Sunday, October 24, 2010

MEGA CRAFT HATCH 23rd Oct,2010

Setting up my first individual stall at State Library of Victoria (experimedia) in the morning, I was very much in awe. There was so much talent around me and I was also honoured to be a part of it. I wanted to present myself informally to the customers so I drew my work on foam board and wrote by hand (instead of printing) for a display. This felt very amateurish but I got good feedback from the customers. Coming from Victoria mason " Display is good, very informative". My work was about kinetic jewellery, so I had to show movement to people so only displaying my work was not enough. Hence, I drew my work and showed how petals rotate with arrows. I also kept giving demonstrations on how to wear one piece with different variations. People really like the idea of movement and gave me some positive feedback.

The above picture was taken in the end of the day. I am still smiling which means that I had a very good day and I want to thank Craft Victoria for giving me this opportunity and my fellow stallholders for encouraging me. It was a really good opportunity to put yourself out in the market and see how people react. And when they say "wow", all the pain seems worthwhile. After I finished packing, I was very much motivated and more determined to deliver the promise that I made to all the people who appreciated my work.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Craft to Consumer: Craft Victoria

Finally, I was able to get Craft Victoria professional membership which i was putting off for numerous reasons. So the first session i attended was Craft to consumer. This information session was for emerging and established makers seeking to expand their market reach in retail sector. Gaye Naismith and Victoria Mason shared their experieneces in retail, markets and wholesale sectors.
It gave a useful insight to understand the difference between wholesale and retail markets. One really needs to know their product and its target market. Above all when dealing with retail sector, one needs to present oneself professionally-" always give an invoice and keep a detail record of your consignments".And before presenting yourself make sure you have enough stock to fulfill the demand.

My product is quite labour intensive and i can only produce limited edition range. The technique i am using is inspired from mokume-gane and I have been trying hard to make shakudo (copper and gold) and shibhuichi (copper and silver). The most difficult part is to configure how to melt copper to make alloys. Sometimes its such a pain!

GANOSKIN came to my rescue, it really has all the answers. Putting crushed charcoal besides copper helps preventing copper to absorb oxygen. I cant believe I produced 1083 degree celsius temperature and copper finally melted.

The above picture is a test piece. The black lines is shakudo ( I was so happy to see the black colour after applying patina).  I really want to call it black gold (instead of shakudo) as apart from having 4% 22ct yellow gold, it is enormously labour intensive. Now am making some more shakudo, need to get hold of the technique!