In 2008 I won the Natural Colored Diamond Jewels category in the Women’s Jewelry Association’s Diva Design Contest. That award was followed a few months later by a 2nd Place in the George A. Schuetz Men’s Jewelry Design Contest. Many of my friends were amazed and commented that I had “made it” …that I was racking up the awards non-stop. The behind-the-scenes truth is that I had entered each of those competitions twice in the two years prior to winning in 2008. I don’t think my earlier entries were any less imaginative or carefully worked out. The rendering above was one of the “reject” designs in 2006. I still like it even though it didn’t get the judges vote.
My advice to anyone wanting to move forward and get recognition? Keep loving what you do and keep putting yourself out there. The people who achieve success are ultimately the ones who pick themselves up and continue marching along towards their goals despite setbacks. If you need some more proof, take a look at these rejections received by the likes of Dr. Seuss, Oscar Wilde, Vladimir Nabokov and Stephen King, among others.