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Friday, May 11, 2012

The Art of the "It" Factor

Every artist dreams of coming up with the next "Thing". Something that no one else is doing or take what everyone is doing (Marginally), twist it, improve upon it and make it better. Then a name-Name your art with a completely unique, instantly recognizable name and again, find something that has not been done To Death. The chances of finding a genre, hitting the popularity curve, carving out a niche and then making it profitable (and fun for you, The Artist) are about a gazillion to 1 odds. But when you hit that all too elusive sweet spot, oh how sweet it is!

Dr Brassy on Etsy

I feel I have done that with my Steampunk Sightmares Eyes ™ ©. The name, the idea, the materials and workmanship- all unique to me. It's been a labor of love, much research and development, but now I have my little creepy, beautiful evil eye babies to show the world and surprise of surprises, the world loves them.
Sightmares Eyes
Sightmares ™ © Eye

Backup a bit to 1988 when Kimberlee (my real name) was doing Steampunk jewelry long before there even was "Steampunk". I was simply a girl, in a small town, doing jewelry so completely odd that very few people noticed and many who did, thought a had more than one screw loose.

Soft Steampunk
I think what helped get me out there as an artist was to come up with my alt-persona, Dr Brassy Steamington. She has a personality and sass, all her own. She has her own Facebook page, her own way of doing things and a life that is drenched in Steampunk ethos.

Dr Brassy became the vehicle in which people could identify me with my art. They want to know Dr Brassy, want to own a piece of Dr Brassy and that's where the connection comes in. Artist+Art+Customer = A whole experience.
Dr Brassy

I am not saying that everyone should come up with an alter ego or that everyone should do Steampunk because it's the current hot trend. Trends fade and there is always a new genre to take its place. Remember that I have been loyal to my Steampunk credo for over 25 years. That's a long time to wait for the world to catch up.

What I do recommend is that you find your "It" factor and put all your energy into it. What is it that you do, better than anyone? Are you a Magician with wrapped wire? Are you the Clay Goddess? Do you take Patina to places no one has seen? Everyone has a gift. The trick seems to be in finding it. There are artists that will try every new material that comes along and they do measurably well in each. But to be really successful, it would be quite expensive and exhausting to be a PMC Clay, Resin, Stained Glass, Brass Stamping, Wrapped Wire and Beading Artist, all at the same time.

Ultimately you also have to be happy with the creation process. There is no amount of money that could make me craft anything that makes me miserable. This is probably why, when I was a paid seamstress, I hated to sew but now that I sew for relaxation and fun, I love it again.

So find what makes you happy, give it a unique name, perfect the process, and then come tell me about it so I can promote you to the stars and back!

Dr Brassy on Etsy

~~~~Dr Brassy


  1. I love your Sightmares pieces, too...they are amazingly creepy and beautiful at the same time.

  2. I am sure you are the person Maker Faire was designed for.
    You do remind me of the talented crazies I have met doing renaissance faires.

    Clicking over now to see more sightmares. Love them.