So excited: Creative Jewelry 2011 magazine featured a necklace that I designed! (Check it out – p.31 – available on newsstands now.) I’m so happy, and so terribly proud, that I’ve been skipping around my house.


Publication* is something I’ve been working toward for a while now and I’m really excited about this first little feature. (I also had a pair of earrings featured in Stringing Magazine Fall 2011, but that was a VERY little feature. I mean it: they’re literally the smallest pair of earrings on the whole page.) I think I’ll submit more pieces to magazines in the future and someday (someday) I hope to publish the books that I’ve been thinking about writing for the last several years. Brilliant, beautiful books of needlepoint patterns and knitting projects. Sigh. Someday.

To celebrate this most-momentous event in my jewelry making life, I’m having a 20% off Sale on everything in my etsy shop. Click here: Handmade by Anne Potter and enter coupon code PUBLISHED20 at checkout for 20% off your total. Sale ends September 29th.


*Around the UI English department, the ominous phrase “Publish or Perish” hung heavy in the halls. It was the academic equivalent of “put up or shut up”: a deadline of legitimacy, and currency. If a doctoral student doesn’t have their paper published in a journal or publication, they have not yet proven that their voice is valid. I’ve thought about this concept a lot lately. Not to sound like the ponderous Carrie Bradshaw, laptopping her pointed questions to the world, but:

Can we call ourselves artists if we have no audience?

If art is an expression, is it completed by an ear that hears it? Can we create and produce in the privacy of our homes and make art? I think of Emily Dickinson: if her poems were never found and published, would she still be a poet? I don’t know the answer. I love Mary Engelbreit, an American artist and media empress, for empowering the “home” artist. The knitters, the dollmakers, the doodlers, the creative souls that create at home in their space. She knocked the polish off what we consider an “artist” to look like, and elevated us humble home artists for what we make and how. I think she would define art by its creative process and product. In part I agree: the feisty independent in me bucks the notion that an artist needs an audience. Surely an audience doesn’t define what we create.

But does an audience complete “art”? Or just call it what it is?