I’ve been enjoying reading Malcolm Gladwell’s newest book, Outliers -The Story of Success. In this book, Mr. Gladwell examines what lies behind success and looks far beyond the usual perception of successful people as merely products of luck, talent, and ambition. He shows how an individual’s environment, background, sometimes birth year/birthplace, and opportunity, all play significant roles in determining their chances for success, in addition to their having natural intelligence, aptitude and talent. More importantly, he concludes, no one has become successful or an expert in their field without a minimum of 10,000 hours of practice. Experts agree. Michael Bondanza, a wonderful jeweler says, “It takes at least ten years to get grounded, to gain enough skill and experience to begin to tackle something with real meaning”.
I would add that dedicating that kind of time to one’s craft isn’t possible without possessing true love and passion for it.
While I’m not sure how close I am to reaching the 10,000 hour mark as a jewelry designer, I did come across this earring “rendering” I did when I was 16 and have put it side by side with a rendering I did in 2006 shortly after having attended the GIA Quick Design Lab in NY.