, yell at the old cat, have breakfast and coffee. I look at where I left off the night before or I go teach a class. Sometimes I break for lunch/sometimes I don’t. Sometimes I fix dinner. Then I work at night. I work quite a bit at night. There’s no one to distract you.
7. Who are your mentors? Pat Schroeder- a lady who got me started at Middletown. John Fix- such an incredible metalsmith that I met in the guild. Nick Barnes- a metalsmith and teacher in the Washington Goldsmiths guild. He’s very encouraging and very positive.
8. What other hobbies do you enjoy? I love to bake, I love to garden in the summer, and I love to hang out with my children.
9. How do you maintain balance? I try not to take myself too seriously. As an adult looking back into family history, trying not to take myself so seriously as my ancestors.
10. What words of wisdom do you have for others embarking on their own creative journey? Don’t wait. Don’t wait to try it. Pace yourself and write a lot in your journal.
Below is a quick answer sheet that I had Beth fill out listing her top faves in each category…
Find Beth at bethcareyjewelry.com and studio2bcj.com. Follow her on facebook @bethcareyjewelry and @studio2bcj.