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Member Spotlight

MarilynSpenceSL

“An engineer by training, I am a retired contract administrator for DTE. I actually started out beading with crystals and semi-precious stones after a trip to Flagstaff and Sedona in 2007. I was mesmerized by the healing and spiritual properties of the stones.

I soon became interested in expanding jewelry making to include metal and began metalsmithing classes at Fritz and Friends. Since then, I have taken classes at Armstrong Tool, Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center, and Studio JSD in Grand Haven. The best classes I've ever taken are the ones where I’ve learned the most or were the most challenging for me. In no particular order, the most challenging for me were chainmaille, stonesetting and casting.

Since my husband Glenn and I moved from the Detroit area in 2018 to a more remote area in mid-Michigan, I have joined many Facebook groups for inspiration and discussions. I also use YouTube and Pinterest for guidance.

I really enjoy forming, chainmaille, stone setting, and casting and I recently discovered crackle enamel techniques. I’ve been having a lot of fun with crackle during this last year. If I had to choose may absolute favorite technique, it is probably using the rolling mill to create lovely patterns with the use of texture plates from Kevin Potter, Oregon Silver Trails and Rolling Mill Resources.

My favorite piece that I have made is the one pictured here, the round copper textured pendant with squarish frame. I really enjoyed the challenge and engineering process of putting it together. It was a commission and my customer was very pleased with it.

Currently my work is not exhibited anywhere, but I am considering putting some pieces in Art Works in Big Rapids. For now all of my sales are commissions to friends and neighbors in our community. I am also in the process of creating an exhibit space in my home and looking forward to attending local craft shows here in Canadian Lakes, MI.

I have been a member of MSG for about 5 years.

Happily, my workshop is well equipped and has been a large contributor to my sanity in 2020. And will probably serve me well as 2021 opens up to social activities.”