A new way of working
Organic, impulsive, unintended, spontaneous – that’s how I normally approach my work and pretty much most things I do.
I don’t spend a lot of time pre-planning or thinking I just dive in and see what happens. The first step is always the hardest. In both aspects of my work, my jewellery and painting, when I am faced with a blank canvas or bare piece of straight wire it’s then that I feel the most vulnerable. If it’s wire I’ll just bend it, if its a canvas I just get the biggest brush I have and make my first mark. If it’s wrong it can be redone, the point for me is just to start.
My latest wire work piece started in this manner but once the first line was in place I became very determined to work with symmetry and precision. This is unusual for me, but I actually enjoyed the challenge and clarity of what I was trying to achieve. The result was this antique style necklace that I’ve decided to call ‘Grace’.
This necklace sold in record time and received the highest hits on my Facebook page since I made ‘Boudicca’. I was quite taken a back. Naturally, every artist feeds off positive feedback and comments so my immediate response was to make something similar again, to try master the technique of making symmetrical designs. I wonder how other jewellers would respond to this? Does one make to please oneself, or to please others?
I now have two free days to create more work and at least for now have managed to balance my working life and creative time better. I’m just going to see what evolves next!
Well, I’m definitely on a roll with the jewellery making and I’m pleased to be back blogging too. My first week back at work was exhausting, I don’t think my feet touched the floor for three whole days! I’ve still managed to make some new pieces during the week and my new Venus necklace was the first.
The soft neutral gemstone deserved a design that complimented it’s delicate nature so using finer gauge wire that what I’m used to I created this woven asymmetrical piece. Deciding on a name wasn’t difficult as the smokey yet fiery warm hues of the circular stone reminded me of the colours of the planet Venus. The stones milky colours were evocative of the permanent cloud cover and dense atmosphere over the planet. Not knowing a great deal about the planet I looked it up. It’s amazing how jewellery making teaches you other stuff at the same time! I thought I would share three interesting basic facts about Venus:
The planet was named after the Roman Goddess of Love and it is the brightest natural object in the night sky after the moon.
It is often called Earth’s Sister – due to it’s similarity in size, mass and rocky body structure.
It is one of four terrestrial planets in our solar system and is by far the hottest. The surface of Venus is often described as hellish. This temperature is higher than temperatures used to achieve sterilization.
I can’t believe it’s September already and whilst on the bus through the suburbs today I was studying all the trees on route, admiring the Horse Chestnuts hanging heavy with ripe conkers, their leaves tinged with yellow edges. The Sycamores with their delicate seeds waiting to disperse in the wind. It was apparent that Autumn wasn’t far away.
My thoughts took me back to my own childhood days and the stories my partner would share with me about his childhood. He still keeps his prize winning conker that is attached firmly to a white shoe lace in amongst his box of treasures and memories. I remember collecting Beech Nuts off the autumn floor with my friend Gabriella, which we would scoff and enjoy at school break times. I still don’t know if they were meant to be eaten, but we certainly ate bucket loads and are still here to tell the tale! At the weekends we played for hours in her garden den making perfume from rose petals and other such delicate flower parts. As a child of the 70’s I enjoyed such simple and naive pass times without today’s modern technology and gadgetry.
The cold breeze of late August and the onset of Autumn has had me reaching for my darker and warmer clothing and has toned down my general choice of colour palette. While rummaging through my bead tray I found a beautiful large stone that had mauve, indigo and grey hues to it. It’s always been a favourite but I never quite knew what to do with it. I believe it is a Dragon Vein stone of some kind but can’t be sure exactly.
This bracelet is my latest piece and is a homage to Nordic and Scandinavian winters with the beautiful soft grey gemstone as it’s focal….
The summer holidays were so romantic. My partner and I spent two weeks off work together; we talked, travelled places, explored new cities, laughed aloud and watched movies. I’ve missed him in the stresses and strains of everyday working life. No wonder I felt compelled to create this magical head dress even though we have no plans to marry ( as far as I know!). I think this piece would look beautiful on an Elven or Faerie bride.
The necklace and head dress ( it works as both) comes complete with iridescent Opalite teardrop stones that hang and glisten against the skin. I also used Unakite and Aquamarine keeping the colours neutral against the copper.