I have an artist's spirit and a gypsy soul. And, a heart for artistic jewelry. I love to create things. If I could do it all day long every day, I would. There’s a soul-deep connection in the work you do with your hands. Firing and molding metal. Hand sawing delicate details or bold words. Refining edges and shapes. The feel and smell of buttersoft leather. Cutting, carving, creating texture. Watching a piece emerge from a pencil drawing to shiny silver or gold. Handcrafting has been a part of me since I was young, and I’ve created a lot of different things over the years. But, jewelry making has captured me. I worked in the accounting field part-time while my son was in high school, then full-time after he graduated. Looking for a creative balance, I began taking jewelry classes. Hooked on the processes, jewelry making became my creative passion in my off hours. I am self-taught in some areas, class taught in others. I started designing jewelry, opened my business, D’zyn By Dana; and twenty years later am still completely in love with the art of making jewelry. Overall, jewelry design has been relatively smooth; but you know those creative juices don’t always flow, even when you are doing something you love. I came to a stretch where I just couldn’t come up with a single creative idea. So, I decided to step back and try a different creative expression. I took a painting class. I wanted to approach shapes and color from a different perspective. I wanted to just let go and create and hoped that it might ‘jump start’ my creativity in jewelry design. I had taken a few art courses in college but had not worked much in acrylics. That was eleven years ago, and I am still hopelessly in love with the art of painting. Jewelry and painting are my perfect mix. They each entice, encourage and challenge the other, always spurring each other on. So, now my weeks are a mix of both my loves. As a designer, I work in a variety of mediums, but I specialize in metalsmithing and precious metal clay. I am a Senior Certified Instructor in Art Clay and Level 3 Certified in Precious Metal Clay. Metal clay is a medium consisting of particles of silver, gold or other base metals held together by an organic binder and water, that once sculpted, refined and fired becomes a pure piece of that metal. In the case of silver, pure fine silver. It’s amazing to work with. I also love the many techniques in metalsmithing. Hand forging (the process of heating metal and shaping by hand) and hand piercing and sawing metal. I have a mix of hand forging, piercing and sawing in two of my design collections: CrossWords Jewelry and Wabi Collection. I am drawn to organic and free-form design, the freedom to let go and create in a natural, organic and imperfect way. Hence, the ‘Wabi Collection’ – 'Embracing the Art of Imperfection’. None of the pieces are perfectly made. Each is hand cut, shaped and naturally created. Some are delicate and elegant. Others are uneven, opposites or upside down of each other. And, a few have a raw, earthy appeal. It’s been an amazing journey so far. I love the processes involved in creating, whether it’s jewelry design or painting. I love the interaction with other artists, and the joy of helping someone find a piece they will love wearing or hanging in their home. If I were to go back and start over, I would take more creative and art classes in school, and as an artist and designer, I would have experimented more, early on. Trust my instincts. Break the rules. Why not! Some of my favorite jewelry pieces and paintings are the result of letting go of the rules, trying something you think won’t work, and seeing where it goes. The metals I work with are sterling silver, 14 karat gold fill, 14 karat white gold, 14 karat yellow gold, fine silver, bronze, copper, and stainless steel. I also incorporate a variety of stones: natural hand cut stones, black diamonds, fancy blue diamonds, sapphires, rubies, gemstones, pearls, aquamarine, tourmaline (the list goes on). Ok, I admit – I go crazy over stones! Seriously, there is no telling what you'll find here. I can't get enough stones. All pieces are 100% handmade by me in my studio. Because each piece is individually handcrafted, there are slight variations adding character and interest to each. No two pieces are exactly alike. In this place you will find the wanderings of my mind and the quirks and voice of my designs - my heart formed in gold and silver or poured out on canvas.