Monday, April 30, 2012

What kind of flower is this?

While on the road yesterday I stopped at Diamond Caverns, and saw this beautiful bloom. What kind of flower is it?

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Mind Body Spirit

Last night we attended Mind Body Spirit the 2012 Senior Art Show Opening at the Performing Arts Center of Notre Dame College. Our friend Aurelia Nuber  (center of photograph) was showing her amazing photographs and she had 4 live hand painted models mingling with the guests. 
It was fun to see the live models interact with guests and each other. 
It was a great show and you can go see it through May 12th!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Ulla Ahola

These jewelry pieces by Ulla Ahola really caught my eye. I liked the different use of tabs to set the main stone and how a strand of beads framed it. A nice punch of pink!

Brooch: Untitled 2010
Hawk's eye, hematite, synthetic ruby, silver, thread
11 x 6.5 x 0.6 cm

Brooch: Untitled 2008
Tiger's eye, hematite, synthetic ruby, silver, thread
11 x 5 x 0.5 cm

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Gold Growths

These Bead Collection Earrings were rendered in gold by Amitai Kav. I like the thinness of the wires (which look like they would fade into your hair) to the ball of the earrings and how the diamonds and gold look like they've grown as barnacles would.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Anna Ruth Henriques

Using precious metals and stones, Anna Ruth Henriques carves, paints and hand finishes her jewelry pieces to visual perfection in New York City.

Her painted 'eyes of intuition' remind the wearer to trust her own instincts for protection.
Her spider jewelry encourages creativity, self-sufficiency and independence in the wearer, each a quality of the little eight-legged creatures.

I love her use of rock crystal to seal tiny paintings she makes in the jewelry. Very beautiful and meaningful!
You must go and explore her website, the jewelry is marvelous!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Photography Improvements!

Back in February when I was at the Buyer Market of American Craft Show I purchased these sterling silver origami and moonstone earrings from 314 Studio. I've purchased a few pieces of jewelry from this artist and I find her jewelry fascinating. The silver origami is complex and beautiful. 

I took this photo in my new light box! I still want to improve on the quality of the photograph and make it a little sharper and the background white white. It'll take some practice to get my camera setting just right.

Here is my new jewelry photography set up, I love it!

Here is another view of my photography area. My journal is on the floor to the left. I take notes on what settings I used on which piece of jewelry. That way I don't have to start from scratch each time I take a new photo. It's always wise to take notes!

Do you have a photography set up for your artwork? Any tips and tricks you want to share?

The Kitchen's Bounty

Last night Joe and I and some friends took the Egg-Citing April Cooking Class At Kitchen's Bounty! It was a wonderful culinary experience! Terri N Bergman truly believes in food as art. The food should taste ridiculously good as well and being plated beautifully. Above are the lobster deviled eggs we made. Mmmmmm!

Here's my incredibly handsome husband cooking the celery and onions that formed the base of the asparagus soup. As you can see we were in a large open kitchen that allowed for all the guests to see what was going on and everyone was welcome to join in and help with any of the dishes! Terri, the owner, is to the left of my husband.

I learned about a new device, can't remember the name but it allowed Terri and Nathan to cleanly pour the hot asparagus soup into the bowls. I truly had a great time chatting with all the guests while learning great cooking advice!

The final asparagus soup with a citrus creme fraiche, which turned a few carnivores at our table into vegetable lovers. We love the taste of asparagus, but have never been big fans of the texture.  The soup concentrates the taste of asparagus with a much more appealing texture, and the dollop of cold, citrus-infused creme fraiche provides a wonderful contrasting layer of flavor.

Joe does not eat vegetables he hasn't grilled. My friend Michelle's husband Randy hates asparagus. But they spent last night planning to use a thickened version as a pizza topping or pasta sauce! (They were also planning to use the incredible strawberry compound butter served with our appetizer to make grilled cheese sandwiches. The butter was so good they scraped the butter into to-go containers). We will definitely be making many of the recipes especially compound butters! Yum!

The strawberry-mango jubilee was an amazing filling for the crepes we had for dessert. (Joe's only complaint the whole night was that he firmly believes that if you're going to set something on fire in the kitchen, the flames should reach the ceiling).  I took a photo of the hennessy being burned off in the strawberry-mango jubilee. I slowed my shutter speed down to 1/3 of a second so you could really see the blue flames. A safety tip we were told is to never taste anything you do this technique with until you are sure all the alcohol has been burned off. 

We all had a wonderful time at Kitchen's Bounty and plan on going back. This is a cooking/dinning experience that you would love!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Taking Risks!

On Monday I attended 'Risky Business: What does it mean to take risks in the arts? Making the best decisions for your organization.' This was a panel discussion on taking risk in your art organization. It was from the Cleveland Arts Education Consortium.

It was a great talk moderated by Thomas Mulready (founder of Cool Cleveland), and the panel: James Krouse (Director of Programming, Ingenuity Fest), Megan Lykins Reich (Director of Programs/Associate Curator, MOCA Cleveland), Liz Maugans (Managing Direcotr and Co-founder, Zygote Press), Scott Spence (Artistic Director, Beck Center for the Arts) and Mary Verdi-Fletcher (President, The Dancing Wheels Company and School.)

Here are several things, that were said, that caught my attention:

Have a clear overall goal so you know who you are as an organization and that will help you know whether to say yes or no to an opportunity.

Sometimes you need to know when to call it quits on a project that isn't panning out.

When marketing the arts you need to communicate expectations to the audience.

You still learn a lot from failures that will help you in the future.

When you do something risky, it's scary in the moment but in a year or two you'll look back and realize it wasn't that big of a deal.

Someone in the audience said she is motivated by the risks she didnt' take. It motivates her because she didn't take the opportunity then and the outcome could have been great. She doesn't want to miss out now.

Keep in mind no matter how this works out I'll have a great story to tell!

(The picture above is from our trip last fall to Thailand. It was a ceremonial swing in the middle of a town. Years ago the swing had to be removed because some drunk people got hurt using it. Turns out I had my facts wrong, upper class Hindu's would try to swing as high as possible to show their devotion to the Gods but that resulted in some of them flying off of the swing. So the swing was taken down. I love swinging on park swings and this one would have been great! I would have said yes to this risk if it were an option!)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Asymmetrical Love!

Playing with texture and different hues of gold, a necklace from the Galliano Jewellery collection by John Galliano in collaboration with Italian jeweller Damiani.

I've been working on designing some jewelry this week and this piece truly inspires me. I love the asymmetry and that the back of the necklace is stunning. Well done!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Meet my Sister's new bird...

Introducing Edward! He is a sun conure and this photo was taken underneath a white sheet. Both my bird and my sister's love to tunnel under the sheets on our beds. It's hilarious!
My sister, Kelly's Blog.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Join me in Aerial Silks Class!

On Sunday my cousin and I went to an Aerial Silks Class in Cleveland Ohio. Aerial Silks: "involves paired lengths of fabric hung from above that are climbed,wrapped around the body, and/or tied to create dramatic drops, poses and movement above the ground." I took that from the Aerial Silks Website where you should go check out the classes.

We had so much fun! The picture above is of me trying to do a pose. I don't know all the names of the moves so I'll try to describe them as best I can.

In this photo my foot in anchored/tied to the fabric so I can move my other foot and arms and look lovely.

This was my favorite picture of the night. I just look darn good!

My last move of the night I learned how the wrap the fabric around me so that when I fall sideways on my face my hip leans forward to catch the fabric and I can let my hands go and stay suspended. My hands are on my knees, and I looked back to smile at the camera!

This was so much fun and I plan on going back to class!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Calder Jewelry a few of my favorites...

I purchased the book 'Calder Jewelry' a year or so ago and finally sat down to look through it. Many people don't know that Alexander Calder also made jewelry. I wanted to share a few of my favorite pieces. There are hundreds of pieces of jewelry that are very inspirational! I highly recommend buying the book.

Necklace. 1943 Silver wire, cord, and ribbon, loop; 15 3/4 in., element 5 1/4 in. long. Inscription "Calder"

Necklace. 1940 Brass wire; loop: 12 3/4 in., overall; 9 x 10 in.

Brooch. 1936 Silver and steel wire 6 x 5 7/8 in.

Bracelet. 1948 Silver and steel wire, 2 3/4 by 6 by 4 in.

Earrings. 1942 Silver and steel wire, 3 x 4 5/8 in. each.

Earrings. 1945 Silver and steel wire, 4 1/2 x 6 in. each.

Necklace. 1937 Silver wire, loop: 14 1/2 in., breast pieces: 12 x 17 in.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

A little animal photography...

I was playing with my camera yesterday and took some photos of Joe's Leopard Gecko named Alex. Next time we feed him his crickets I'll have to take a photo of him in action. It's fun to watch how he hunts.

He likes to climb on his piece of log that we keep in his aquarium.

Another view.

This is Bentley (Hahns Macaw) who was hard at work helping Joe do some work on the laptop.

Bursts of Color!

I'm loving the polymer clay jewelry of Celine Charuau. Happy Sunday!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Māris Šustiņš

Rings. Silver 925, titanium, topaz, sapphire
The jewelry is made from precious metals silver and gold adding smoky blue titanium and niobium, mysterious tantalum and molybdenum. Like the spring colorful accents added using rubies, grenades, sapphires, topaz and amethysts.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Welcoming the Warm Weather...

With some sun! Loving this pendant by Staurino Fratelli, that warm center stone is a citrine. Citrine is a member of the Quartz Family and the birthstone for the month of November.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Misun Won

This stunning pendant is made of sterling silver, pearls, and red silk. I'm in love with the perfect geometry.
7.5  by 1.7 cm
You can see more of her work at Klimt02.

Thursday, April 5, 2012


I have seen some of Bernie Huebner's and Lucie Boucher's Glasscapes in person and they are magical. This is their Bonsai piece. It's made of glass and back lit, and so easy to maintain! They have many cool Glasscapes they make in their studio at Stone Ridge Glass. Check out more of their awesome glass here.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Beautiful Details...

This piece is called 'The Lotus Brooch' by Mish Tworkowski. It is 18 karat yellow and rose gold, with diamonds and a removable peridot. I love where the marquise diamonds are set and I especially love the detail of the upturned petals and how the undersides that you can see have diamonds set in them. Such a nice touch!