Its a phase… the Art Elements moon theme reveal.

Welcome to the first theme challenge of the year! And the first blog post of the year – a habit I plan to revive…

This month Lindsay selected the Moon as our inspiration. The moon is frequently my inspiration! I rifled through my stash and pulled out a few moon and crescent pieces:

1.Diane Hawkey 2. me 3.Nikki Thornburg and Lesley Watt 4.Staci Smith 5.Lesley 6.my stash 7-9. me 10. Caroline Dewison. 11. Lisa Peters Russ. 12. Anne Gardanne

I was completely overwhelmed. So I turned to something completely different. Laney Mead gifted me with the most adorable lamp work hare! ( It was Secret Santa a year or so ago.) Since he arrived, he has been living on my beading table in a wee tiny wooden box – waiting for assemblage! SO here he is – my lunar hare !

Now he is sitting on my desk as I write this!

Back in the studio – I have been missing metal. Last year was fraught with challenges, both personal and professional. I made work show by show… This year I am focusing on what really speaks to my heart. SO I plan to incorporate more metal. This piece is still a WIP – the sterling hare needs tumbling. The faux bone needs antiquing maybe?

Faux bone – heated, stamped, painted, sanded. It will tolerate anything!

Linoleum printmaking is also on the 2019 want-to-do list. I plan to have limited edition cards featuring motifs that are showcased in my ceramic pendants and tiles. But as a warm up? Moon phase stamps for my art journal!

So all was gong along rather nicely – until Lindsay there me the BEST curve ball! She surprised me with a few leather pieces and some vintage treasures! ( I sent her something for this month’s give away.) These pieces are drawn/sculpted/painted by her friend  – and I for one think they are fabulous. The moon over the (iridescent) water makes me so happy! 

But you know which one I started with, don’t you? And then I found this mini star cab that Sue made… There may have been a snow squall – but I was happily beading!  I think it will be a lapel pin for my winter coat…

Beaded lunar hare – in progress.

Thank you so much for reading my ramblings. Please take a look at the creation from my team mates at AE and our guests this month! And stay tune here for a resuscitated blog!

Guests:
Art Elements Crew:

Surfacing: the Art Elements “tidepool” theme challenge

This month I dove into the theme late. I had been away for many weeks, and I am doing my grief work after losing my mother. I relished the chance to dive into the beads, to busy my hands and still my mind a bit.

Lesley selected the theme “Tide pool” and it is  – as these themes can be – so rich that it was hard to narrow my ideas down to one piece. My first ever tide pool experience was in La Jolla CA on vacation with my husband before we relocated there. I was enchanted by the calm encapsulated worlds amidst the rocks and tumultuous spray.

My plan was influenced by the enameled fish I received from Anne at Gardanne Beads. While it takes my pieces from tide pool to ocean – I feel both worlds are represented…

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My teaser sketch – after I had selected artisan beads.

The preliminary stages had me stitching on the densely encrusted tide pool items at the bottom of the 3″ square. The fish swims amidst leather kelp; (if you EVER get a chance to go the the Aquarium in Monterey Bay CA, do so! The kelp forest is ethereal!). Then there is that rather unsightly blob in the lower left. Needle felted from a scrap of wool – its simply a form, an armature of sorts for…

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What is that blob?

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Oh my…

… the anemone! I didn’t have exactly the right colors to achieve an ombre effect on the arms? tentacles? but I am still pleased. so now – the piece in its entirety. All 3″ of it!

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“Surfacing”… my finished tide pool inspired piece.

Details: 1. the anemone in situ. 2. Caroline‘s sea urchin bead sitting on top.  3. Close up of Gardanne Beads enamel fish and Sue Beads lamp work star.

Framed in a stained wood frame – the piece is ready to hang. I like the layering of coral and kelp over the fish – creating some depth. This was a very inspiring theme to work with – thank to Lesley for the topic! Now – please – head over to my friends and colleagues blogs – to see what they have created! 

Guests

AE Team Members:

The eyes have it! The March theme reveal at Art Jewelry Elements

Welcome! Its the end of March and time for the reveal over at Art Jewelry Elements. This month’s theme was very illuminating. I found myself thinking of and researching so many eye motifs… 

Eye inspirations collage

The Egyptian Eye of Horus, Lover’s Eyes and an eye brooch designed by Salvador Dali. (clockwise from top left)

By happenstance, Rachel Helinki of Dida Metals posted a glorious eye pendant/necklace she has created – incorporating one of Joan Miller’s porcelain eye cabochons. I was planning to use a similar cab – so I asked Rachel to appear here with me as my guest… Here is her offering, words and images: … 

“The lovely Jenny Davies-Reazor asked if I wanted to partake in the AJE Monthly Challenge & after seeing the theme — it was a total no brainer for me.  Eyes are a major design element that I like to focus on with my work, so I couldn’t resist participating!  
 
Eyes are actually why I got into metalsmithing to begin with.  Two years ago I was diagnosed with an chronic autoimmune disease of the eyes.  Metalsmithing had always been a dream of mine & the thought of experiencing any kind of vision impairment really put everything in motion for me.  I took a weekend workshop where I had access to materials & tools and never looked back!  
 
Eyes & chronic illness are themes I like to explore personally through metalwork.  I have several eye pieces that I wear as talismans that give me strength when I need it.  I know that many people look to the eye as a symbol for so many different reasons & that it has roots in many different cultures (Thank you Lindsay M Starr for pulling together a great list — I’d not known of the Lover’s Eye before your post!)
 
For this challenge, I’d like to feature one piece in particular — a pendant featuring a gorgeous porcelain cabochon made by Joan Miller!  Joan’s piece was perfect for setting — it has a fun iridescent, detailed iris, but still allowed me to add interest with the setting.  The entire piece is hand fabricated from fine & sterling silver using traditional metalsmithing techniques.  One of my favorite details on this is the bezel which is shaped to look like eyelids!
I’d like to thank the Art Jewelry Elements ladies for hosting this challenge & allowing me to participate (& Jenny in particular for letting me guest post on her blog)!  “

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Detail shots

See? I am utterly enchanted with that necklace! I hope to finally meet Rachel next weekend at Bead Fest Spring – we have been Instagram acquaintances for a while! 

So… the cab ended up in a very different setting for me… 

the beaded eye

I was going to do a wall hanging in an Egyptian style… no – then I was thinking crystals and a teardrop a la Dali… I definitely was keeping to the blue palette in a nod to the traditional evil eye amulets. Then this happenned: 

Eye beading WIP

Now I have to engineer a backing and attach it all together… The frame is polymer from a large! mold I made. It is colored with paint and Gilders paste. I want to use the Latin phrase ” Respice, Adspice, Prospice” somehow in this piece. (It translates as “Look behind, look here, look ahead” or so I have read. Translation apps arent cooperating with me today.) Maybe small stamped brass strips riveted to the frame? Ill keep thinking on this – any ideas are welcome! 

Thanks for stopping by! Please feel free to leave comments for me and for Rachel! We would love to hear from you. Oh – and dont forget the other participants: 

Guests – 
 
AJE Members –