Hi, everyone. As the editor of Art Jewelry magazine, I don't often
have the time to post to websites, but I thought I'd take a moment to
respond to a few of the comments made here about this thread.
In spite of all my whining here, I still intend to renew my
subscription to LJ. I'm not ready to let go of it yet. But the way
that AJ keeps raising the bar is a very encouraging development.
I subscribe to Lapidary Journal, too, Mona. I think they lost their
focus over the past couple of years when they jumped on the beading
bandwagon and began hosting shows and such, but I suspect they will
soon regain their direction. I hope they soon regain the content and
quality they once featured on a regular basis. Perhaps I'm
optimistic, but I think the market can bear two quality publications
dedicated to jewelrymaking.
I agree with some of your observations, but personally I was
disappointed with the latest issue of Art Jewelry because of its
strong emphasis on what is a very expensive medium to work with
(unless you like tiny things), viz., metal clay. And, as I
mentioned before, I rarely see things modelled from metal clay
that look as good as the fabricated jewelry I see.
I still subscribe to both magazines, partly because I'm always
looking for good solderless jewelry projects for my students
(since I teach in a place where I have no torch or storage space).
And, I still see a few things I enjoy for myself.
Judy, I will admit that the quality of some of the pieces in Art
Jewelry may not be up to the caliber of the average project you see
in some other magazines. Please bear in mind we are a start-up
publication and still in the throes of establishing ourselves in the
marketplace. Any magazine is only as good as the quality of the
submissions it receives. We are working VERY hard at getting
top-notch, innovative projects of every medium other than beading.
Thankfully, artists out there have begun to discover Art Jewelry,
and we are starting to get in some really stellar submissions.
As to polymer clay, I agree with you that some really interesting
pieces have come to light. I've contacted a few artists whose work I
thought was amazing, but no nibbles yet. If you have the ear of any
good artist you know, by all means, send them our way!
Having a magazine that clearly understands that there's a whole
next step in the artistic learning process is just super, speaking
as a self-taught metalsmith and lapidary who moved from beads
right into cutting and setting my own stones. I learned quite a
bit from that AMAZING soldering article. Look it up folks, it's a
keeper even for old hats who develop bad habits!
Thanks, Roseann! We appreciate the kind words, and it's nice to see
that someone recognizes the need for a magazine beyond beading but
before gemcutting. That's an awfully wide gap, and Art Jewelry is
trying to fill it with publishing a variety of projects geared
toward artists of all levels. (Forgive me if that sounds horribly
commercial, but it is true.)
Although, most of the projects in the latest issue are metal clay
projects...but I like the fact that Art Jewelry is geared toward
people who, like me, have some basic metal skills, but are maybe
coming from a beading/wire background and starting to do more
metalsmithing. While most of the fabrication projects in LJ seem
to be geared toward someone more advanced than I am, the
fabrication projects in Art Jewelry seem like things I could
tackle. I hope Art Jewelry continues to have articles for the
beginning to intermediate level of fabrication. I also enjoyed
reading the article about forming a wood bangle - not something
I've ever thought about trying, but it's nice to see some
interesting variety in a jewelry magazine, other than the standard
materials and techniques I'm used to reading about.<<
Lapidary Journal features stories on gemcutting and commercial
jewelrymaking, two areas that Art Jewelry currently has no intention
of pursuing. We are content exploring a wide array of media-hence
the story on the wood cuff-and, indeed, our goal is get artists to
think beyond the usual fare. With that said, however, I can tell you
that our magazine is geared toward an equal mix of metal, metal
clay, and wire, with smaller portions of less common media, such as
glass and stone, organics, and enamels/resins/lacquers.
I received a couple of sample copies of the Art Jewelry magazine.
I thought it was awful. Because I was expecting "art jewelry" not
a bunch of metal and fimo clay projects. At least Lapidary Journal
is about lapidary materials. If the magazine had called itself
Clay Jewelry or Art Clay Jewelry I would have found that easier to
accept. But it is not about Art Jewelry. It's about clay. I wanted
to be inspired not see a bunch of beginning pmc projects. Truth in
advertising is needed here. Bottom line, I was very disappointed
in it. 8-(
Ah, the vagaries of a title! I joined the company after the title
was selected for this magazine, Carla, and I understand your
confusion. "Art jewelry" as a term exists in the industry and
connotes high-end, gallery- or museum-quality jewelry. "Art Jewelry"
the magazine is meant to imply jewelry made using artistic methods.
I admit, we have a ways to go before our title fully conveys our
As to our inclusion of metal-clay and polymer-clay projects in our
pages, well, some of them are every bit as artistic as traditional
metalworked pieces. In fact, our July 2005 issue features an
incredible piece by Terri Torbeck (our Associate Editor) that
combines the two mediums in spectacular fashion. These "new-fangled"
mediums may not be your cup of tea, but I happen to find the wide
array of media covered in our magazine endlessly fascinating.
According to the folks at Art Jewelry, they're publishing
according to projects submitted. So if we want to see more
projects that AREN'T metal clay (and I'm among that group) then
somebody who knows what they're doing has to SUBMIT a project to
the magazine. Please, please, please? I was happier with the last
issue than the one before, but I did still feel it was heavy on
the PMC stuff, which I have less than no interest in.
Zen, I completely agree with you that our last issue was a bit heavy
on metal clay. Our July issue (which hits the newsstands first week
in June) will also feel like it has too much metal clay. But Art
Jewelry, as I said above in my response to Judy Bjorkman, is in the
start-up phase: We fill pages with what we've got. At the moment, it
happens to be a lot of metal-clay projects.
I cannot stress enough to the readers of Orchid how much we need
your submissions! It is YOU who shape the content of this magazine,
YOU who give it character and merit. If your jewelry or your
technique is interesting and would be worthwhile to other readers,
please share it. Don't worry if your writing isn't stellar-that's
what my staff and I are here for. We will polish your prose and make
an article worthy of your piece, whether it is composed of
traditional metal, metal clay or polymer clay, or some other medium.
Well, I won't take up any more time with this thread, but if anyone
wants to email me personally, please do so. I appreciate the
opportunity to respond to all the comments posted here about Art
Jewelry. Thank you!
Dori Olmesdahl, Editor
Art Jewelry Magazine