One of the Babes: Marlena Jarjoura
Local boss Marlena Jarjoura has always been a creative.
First, she was a writer.
Then, she added "artist" and "musician" to her resume.
Now, she's got jewelry-making under her belt.
Marlena Jarjoura's intricate wire-wrapped pendants feature gems and healing stones, unique to the person wearing them, and we're happy to announce she'll have some for purchase at our September meet!
Learn more about Marlena's journey as a maker:
Q: What inspired you to start working in design and jewelry-making? Did you have any role models or learn from someone, in particular?
A: I’ve been creating art for as long as I can remember, starting with writing songs and poems when I was 8, becoming a musician at 14, being accepted into the Gifted Arts program at my high school and taking art classes in college. Somehow, I always knew that I would eventually design and create jewelry—I just didn’t know when or how. I’ve also always had a great rock/crystal collection and back a couple of years ago, I began to see wire-wrapped jewelry which offered people a chance to actually wear their special healing stones. I was hooked and looked up some YouTube videos, and took one lesson from a woman that a friend told me about. I caught on fairly quickly and have been creating ever since!
Q: Do you have any tidbits of advice for people with passions, in general?
A: My advice is to carve out time for your passions. So often, we get one foot in the rat race and before we know it, we’re covered in fur, trying to get out of an impossible maze. As cheesy as it is, this life is the only one we have, so make it the best! I find that most people with passions have no choice but to pursue them, otherwise, it’s just imagination or fantasy. Anyone can have a dream, but to execute your ideas takes courage, time, patience and will.
Q: What have been your favorite moments of creativity?
A: I’ve never been a big fan of favorites. Life is too “flowy” to try and capture it in some container. I love to work outside, whether that’s making jewelry or playing music, or just sitting in silence. Mother Earth is my home, and inside her sweet embrace is where I feel the safest and most comfortable. When I feel safe and calm, I’m able to really latch onto the creative flow and ride the waves.
Q:. What have been your most challenging moments in your career, thus far?
A: The challenging moments are those days when you vend at an event for HOURS and never sell one piece of jewelry. It’s those days that make me wonder why I even try, but I usually bring my supplies and try to work, so that I’m not totally wasting my time. And it’s great to make sweet connections with other vendors.
Q: What's your day job (if this business isn't your day job)?
A: This is my day job!
Q: When you're discouraged, what do you run to or away from?
A: When I get discouraged, I turn inward and upward. I try and be gentle with myself and realize that life is just a series of moments, and if the present moment feels discouraging, there’s comfort in knowing that it will be over soon. I don’t make art if I don’t feel like it. I allow myself to rest when my body and mind need rest, play when I need to have fun, and work when I feel like working. I find that the discouragement passes, and I’m as fresh as the rain again!
Your favorite band at the moment: I’m glad the “at the moment” part is here! I always love Neil Young. I’ve got a few of his records, and they make me happy every time I put one on.
Your favorite book at the moment: I just finished a book from the 80’s called "Transformers, The Artists of Self Creation." It was great!
Your local Austin gem (can be a product, place, etc.): I love the Greenbelt!