Along the Way with Gloria Hood, Designer and Maker


Gloria Hood, Designer and Maker

Photo Credit: Gloria Hood

There are some people who live and breathe creativity so fluidly that it forces them to create by any means necessary. That kind of drive can also mean drastic risk-taking. Gloria Hood (aka Glorious Mettle), muse whisperer and artist, knows exactly what that’s like. On her blog, she shares a little corner of her own world, urging her readers (and surely other job-seekers and opportunists) to be “superexcellent” throughout the shared journey.

Your blog is so dynamic, reflecting a multitude of your creative interests. Surely you draw upon some artistic, professional experience in order to create the way that you do.

Long answer: time. That’s funny! Not that the question is funny but that I wasn’t “working” when I started blogging. Three years ago, I quit my job as an administrative assistant in a computer lab to pursue jewelry design. It has been a slow process to make it successful.

Last year a friend and former classmate called me up to participate in our alma mater’s International Festival. I was reluctant to attend knowing the time and funds it would take to have a successful booth. For whatever reason, I accepted the challenge. I had a feeling people would inquire about other items I might have for sale. I developed an online portfolio for anyone interested in my work. For all intents and purposes Gotham Collective (the jewelry blog) came before Glorious Mettle. Gotham Collective was out of necessity and Glorious Mettle came about since I had all these other artistic expressions I wanted to showcase.

It’s probably good to add that I have never had any extended formal artistic training. For two summers in high school, I took various classes at F.I.T. Fashion Institute of Technology and I took one art class at BMCC Borough of Manhattan Community College. Otherwise, I’m self-taught. I have mostly worked in the business field as an admin. Whenever a project required even a hint of creativity, it tapped at the longings of my muse. My inner artist was always dying to be released.

Yeah so if anyone’s interested in a quick learning design dynamo, come and get me.

There are four other categories under the makery page of your blog. You make fine art work, photography, and wearables.

My brain is about to pop with all the ideas flooding me as of late. My muse has a muse and they have daily parties…

Someday, I’d like to have an arts foundation. For the immediate future, I’d love to see Gotham Collective take off. There’s been a little buzzing going on so we’ll see. For the other areas, I’ll begin selling artwork as well. I’m very interested in freelance writing. Also–and you and I have discussed this recently–I’d like to share my resources. I know there are other people out there that may be venturing out into the creative sector and not sure where to start. I’m no expert but I think I have some things to share from my personal experiences. An example would be how I use free or low-cost editing tools for my graphics.

You’re constantly writing, which is why I could see freelance writing really working for you. You’re like a powerhouse. It gives a lot of meaning to your motto “driven to create by any means necessary.”

Thank you again. Oh, I think you’re looking at my work from NaBloPoMo – National Blog Posting Month. I didn’t post that much before that. However that experience left me with a desire to write more often.

Sometimes I ‘ll work from a draft post of ideas. Other times I’ve just had an encounter that begs to be fleshed out. I do think about how I want my audience to experience my posts. So there is a good amount of thought into the images and wording. However, I’m beginning to be a little less reserved with my writing. There comes a time when I get like a panther honing in on her prey; that’s my writing and creating flow. I’m in the moment and outside of myself simultaneously.

I can’t really say I’m thinking about where my blog is taking me since it’s really doing its own thing right now. I let the muse tell me what she wants me to do 🙂

Living that kind of inspired life has such a contagious effect upon others. I guess that’s why your blog gained so much traction with me and others.

Can you rehash another positive, perhaps inspiring experience that happened in your life?

I think some of this is on my blog. The end is a little sad, but it’s a good story. When I first saw the movie FAME, I knew I would go to that school. Living in New York, that school was La Guardia. I practiced regularly, singing in my bedroom mirror, in school during choral practice, in the bathroom, just about everywhere. I drove people crazy, and despite some negative feedback, I kept telling myself I was going to make it there. When it came to audition, I was waiting to be seen when I started talking to another applicant. She told me how many auditions she had lined up and asked be where I was headed after my vocal audition. I was more than a little embarrassed to say that was my only one but I told her anyway. She gave me the, “you poor thing, good luck” look then she smiled curtly. The conversation was pretty much done after that.

When I was called, my nerves where having a hoedown in my belly. Plans went out the window when they told me I had to sing a cappella. I’d practiced with a tape that I brought with me. They didn’t seem too impressed when I was done. Needless to say, I guess I rocked it because I got the acceptance call some weeks later. For silly reasons, I didn’t attend Fiorello H. La Guardia High School. I’ve never forgotten how good it felt knowing I made a dream come true. After all I told myself I would get in. I didn’t tell myself I would attend. Guess I should have been more specific.

Yeah, that’s quite bittersweet.

You say that you talk like Yoda sometimes.

Much wisdom comes from one so small and so green. Oh please indulge me a few from Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back…

“You must unlearn what you have learned.”
“No. Try not. Do…or do not. There is no try.”
“Mmmm.” Because no one says “mmmm” quite like Yoda.

I could also spend hours on your site, and I think that many others will be able to say the same.

What can we be on the lookout for from you, Gloria?

You know, it just kinda comes to me. It’s about what feels right for the piece I’m creating or will create. And by the way, thank you so much for appreciating the blog!

Ahh, I write the way I think, like right now. See what I’m doing? I’d type in giggles because I do that a lot but then you would see *giggles* *giggles again* all over the place. My mind is an almost non-stop thought parade. I have a zillion notes in my head and written down. When it’s time for me to apply an idea, I just grab it from wherever it’s been tucked away.

I hope to have the sites where I’ll be selling my work to you by the time you post this article. Otherwise, everyone should be on the lookout on my various social network platforms for announcements to when jewelry and artwork is available for purchase.


For more information on Gloria Hood, visit her blog. You can also connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

If you would like to be a part of the Along the Way series, you may send me an inquiry.


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