This is the second installment of my etsymetal teams’ blogging ‘carnival’…. the idea is that a question is posed and a bunch of us who are active bloggers answer, providing links to other members’ blogs।
The question posed was: How did you develop your signature style?
For me, the organic, voluptous, full blown style of carving I do came about some what accidentally….or rather serendipitously. I had actually been away from my jewelers tools for a few years, getting a masters degree in art education/art therapy. The program was one that focused on Jungian thought, or archetypal art therapy…the study of universal symbols commonly held in the subconscious, which has always been a keen interest of mine. Trained in traditional metalsmithing techniques, I had felt ‘limited’ by the rigors of working with sheet metal, and put it aside. During the time I was in grad school, my sister began keeping bees….she was producing honey, balms, and of course, the bees were producing wax. Grad school ended, and I began to think about jewelry making again….only this time, I was after a completely different kind of aesthetic. I wanted work that reminded me of the images that I loved from different spiritual and artistic traditions: nikki de saint phalle, frida kahlo, allan houser, buddhism, curandera lore, adinkra symbolism of Ghana…and so much more…I try to move through life with open eyes and an open heart….
I began to play with commercial carving waxes, took a workshop, but still wasn’t quite getting the results I was after. I picked up a piece of the golden wax from the bees, and well, the rest came naturally… it is hard to carve, but it gives me the organic, hand hewn style that is my signature….the imagery, the symbolism, come from so many different sources, it is hard to say….but the style of carving, comes with a little help from the bees! But they are in danger…..and without them, we are all in danger…you can learn more about this at http://www.helpthehoneybees.com/ or http://www.vanishingbees.com/….. Creating jewelry in this way has caused me to fall in love more deeply with jewelry making than ever before. When I carve I feel as if I am doing exactly what I am supposed to be doing, exactly at that moment every day….
If you love shiny things and have an interest in metal artists and where they get their ideas and inspirations, check out the blogs of these other talented femmes: