It’s the end of the month which means that it’s time we update our customers on the latest news in Gemvision®. As previously announced, Gemvision will be presenting many new releases throughout the month of August. Let me go through them one by one to give you a brief overview of what you can expect.
The Gemvision Forum Is Back!
Yes, we know many of our customers were eager to have the forum return, so here we are. If you have a MatrixGold® or CounterSketch® license, you may now request access at GemvisionForum.com, and we will be more than happy to welcome you into our community. We will continue to work on this forum, as we want it to be where all the MatrixGold and CounterSketch users can discuss and meet. However, users looking for support from the Gemvision site will still have to get in touch with our support lines.
Our Marketing and UX Team have been working to create a more intuitive website. This website will not only just be easier to navigate through but will also have a redesigned user’s area. This space will simplify finding all the information related to licenses, installers, and subscriptions.
We will be releasing a new update for CounterSketch Streaming. CounterSketch Streaming is an option that is becoming more and more popular. The reasons being that it can be launched from any computer that has a stable connection to the internet and because it’s based on a subscription service, which makes it easier to acquire. With this new release, CounterSketch Streaming will be able to import and use .3dm and .csg files. Users will be able to download the realistic renders that were taken in CounterSketch.
MatrixGold will be released and officially running on the Rhino7 software. This means that we will be adapting the new Rhino7 functionalities as the Quadremesh and the SubD to MatrixGold. On top of this, we have made improvements, like calculating the parametric tree once you validate the command. This will improve the speed when using the parametric. Customers were also asking to be able to select the stones from the gem report tab. This is something that MatrixGold users will now be able to do.
As you can see, a lot is happening at Gemvision. So, make sure to stay tuned on our digital channels to be the first ones to know!
Gemvision Looks Ahead to JCK Las Vegas
Summertime is here, and that means it’s time for JCK. This year due to COVID, JCK will happen late in August.
We like to announce good news at JCK because we meet with so many of our customers and get their feedback about the new releases.
In the last months, Gemvision has worked on different fronts. I’ll review them one by one, so you can get an idea of what we’ll present at JCK.
We have been working to adapt MatrixGold to the new Rhino7. After a BETA period, we can now release the official version of MatrixGold on Rhino 7.
This new version brings the robust QuadRemesh algorithm that creates a beautiful quad mesh from NURBS geometry or meshes. With this new feature, you can upload STL’s in MatrixGold and create a SUB D geometry on top of it. Once you create the geometry, you can edit any part of it.
We’ve also added new models to the Clayoo library, offering you more starting points when modeling.
And we’ve adapted the new render engine to MatrixGold, giving you the Denoiser option. This adaptation makes renders faster than on Rhino6 — in fact, faster than ever!
We also have news on CounterSketch Streaming, the subscription option Gemvision offers.
CounterSketch Streaming users will now have the option to import files within CounterSketch and export any renders they create from their models. This new feature will allow them to share their designs on any digital channel — and we all know how important is this, right?
On top of this news, we’ll also present our new website and the New Gemvision Forum!!!!
The Gemvision Forum is something that many customers have been asking for a while. We are aware that we serve a great community, and we hope that the forum will be the right place where everyone can meet and share their experiences about our software.
As you can imagine, we are excited to fly to JCK and hope you can attend too.
We look forward to meeting with you to discuss Gemvision’s advances and the many ways they’ll help you work more efficiently and creatively.
The 2021 Gemvision® Virtual Summit
Join us for the 2021 Virtual Summit on June 14 – 18, 2021, hosted by Gemvision. Each session will help you to uncover emerging trends and learn about the best practices from leading jewelry experts. It truly is a learning experience for beginner and expert jewelers. These training sessions will allow you to educate yourself on many topics, including:
Uncover Trends for a Sustainable Business Strategy
There is a digital transformation in the jewelry industry that has business owners rethinking their long-term strategies. The dilemma comes from innovative technology that is changing the way most retailers are running their business.
Stay up to date with industry trends, learn about consumer buying habits, and discover Stuller’s digital solutions that will help grow your business.
Discover the Benefit of 3D Manufacturing
New manufacturing technologies create a positive break in the jewelry industry while broadening the horizon for skilled designers and jewelers. As the industry becomes more familiar with 3D printing, it increases the jewelry makers’ desire to adopt this technology.
Discover the benefits of 3D manufacturing in the jewelry-making division. Gemvision specialists will discuss the process of taking a design in MatrixGold® through to 3D printing and manufacturing.
Start Learning by Doing
If you are looking to keep a competitive advantage in today’s fast-paced environment, new training programs are available for you to learn at your own pace. These personalized experiences are popular because they offer real-time interactions with educators who can provide immediate feedback.
Explore Gemvision’s training programs and listen to successful customer stories that have helped increase company efficiency and productivity, thanks to our learning solutions.
CounterSketch®: The All-in-One Tool for Jewelers
The digital era has enabled today’s customers to have the freedom to shop anything, anytime, and anywhere. As a result, jewelers need to reinvent their traditional business models by adopting innovative technologies to engage with customers, regardless of how they shop.
Discover how CounterSketch, an intuitive and all-in-one digital tool, can be used to co-create custom designs with customers, whether they are at your side or across the country. Prepare yourself to succeed with Stuller’s CAD/CAM services.
Worldwide Jewelry Design Styles Using MatrixGold
Expand your jewelry design knowledge by learning from the MatrixGold instructors, Oriol Collelldemont, Mehmet Pekin, and Michele Turco. They will teach you the best design practices and techniques to achieve representative jewelry styles worldwide.
Discover the flexibility and power of MatrixGold’s parametric engine and dynamic commands through the design process. Continue to learn tips and tricks that allow you to boost productivity, save time, and be more efficient.
Do not miss out on this excellent opportunity to be inspired by leading keynote speakers, innovative ideas, and actionable insights to enhance your business right away. Each of the sessions is conducted via Zoom and lasts for 60 minutes. Attendees who participate in an entire session will receive 5% off their next software purchase* on Stuller.com.
*Excludes recurrent payments and training.
MatrixGold Brings Motorcycle Design to Life
David Hill is a custom jewelry designer for Coin and Jewelry Gallery in Gainesville, Florida. Open since 1981, Coin and Jewelry Gallery provides a wide variety of repair services and custom designs.
To David, offering custom design has become the most profitable part of his jewelry business. MatrixGold®, the CAD Jewelry Software he uses, has made it incredibly easy to show his wholesale customers exactly what they will get before production, allowing him to close more sales faster.
“MatrixGold achieves the best bespoke jewelry design, getting guidance from Gemvision training instructors.”
David James Designs
David understands that gaining the proper skills to lead complex projects is critical when offering high-quality service to his customers, so he relies on the Gemvision educational team to receive personal training assistance when he needs it.
We discuss with David to uncover how the Gemvision One-on-One training sessions helped him pull off a complex custom design job and improved his design skills.
Q&A With David Hill
How was your learning experience with the Gemvision training instructor?
Jessica Smith was my instructor for my original training sessions and was fantastic. She was thorough and also helped explain some more advanced modeling techniques when completing the regular curriculum. She took the time to make some videos explaining exactly how to model the motorcycle project, which has increased my modeling ability immensely and helped me figure out other jobs.
Did you accomplish your goals taking the One-on-One training session?
Absolutely! I was able to complete the custom design project and, again, also further my modeling capabilities.
What do you think about the teaching approach?
One-on-One training is always excellent. The screen sharing is very helpful too. It can see exactly what the instructor is doing, and she knows whether I’m doing something correctly or incorrectly, addressing it immediately.
What do you think is the main benefit of taking the One-on–One training sessions?
Being able to move at your own pace and not get bored or feel pressured to keep up with others. I had never used any 3D modeling software, and it was effortless to learn with one-on-one training.
What improvements would you recommend to the one-on-one training sessions?
Honestly, I cannot think of anything.
Diamond-Studded Steel Horse
David created this motorcycle design using MatrixGold. “This was definitely the most involved project I’ve ever done. I set over 500 individual white and black diamonds in the headlight and wheels. It weighed almost 80 grams and was about 4” long when completed. And yes the wheels spin!”
As we wrap up April and move “full steam ahead” to the Summer months, MatrixGold® users are enjoying several new improvements. Two new updates came out in March and it’s already helping jewelers better serve their customers.
We have improved the batch render feature. It is a tool that many customers are using when it’s time to render different versions of the same model. We added JPG, BMP, and PNG as outputs, and the option to render using the Alpha Materials option. This option is also used to render using style, files, layers and materials.
We know that presenting designs to the customer is important and we are always working on our render engine to better serve you. In the last update we added the focal blur feature to the render, which will allow you to produce renders that look as professional as possible.
We have also been working on the materials the option to set up a customer’s own specific gravity for the materials. This is very important when is time to be very precise with the weight. So, from now on you can change the color and the specific gravity and save them in your materials area. From there, it can be picked up at any given time.
When it is time to get your designs ready to print, we know that mesh repair plays a fundamental part of the process. So, we have increased the effectivity of this tool. Now we the surface step-by-step, so you get the greatest chance of working with a valid mesh.
These are some (but not all) of the improvements that we have been working on. We have also improved the head, the prongs on surface, the gems between two curves.
If you want more information about MatrixGold® and solutions for your custom jewelry needs, visit Stuller.com/MatrixGold.
(M)engagement Rings: New Trend for Engaged Men
In the United States, tradition has been that the man provides his fiancé with an engagement ring to symbolize their intent to be married to society. However, times change, and younger generations find new ways to evolve the wedding industry in exciting ways. The latest trend that is beginning to reach America from Europe is an engagement ring meant for men. Enter the “mengagement ring.”
Let’s dive into this trend and see how it has developed. Then, as your trusted jewelry resource, we will provide some insight so you can answer questions your customers have regarding picking out their own men’s engagement ring.
Mengagement Ring: New Trend or Newly Successful?
Believe it or not, the concept of men wearing engagement rings is not that new. Cultures around the world have integrated the men’s engagement ring over the ages into their own wedding traditions. For example, in Chile, both men and women wear engagement rings; however, they wear them on their right hand and move them to their left on their wedding day. In Argentina, couples exchange their rings at the engagement, not the wedding. In Sweden and other Nordic countries, both men and women exchange a simple gold or silver band at their engagement.
Fun Fact: Even in America, jewelers attempted to market engagement rings to men in the 1920s. While that sales strategy proved to be unsuccessful at that time, men eventually did adopt the wedding band a few decades later.
The trend of western civilization adopting an engagement ring for men was first seen in 2009 in the United Kingdom. A jeweler named H. Samuel introduced the “Tioro” – a wide band with a single small diamond meant specifically as an engagement ring for men. While this ring has been primarily used as a wedding ring, the trend has started to take hold over the last decade.
Fun Fact: According to Ritani in 2020, 1 in 20 women propose to their fiancés.
With the rise of many couples being more concerned with equality and men in America being more comfortable with wearing jewelry, both men and women have taken to wearing engagement rings to show their matching love and commitment. Prominent examples of men donning an engagement ring include Johnny Depp, David Otunga, Ed Sheeran, and Michael Buble.
Regardless of the reasons or motivations, that fact is that more men or their partners will be looking into engagement rings in the coming years. When the time comes, be prepared by knowing what questions to ask so you can be your customers’ guide at the start of their marriage journey.
The Initial Conversation
Because there is no set tradition for this trend, you may have the future groom discussing a ring he envisions for himself or you may have his future fiancé looking to surprise him. Either way, get to know his tastes and jewelry habits at the start so you know which styles to suggest.
The groom-to-be may want to stack an engagement ring and wedding band on one finger, they may wear the engagement ring on one finger and the wedding band on another, they may only choose to wear the one ring, etc. Knowing how he might plan on wearing his engagement ring will help make the following decisions.
Men’s bands tend to have a greater width. However, if they intend on having an engagement band and a wedding band on the same finger, it would be better to suggest a thinner ring. Wider bands are more typical for men, but it depends on what is most comfortable for him. Compare other rings he may wear to get an idea of what width he prefers.
While style preference is a major factor in choosing metal, also have a conversation on how physically active he is. Gold is a classic metal choice with many design options available; however, a man that needs a more durable ring for work and vigorous activity should look at platinum or a strong contemporary metal, such as cobalt or tantalum.
Just like women’s engagement rings, the style and design possibilities are endless. Men with simple or traditional tastes might prefer a classic gold band. Customize with a personalized engraving and make it the perfect ring to symbolize his love and commitment. Men looking for sleek and modern pieces have several options in terms of design, including artistic finishes, inlays, two-toned metals, and stones. Getting to know fashion preferences and activity levels will help you guide your customer to the right ring.
While there are countless men’s wedding band designs out there that work perfectly for a man’s engagement ring, this new jewelry trend might deserve a more tailored approach. Consider working with your customer on creating an engagement ring that is 100% unique to him. Design it yourself using our jewelry design software, MatrixGold® or CounterSketch®, then submit your design to our CAD/CAM Services team to make their dream a reality. We even create wax models so you can show your customer exactly what they are getting. This is a special moment in their life and you can make it a memorable one.
Are You Sold on Men’s Engagement Rings?
For many jewelers, this trend is definitely outside of the ordinary. However, it is important to stay on top of the industry’s trends so you can best serve your customers. Men will continue to be more comfortable going outside the box and wearing the jewelry they like. We know you will continue to provide the best service to your customers, and Stuller will continue to be your partner in business for all your jewelry needs.
For more resources on men’s jewelry fashion, check out these blog posts!
Sell Online With The Help of Gemvision Custom Designs
Do you know that eCommerce has grown by 15% year- over year? In the jewelry industry, that number is even higher- 23%. We keep those stats in mind day after day at Gemvision. And because our main purpose is to help jewelers on the digital age, we keep working on providing as many tools as we can to make things even easier for our customers.
For many years, our customers have been looking to provide the best experience to the end consumer, but what happens when these end consumers want to buy online? Our duty is to offer solutions to these challenges. Jewelers needs tools to create jewelry from sketched and at the same time show all these creations on their online channels.
The answer… MatrixGold
With MatrixGold, you can create any design from sketches and now with the new update released this month, we have made major strides on digital renders. You can read a list of improvements available now and one of the highlights is the new batch render feature.
The new Batch Render is a new tool that allows you to load all the models that you want to render. You can apply materials, environments and select what views do you want to render. Once all these settings are applied, you just need to click the button “render” and MatrixGold will do everything else by itself.
MatrixGold will do all the combinations between models, materials and views and will save them to your computer. The extra step of waiting for the renders to be finished until launching the next one is no more. MatrixGold will do it for you.
Batch Render In Action
These renders can be posted online for you to sell without spending a penny to have them made for display. This makes eCommerce easy and allows you to create one-of-a-kind pieces for your one-of-a-kind customers.
Users of Matrix, a prior Gemvision product, often ask us about switching from Matrix to MatrixGold®, our newest software.
“The path to change is best traveled when we travel together.”
In the spirit of this quote, we sought out a Matrix user who would partner with us to create educational videos about transitioning to MatrixGold from the user’s perspective. Donna Kovalchick was the ideal customer to feature.
Meet Donna Kovalchick
A photographer by trade with 21 years of experience, Donna followed a unique path that led her to jewelry. What started as a part-time position as a photographer for a local jewelry store and helping with the website and marketing turned into so much more.
Years later, the business had grown, and the owner wanted to hire an in-house CAD designer. Donna was offered the role, and she jumped on the opportunity to learn something new. Next thing she knew, she was on a plane to Stuller’s headquarters to learn Matrix 9 from Jessica Smith, Gemvision’s training developer and instructor.
That was three-and-a-half years ago. As Donna recalls, “Learning the program was exciting. I did learn it pretty easily, and it was quite addictive.”
The Big Transition
Donna recently switched from Matrix to MatrixGold and described it as a game-changer, commenting on how the updates make her life as a designer easier. She has moved on from the small business jewelry store where she first started her career in CAD, saying, “I have realized my self-worth and that I love CAD. One-of-a-kind jewelry excites everyone, and I love being a part of that.”
As Donna begins the next chapter in her career, she is confident MatrixGold will further her interest and expertise in custom design.
Watch a video interview with Donna below:
To watch the full-length videos, login to MatrixGold Academy and go to the Designing with Donna tile. She is always looking for topics and loves suggestions from other users!
Want to hear more about MatrixGold? See more of our blog posts that share new features and customer experiences.
You get the weight, dimensions, and stone report on the final piece, which reduces haggling and helps you work within your customer’s budget.
You can create realistic renders and animations of the piece to WOW your customer. These renders and animations are also great for using in your social media marketing, on your website, and in your design portfolio.
Create an Experience: CounterSketch®
We know that any retailer wants to offer as many models as they can, but it’s impossible to stock all the options that customers may be looking for. With CounterSketch, you get hundreds of library designs that are ready to show to your customer and to be modified to their needs.
CounterSketch is perfect for inviting customers into the customization process. Whether they’re at your side or joining you remotely, they can watch you design their piece. You can make their requested changes with just a few clicks, and the design will update right before their eyes.
In CounterSketch, you can use and assemble freehand parts to create one-of-a-kind designs.
Once the design is done, you submit it to the team at Stuller. Our CAD/CAM Services handles the manufacturing and will deliver the piece to you at the manufacturing level you need: finished or unfinished, and set, semi-set, or unset.
Do you want to create your own designs and have them ready and in stock? Bring MatrixGold and CounterSketch together for your business!
You can design in MatrixGold and then import those designs to CounterSketch. Once you have them in CounterSketch, it’s easy to show all your designs to your customers.
From there, you can show your designs from any perspective, change materials, make realistic renders, price them, and send them to Stuller for manufacturing. While we do the heavy lifting, you can keep serving your customers.
Watch one of our designers use MatrixGold and CounterSketch to create a pair of intricate earrings:
At Gemvision, we offer all the tools you need to make your customers feel like the most important person in the world. You can proudly advertise that you can make custom-designed jewelry to be delivered in time for the holiday season. Offer them nothing less than the best with CounterSketch and MatrixGold.
For more information about MatrixGold, CounterSketch, and how they can benefit your business, take a look at these recent blog posts.
Have any of you ever renovated your kitchen, or taken a precious family photo to be framed? Our homes and family heirlooms are important to us, and we don’t trust them to just anyone. We are looking for a contractor or framer that approaches their tools with skill and assurance. What if the framer puts on gloves before handling your photo, or the contractor comments on an essential aspect of the project that you never considered? How would you feel about proceeding with the project?
As Jewelers, our reputation is essential to our business. Customers must feel that they can trust us to complete their job confidently. Be sure that you and your staff are well trained and certain in using the tools of our trade. Your confidence will not only put customers at ease, but your ability to speak with conviction, clarity, and sincerity may be the key to closing the sale. Lots of industries, including doctors, pharmacists, and even tax accounts, do annual recurrent training. This training ensures that their skills are up to date and that they are aware of the latest and most significant advancements.
CounterSketch Artisan Certification Curriculum: This series of 25 lessons, each with an accompanying quiz, will teach your staff everything they need to know about using CounterSketch with a customer. Once they complete all the classes and tests, they receive a CounterSketch Artisan Certification that they can print and frame and attach to their linked in profile.
Watch Me Work: This series walks the student through building 14 on-trend unique designs, giving them the confidence to not only make these designs but other designs using freehand parts.
Freehand Faceoff Vol.1-6: Given a theme, two designers go head to head to create unique designs. This fun yet challenging approach pushes your staff to think outside the box and imagine new ways of using existing tools and freehand parts.
MatrixGold Artisan Curriculum: This series of 27 lessons will teach your staff everything they need to know about using MatrixGold. Including designing solitaires, eternity bands, five stone rings, and even cabochon pendants. This introductory class is a great starting point for any designers that are new to MatrixGold.
Matrix 9 to MatrixGold Conversion: This extensive course covers lessons on the user interface, user preferences, content management, modeling, profile editors, rendering, and much more. If you have been working in Matrix 9 and are ready to upgrade to MatrixGold, we have an online learning plan to help you with the transition.
Summer 2020 Update: As our development team continues to add and refine the tools in MatrixGold, you can expect great things. We separate videos for recently added features so that as you continue to learn, you can focus on what is new without having to review existing tools. This 11 lesson module teaches you to use the latest tools added to MatrixGold.
With these options and many more, there is valuable content for you and your staff to explore on Gemvision’s online training platforms. However, if you are looking for one-on-one training experience, we are happy to offer hourly training with our Gemvision training team as well. We are here to support you and your staff as you provide unparalleled service to your customers.