Monday, July 16, 2007

INCrowd's Interview, 7/15/07 - Dana, aka newmoondesign

This week's featured seller is Dana of NewMoonDesign. She is a lampwork artist, and her work seems to speak for itself, just beautiful! Her story is one of great sadness, and overcoming through art. Her work is a tribute to all that is beautiful in the world. I will let her words speak for themselves.

"Hi everyone! First of all, I was so excited to be asked to be a featured artist for the INCrowd blog…so thank you so much for the honor!

My name is Dana G. and I am a 40 year old stay at home mom living in Columbus, Indiana. I have two wonderful and precocious boys…Cohen, age 8 and Aidan, age 6…and they keep me very busy! I also had a little girl, Kaeli who would be 5 if she was still with us…but she passed away unexpectedly and tragically at 14 months old. She is absolutely without a doubt my everlasting inspiration.

I have always been artistic from childhood on, but was never really channeled in any direction. So I toyed with all different mediums and had lots of fun playing around…but I never really tried to do anything serious with my creativity. I was very afraid of failure and equally terrified of success, so instead of taking any “risks”, I worked for years as a Quality Control Documentation Clerk. Decidedly the most boring job I ever could have picked for myself.

In August of 2002, I finally quit my job as it was only paying for daycare anyway. Little did I know that two months later, my world would be turned upside down. On October 28th, I came home from shopping with my sister and prepared my three exhausted little kids for their naps. I laid them each down…then headed back to the sewing machine to finish Kaeli’s Halloween costume. Little did I know, she was pulling out a cord that ran between the slats of our miniblinds and putting it around her neck. It took her life silently as I worked.

In the horrific blur of months that followed, my best friend bought me a book on making bent wire jewelry. I had never considered making jewelry…but I desperately needed something to keep my mind and body busy. So I dove in head first. I made jewelry morning, noon and night. Compulsively, to keep the pain at bay…I worked and worked. Our home looked like some crazy woman’s overflowing jewelry box. But somewhere along the way, I found that I loved making jewelry. I bought more books and started researching on the internet.

In my searches, I stumbled across a lampwork artist…bought her beads…and began chatting with her. Before I could make it a conscious thought, I KNEW I was meant to be a lampwork artist. I began to plan. I sold my jewelry and stashed the money away to buy my equipment and to take a class. It wasn’t long before I reached my goals and started torching away in my studio. Now here I am, two years later, selling my work online in several venues…and absolutely loving every minute of the creative process!

I can tell you this, losing my daughter taught me some very important lessons. After her death, I no longer fear failure – or success. Fear is a crippling disease, it keeps us from growing and being our true selves. I honestly feel I have experienced the worst fear I ever could face…and at this point there is no sense in being afraid of anything else. Life is meant to be lived, embraced, and cherished. And so here I am…creating with the spirit of my beautiful baby girl in my heart…and I am embracing life.

Dana :)"

Please take a moment to visit her shop on Etsy by clicking here NewMoonDesign. Her story has been a real inspiration to me, and I'm sure to all who will read this.

8 comments:

  1. Such beautiful work. I believe I see that little angel's influence in every piece. Thank you, Dana for sharing your heartbreaking story. Your strength and endurance are an inspiration to all of us!

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  2. Dana, thank you for sharing your difficult journey to finding your artistic self. I am sitting here with tears in my eyes and amazed at your strength.

    I normally am not at a loss for words but right now I just can't find the right words to express what I want to say to you Dana. Only thank you for honoring us with sharing Kaeli's memory and great inspiration to you.

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  3. Gwen...thank you so much. I truly can't express to you how much I DO feel her presence when I create. At times I've almost felt as though I'm being pushed along this creative path with no volition of my own. Or maybe at least that seemed the case at the beginning...now I do feel a determination of my own that I never felt before.

    My entire life I've had people tell me how talented I am, how I should do something with it...but I never would. I was terrified to try.

    But I never knew true terror until that day when she left us. And I realize that everything happens for a reason, and that I don't fully know all the reasons why she left...but I do know that life is most definitely for living. And when you don't live your passions fully, you rob not only yourself, but those around you. Fear should never stand in the way.

    Thanks for letting me blab on...it feels good to talk to other artists...people who can understand where I'm coming from.

    Dana :)

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  4. Deb,

    You're a strong woman yourself, so thank you so much for saying that. It means alot to me. I'll have to show you all a beautiful picture my husband took of Kaeli and I in the field across the street from our house. It's my favorite picture of us together.

    Thanks again, girls. I'm so glad to have found you all!

    Dana :)

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  5. Your story is so touching and inspiring. You're undoubtedly a strong soul. Thank you for sharing your story.

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  6. Thank you for telling your story. And the depth and beauty of your journey shines through in your work.

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  7. I hope that she never stops visiting and inspiring you. Through you she can go on to inspire many more. Blessings to you and yours.

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