What Is a “Moon Artist” and How Can You Become One?
“If you think of the moon, it does not shine its own light, it reflects the light of the sun.” This is what Andaiye Spencer says as she explains how she thinks of herself as an artist. “That light is brought to an area that would otherwise be dark. The moon becomes a source of light, even though it is not the maker of it.” Andaiye recognizes that by taking simple digital art, like clip art, and altering it into something unique, her version of art is like the moon. She is bringing light to creativity in a new way or place. She takes open-sourced digital art and tweaks it to be used to make laser cut wooden objects and jewelry for herself and others. “It can be empowering to take what is there and make it your own.”
Andaiye Spencer is known for wearing large wooden earrings, “It's sort of my signature piece,” she says. She has pairs upon pairs and jumped at a chance to learn to make them herself when TinkerTech offered a class on laser cut wood jewelry making right before the holidays last year.
“I was certified to use the laser cutter in November and ended up making earrings for myself in the class,” Andaiye explained. Before the year was over, she made personalized one of a kind jewelry as all of her Christmas gifts for friends and family.
Andaiye says she has made 138 pairs of earrings in the last 6 months.
She says the process is easy and perfect for people who are new to the art scene, or seasoned artists who have their own designs that they want to work with in a different way. She makes the art she wants into a digital image that can be utilized by the LightBurn design program. The wood is available for purchase at TinkerTech or can be picked up from any one of many hardware or craft stores in the areas. The machine does the work, then Andaiye takes the items home to do the finishing work, add paint, findings, and other personal touches.
She will be offering a Laser Cut Jewelry class this Wednesday, May 29th at 6:30 PM at TinkerTech. You can sign up here: http://bit.ly/laser_jewelry
The $30 class teaches the basics of how to cut and engrave on a laser cutter and sends you home with a pendant or pair of earrings that you designed.
Andaiye has made wooden notebooks and items for her classroom as well. She has designed an emotion board for students to share their feelings and superhero medallions for them to wear while they are helping out around the building, “Because that is a superhero job!” she explains.
Her work as a teacher has her feeling ready and excited for this, her first class in laser cut jewelry. She is looking forward to sharing her excitement for working with this medium and empowering other artists to learn the technique.
Andaiye has been working with wood since she was young. “My mom was a lay carpenter, and I worked as a professional scenic carpenter before becoming a teacher.” Andaiye says her mom inspired her to take the class: “My mom taught me if you love something so much you should learn how to make it so you do not have to rely on someone else to make it for you. Now I’m unstoppable and I can make anything I want.”