This is my second post about creatives. Darlene is a teacher, a blogger, a mother, and an artist living in Santa Fe in New Mexico and in her spare time she creates unique jewellery out of old bike parts, cast off toys, buttons, bits of wire and anything old and interesting which she sell in her etsy shop darlicioushouse.
Can you tell me a little about your background?
I am a second grade teacher that creates for mental health stability!
What do you make?
I create one-of-a-kind upcycled industrial chic with bike parts and found objects.
What attracted you to this particular medium? How did you get started?
I started using found objects when i couldn't afford silver anymore (I was a silversmith for many years). I just got hooked on using what ever I could find, then one day, my husband broke a chain and I asked if it came apart even more and a love was born! The love of bike parts!
I have been creating since a child. My mom was a never ending enthusiast of making things and I caught the bug.
How does your practice fit in with your everyday life? Do you have your own studio space and when do you work and where?
Every day life? Not so much as I grade, lesson plan, create fun projects...all for school. But on the weekends, this is my life line! I work on an enclosed back porch that i share with my hubby and his bikes. Just a small WWII industrial desk, a table and me!
What are the best and worst aspects about working with this medium?
The best part is creating something unique out of cast offs and the down side is creating with just castoffs as they can be limiting at times but of course, freeing at others.
Junk inspires me and my desire for balance drives me. My family is my biggest cheerleader!
Do you get creative blocks? If so, how do you deal with it?
My creative blocks occur when the goods go low and I am limited in what I can create so to unblock, I scour etsy and thrift stores for new components as well as looking around on the ground. I once found a folded up, driven over yellow sanders pad that lent itself well to a fabulous neck piece made with an old pencil, black linen and inner tubing. I used the sewing machine to put it all together. What fun and it sold immediately, now that's inspiring!
What other mediums would you love to explore?
I would love to explore clay more. We had a local "you make it, we bake it" place which was fun and I got hooked, but it went out of business. The whole family would go and it would cost a little money but they provided the clay, tools and glazes. We made snakes, coiled pots, trays...whatever the mind saw. Fun, fun!
What do you hope to do next with your practice?
I want to get back into shows. I do the Santa Fe Recycled Art Show every year, but would enjoy doing more. I am currently looking to be juried in to a weekend gig for the summer. That would be cool!