Thursday, September 18, 2008

Meet Jen Maestre (jenmaestre)

Bead Art Originals welcomes Jen Maestre! Jen is the artist behind the shop which bears her name, jenmaestre, a place filled with unique objects created from pencils. Jen's work includes sculptures, jewelry, and ACEOs (Art Cards, Editions and Originals); and her medium of choice is something you might consider to be unusual -- colored pencils!

To create her incredible pencil sculptures, which are exhibited nationally, Jen takes hundreds of pencils, cuts them into one-inch sections, drills a hole in each section (to turn them into beads), sharpens them all, and then sews them together. The beading technique on which she relies the most is peyote stitch. In addition to her sculptures, Jen uses pencils and epoxy to create pendants, pins, barettes, and other pieces.

Jen's first exposure to amazing beadwork was in the Kathlyn Moss / Alice Scherer book, The New Beadwork. She was so inspired by the images that she taught herself how to make simple objects using the instructions from the back of the book. From there, Jen says it was all downhill.

Her work has been featured in several publications, including 500 Baskets, 500 Beaded Objects, The Best in Contemporary Beadwork 2002, and recently in Mary Englebreit's Home Companion and Wired.

You can see more of Jen's amazing work on her website. (Be sure to check out the portfolio, and click the images to see them larger.) Check out her flickr photostream to see both completed works and works in progress.

Finally, be sure to check Jen's Etsy shop to see her current offerings.


Melody September 19, 2008 at 12:40 AM  

Very interesting profile! I've admired Jen's work for a long time.

Triz Designs September 19, 2008 at 11:36 AM  

Amazing artist!!!! I couldn't believe when I read that these amazing sculptures are actually beadwoven!!!! simply wow!!!!!!!!!

Carol Dean September 19, 2008 at 1:08 PM  

Jen is my beadweaving hero! Her work blows me away!

thebeadedlily September 19, 2008 at 6:38 PM  

Nice to meet the maker of such uniqueness! That's what it's all about!

MAKUstudio September 22, 2008 at 3:51 PM  

So honored to be on a team with you! Your work is extraordinary!!!

Smadar's Treasure October 4, 2008 at 2:27 PM  

I am amazed by Jen's unique work. So colorful and interesting! Nice to meet you Jen :)