"I tend to keep my hands in motion by making small jewelry even if I don't have big ideas. By doing that, I think, something is accumulated little by little, at least a lot of jewelry."
Hello Hee-ang! Your artwork is a huge success in our community, and we are excited to have you a part of Polymer Week 2023! What would you like to share with your students during your class?
I'm excited to share my work process with those who are curious about it. I'm looking forward to seeing their reactions and hope that I can provide some useful insights, even in the limited time we have.
I'm looking forward to meeting other polymer clay artists and creators from various countries who will participate in the classes. Also, I think it will be a fresh experience for me to work in a new environment other than Korea
Do you think that students will be able to experiment with your technique and implement their own style into jewelry making?
Of course, participants can experiment with my technique and implement their own style into jewelry making, as long as they have the time and patience. It's not technically difficult, and by changing just one unit form in various ways, it's possible to create a completely different feel and style. There are many possibilities for modifications to suit their personal preferences.
Awesome! How did you discover polymer clay and why did it become part of your material portfolio?
When I took the theme of “mushrooms”, the part I wanted to express most was “wrinkles”. I observed mushrooms and realized polymer clay would perfectly reproduce the texture and shape. There are various types of polymer clay, and I chose one of them as a material for my jewelry because it is flexible and bends smoothly without being broken as a form of layers. That being said, expressing a variety of bonding methods and colors was also important, and polymer clay met all the criteria.
Your designs take on many unusual forms. Where does your inspiration come from?
My design starts with mushrooms. However, I am interested in not only mushrooms but also gradually growing forms and multiplying images of plants. Nature itself is a source of inspiration.
When and how did you decide to become a professional artist? Was it a difficult decision to make?
I had fun taking the last art jewelry class just before graduating from the undergraduate, and I thought I wanted to do more of it. I was graduating soon, so naturally I went to graduate school. While studying at graduate school, I decided to become a jeweler by looking at other jewelers and metalsmiths around me. Even though choosing the job meant I had to give up a stable income, it was not a difficult decision because being a jeweler offers some of the most important values for me. As time goes by, I am constantly surprised by how meaningful and profound this profession is.
And now you are a teacher as well! How would you describe your style of teaching and sharing knowledge?
When it comes to teaching, I explain the technical aspects and principles behind the results and then suggest various ways to develop them in terms of form. Then, I provide advice and support to each individual to help them create their own designs and forms. I think I can be especially helpful in terms of the functional aspects of jewelry.