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Bead artist Liudmyla Heggland
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1. Your work won a prize in the Fashion Colorworks 2013 beading contest. Why did you choose the category "Accessories"?

I've created quite a lot of women's jewelry during my career, that's my field of creativity and I'm very comfortable in it. I like when a woman "blooms" even stronger in the corresponding "frame". Now I have a rather large time limit, because I'm a working mom of one-year-old kid. Accordingly, I focus on the essentials, and many of my favorite crafts are waiting in the wings. At that moment, I really wanted to make with my hands something beautiful, and this contest has provided the opportunity. I was very interested to try something new, and not a regular necklace. The result was my July Hat.

2. There were many entries featuring flowers. Another bouquet could easily get lost in a beautiful garden, haven't you been scared to create your version of a "blossoming" item?

This is quite natural that many artists created bead flowers! Most of the participants of the contest began their work in winter or in early spring when the soul simply requires a "window" into summer. The contest submission finished in early summer, so that the flowers were again very timely. In my entry I tried to show the July days when the rapid flowering has passed and plant seeds begin to appear. Actually, there are no flowers in my beadwork, there are seed pods and berries, and the task to create them seemed particularly interesting.

Bead artwork by Liudmyla Heggland
click to enlarge

3. With what did you begin your beadwork?

With ideas! For me it is very important to express a certain sense in the work, not just assemble quality made elements.

4. What, in your opinion, is important in the creation of a beadwork for the competition?

As I said earlier, the idea. The work must necessarily be pleasing to the eye, and the composition as close as possible to the competent (I'm writing this is because many of the contestants have no art education, but have a great sense of composition). Carefully selected shades of colors, quality of workmanship, clear photos taken. And yes, I draw sketches of my future work because I find it easier to avoid mistakes.

Bead artwork by Liudmyla Heggland
click to enlarge

5. And what about quality materials?

Do you mean exclusively Japanese seed beads, Fireline, pretty expensive Swarovski crystals and natural gemstones? The purpose of the Fashion Colorworks, as far as I understand it, is to inspire participants to work in the recruitment of necessary color combinations and not the promotion of fashion materials. There are many other competitions, where the presence of beads and crystals of a certain brands is essential. But here everything is very democratic, create from what is at hand! This year and in past contests the winning pieces were designed with addition of pretty cheap beads and other materials, and what works they are! This proves that in the right hands beadworks can be made of any suitable material, creative growth is always possible! Though expensive beads of a certain brand can make creator's life easier, I don't argue.

Polymer clay jewelry by Liudmyla Heggland
click to see gallery

6. How to plan creative work having a baby?

Honestly - I don't know. I haven't done anything serious almost for a year because of the lack of large-scale time. Maternity leave in Norway is not more than a year, and I'm working with my baby now. I have made my July Hat by tiny pieces spending literally one minute a day, so that a clear schedule and plans didn't exist at all. It was a gamble, "Will I be able to manage? Will I bring a case to the end?" Reaching the final was already a great gift for me, and the prize caused tears to my eyes, "Hooray, I won!"

7. Doesn't the presence of a baby let you do craftwork?

Not at all! When I had no time and energy to do something by hands I took online workshops. So I studied some great techniques and now more ideas appeared for future beadworks. Thanks to remote training, it's a great opportunity to learn something new for people with small amount of free time or other limitations!

Polymer clay jewelry by Liudmyla Heggland
click to see gallery

8. In addition to beading, you do other kinds of crafts, what's happening there?

My recent and great love, sculpturing from polymer clay is "on vacation" now. When working with polymer clay, you have to have much more free time than 5-10 minutes every day, and it's now a huge and unattainable luxury for me. So I went back to my basics, to the beads, but I'm planning to learn soutache embroidery; it will expand my range of techniques and opportunities for self-expression.

9. What are your creative plans?

My dream is to implement more ideas that are reflected in my hefty notebooks with sketches, learn new things on a regular basis and improve the skills I already have.

10. Does it make sense to participate in contests? It's costly and requires a lot of time, and the chances of winning are very different?

I'm absolutely convinced that it is worth! Personally, I don't participate in contests to win prizes and, but for a great creative "kick." Plus it's kind of adrenaline and adventure, this is so wonderful! Sooner or later all your efforts will be paid off!

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About author:

Liudmyla Heggland, Rennesoy Island, Norway
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