Finally! We have the full feature of our interview with Jennifer Scheffler of realia by jen! Sorry to keep you waiting, but I think it was worth the wait!
AS: Please give us a brief bio, where you are from and how you started in this field?
J: My name is Jen Scheffler and I am an educator, creator and a jewelry designer. I am from a small town in Minnesota called New Prague. I have dabbled in the arts ever since I could dabble! I have taken a variety of classes over the years in jewelry making and have figured out a number of things on my own.
AS: How would you describe your personal style?
J: I would describe my style as an eclectic mix of subtly sexy, revived vintage and Parisian-inspired.
AS: How would you describe the style of your work/art? How has this changed over time?
J: I would describe the style of my work as innovative and dynamic. I think that like all artists, their work changes over greater periods of time, and from moment to moment as well!
J: I was “that girl” in grade school…possibly even elementary school…you know the one?! The one that people wanted in their groups if there was going to be some sort of visual presentation required…kind of nerdy, but very outgoing. I could always make things look good by free handing my own big block letters. Even back then visual organization was something I loved and seemed to excel at.
J: I would say that I always knew it, but it took some time for me to accept it. For a long time, there was an internal battle between my desire to be constantly creating with no real outlet and the pragmatism of the every day grind of life. As with everything, I strive to find balance with this.
AS: What inspires you? How do you stay motivated?
J: I am inspired by so many different things – and I think that is what helps me stay motivated! I love helping people accessorize and creating pieces that hold a lot of sentimental value and can tell a story, whether past, present or future! Artistically I am very inspired by color and light. I love going to various exhibits and exploring paintings, photographs, music, movies and the history of all of the different cultures of the world.
AS: What is your creative process like?
J: Circular, cyclical……something like that. I see something, get inspired, sit down wherever I am and work away at it until something calls me away. Then I come back to it, tear it apart or add to it and at a certain point declare it done…enough!
J: Something that I wear every day and hold near and dear is my AIDS bracelet. It was given to my by my aunt who passed away from the virus in 1996. She was a very special person to me during some of the more formative years of my life. It reminds me of her and reminds me not to take things for granted.
AS: What do you find is the hardest part about your work?
J: Finding the time to get it all done! Isn’t that the case with any job worth having?!
J: I am the ever lovely juxtaposition of organized chaos! I am a “station” worker. I get started on something and if I don’t have creative flow I ditch it and move on to the next thing. If I have creative flow there, then away I go! Later, I will come back to all of the discarded “stations” and if I have creative flow at that point – work on it and if not, keep it moving!
AS: Any influences or anyone you look up to when it comes to your work?
J: Absolutely! I am a student of the world so I am constantly seeking to learn all aspects of my business from the design end to the flow charts and inventory spread sheets. I am also a student of human nature and love to travel and see the sights, eat the food and meet the people! I also love all things vintage. A few of my fashion icons include Coco Chanel, Alexander McQueen, Christian Dior & Anna Sui.
AS: If you weren’t creating (or designing) what would you be doing?
J: I would be in education. Growing up I was constantly playing teacher. I went on to get a Masters in Education. Hopefully some day I can join my two passions!
AS: Where do you see yourself in the next ten years either personally or artistically?
J: Creating new and dynamically innovative things!
J: With lots of support and consultation.
AS: Describe yourself in 5 words.
J: Witty, genuine, fast, focused and fun!
J: If you want to make money – make sure you have a business plan!