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Designer in the Spotlight  Sigrid Wynne-Evans
View Patterns  -  View Biography  -  e-mail  -  Web Site

 
Beaded Bear
La Belle Dame Sans Mercy Sir Galahad Britomart and Amoret Godspeed Two Crowns



 
Sigrid Wynne-Evans
by Sigrid Wynne-Evans     © February 2003

It is always difficult to write about yourself, but I will try since Rita insisted that I do. And besides, few people really know much of anything about me, so perhaps it is time for me to come out of my cave!
 
I was born in Germany, and emigrated to the US when I was only 1 year old. I grew up in Glens Falls NY (about 50 mi N of Albany). My very first love was music. I studied Classical Violin, and Alto Sax in college, and was a violinist in the Catskill Symphony. Unfortunately, an accident at a part time job put an end to my violin playing. My index finger of my left hand got mangled in a machine in a printing shop.
 
My next career led me to get a degree in Animal Husbandry with a specialization in Horses, and also a certificate from Colorado NW Community college in Horseshoeing. I worked at Saratoga Springs NY at the Harness Racetrack as a groom/assistant trainer, and did some blacksmith work on the side. It was an exciting job, until I realized it was something I did not want to do for a lifetime. That led me to yet another change.
 
After a degree in Medical Technology, I worked for the NY State Dept of Health. Again after 2 years, I realized that a 2 yr degree would not give me much hope for a decent salary. At that time, I was earning $9,000 per year, and supporting my then husband, and now my very young daughter Jasmine. We lived in the projects outside of Albany. It frightened me to think that Jasmine would grow up in such a rough environment. My marriage was less than happy. So I thought, if I were single what would I do?
 

Jasmine and Sig
Not long later, I had packed my belongings in 52 boxes, and brought them to Amtrack where I had bought one way tickets to CA, with the hopes of saving my marriage, going to school at UC Davis and a better future. I had $600 in my pocket, my first quarter paid, and one month of rent paid for our apartment on campus. I hoped that I would receive welfare to pay my rent, and food and I would scrape by with the rest. I figured that a short time of being on welfare was much better than a lifetime of partial assistance like I had in NY. Funny how the Welfare dept didn't see my point of view. Three months later, and some 4 denials later, we were eating out of dumpsters, on the verge of being homeless, and my grades suffered. But I had no choices, and I was determined. A month later, with the help of a very sympathetic welfare worker, I got my grant.
 
After getting my degree in Environmental Toxicology, I got a job with Federal OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration). And with a couple of twists and turns, I am now with the CA OSHA program, living in the Central Valley of CA. I have been working at this job for nearly 14 years. I investgate workplace health and safety complaints, accidents, and way too many fatalities.
 
Sig at Work
I am not married now, and Jasmine is now nearly 19. But I am not sorry for any of the choices I have made. They have all tought me something.
 
As for beading. I started beading right after Jasmine was born. It was always an escape and a much needed outlet for my creativity that the sciences never gave me. I started by teaching myself out of Deon DeLange¹s book, and several others. I took a few classes once I moved to CA, and basically just learned to play with beads and designs.
 
My very first design was the peacock earring that is in Designs By Sig Vol 1. It was inspired by an ad in the newspaper for a local restaraunt. Behind a couple enjoying a romatic dinner was a fabulous stained glass window of a peacock. I loved how it looked, and wondered if I could get a similar design into an earring. 4 hours later, the first earring was done! That design spurned on some 500 earring designs that I have (most never published).
 
My first books were done by the encouragement of a local beadstore. I packaged up 12 designs copied them and sold them in her store. 3 packets later, I decided to send them to Eagles View Publishing which led me to writing 3 books with them. (Earring Designs by Sig Vol 1-3)
 
An Earful of Designs was my first self published book. And now I have 10. My latest 5 is really a series of booklets: Knights in Shining Armor which is the first set in the "Phenomenal Patterns For Phenomenal Beaders" Series.
 
It is hard to say which I like better, designing or beading. But my passion now does seem to be with transforming the Classic Art into beads. There are so many wonderful paintings, I would like to do them all. With each painting I graph, I learn something about design. And with each one I do, I wonder if I can actually do it. Presently, I am working on a custom chart of a painting for a customer who wants the bead chart to be 30 X 20 inches in peyote!!! I can't wait to see that one done up, it will be spectacular!!
 
I invite you to visit my website. Steve, who has now been part of my life for nearly 3 years, is my webmaster. He does a terrific job, and is so wonderfuly supportive. While he doesnt understand beading, he does understand how to cheer me up during the times when I think I can't do anything right.
 
Steve and Sig
My goals for the next few years, are to continue designing, publish more books, and maybe even venture out on the teaching circuit again. That way, I can meet some of you!
 
If I were to give advice, it would be simply this: Find something that you can be passionate about. Give it everything you have. Also, do not allow the desire for perfection to get in the way. Perfection is never attainable. While you should never settle for mediocrity, you also need to know when to let go, and move on so that you can learn even more. Refuse to give up. If I had given up all those years ago, I would still be living in the projects back in NY!!!
 



Sigrid Wynne-Evans
View Patterns  -  View Biography  -  e-mail  -  Web Site

 
 
 

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