June 22, 2017
I am excited to announce my partnership with a wonderful company called VIDA.
As a fine artist, as well as a jewelry designer, I am now able to have my artwork reproduced on tops, scarves, bags, wraps, clutches, tapestries and pillows!
It is so much fun now to create these coordinating collections where I can pair the Garden of Silver jewelry with the fashions.
Green Apples Collection
And a couple of my favorite colored pencil drawings, 'Wading River Rocks' and 'Tidal Pool' are reproduced on this racerback tank, mulit-wrap scarf and top. They all coordinate with the Sapphire Drift earrings and Tidal Pool necklace.
One of the best aspects of working with VIDA is their commitment to paying it forward by teaching literacy to their factory workers creating the fashions. As a teacher I love this.
Please enjoy browsing through this collection and sharing it with your friends.
June 06, 2015
My garden is full of blooming Peony flowers today! I have used the Peony as inspiration for many of my fine art pieces in both colored pencil and silverpoint drawings.
This is an ongoing series that I have been working on using Silverpoint. They are close up views of Peony flowers that grow every year in my garden. I spend hours photographing the flowers with my digital camera, cropping the images in Photoshop and then I print them out to use as reference photos. I like to photograph in bright sunlight in order to get high contrast images-bright whites and dark shadows.
What is silverpoint? Silverpoint is the art medium that the art masters, such as Rembrandt and Durer and Da Vinci used to draw with. This technique/medium pre-dates the invention of the pencil. I discovered this medium while taking a Botanical Illustration class at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx. The instructor, Laura Vogele, brought in an amazing drawing of a Locust bug that she created in silverpoint and I was mesmerized. Immediately I went and bought the supplies and got to work.
The way it works is that a piece of sterling silver wire (a perfect art medium for a jewelry designer to use!) is placed into a mechanical pencil holder and drawn on a special clay coated paper. The silver will not work on any other paper. Traditionally, the surface for drawing was rabbit skin glue, but I have issues with that, so it’s clay coated paper for me. Silverpoint can not be erased, any mark that goes down, stays down so careful planning is required before beginning.
Silverpoint drawing has a limited range of values that can be achieved so a careful rendering of the image is required or everything will be gray. I make sure to save the white areas so my value scale will be more dramatic. Another interesting element about it is that the silver in the drawing will slowly tarnish over time creating a warm patina, which I love. You can see in the above images how the silver turns into a warm grey.
On my drawing table today is a half finished silverpoint drawing of a bunch of asparagus. Planning on spending the weekend drawing. I will post the finished 'masterpiece' next week.
December 30, 2014
Now that the crazy busy holiday season is over it was time yesterday to get some inspiration for the new year. My husband Thomas and I headed into NYC to spend the day at one of my favorite places, the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
I am planning on adding a little color to my jewelry with the new collection by enameling the silver through a variety of enameling techniques that I am currently experimenting with.
The botanical artwork in these gorgeous kimonos was breathtaking and the composition of flowers is perfect. They made me want to ditch my wardrobe and fill the closet with kimonos!
Here is a close up of Japanese fabric swatches along with stunning calligraphy.
Texture, shape and patina inspiration.
And, I am always fascinated with Koi fish. Our pond is too small for them. The dream is to create a huge pond on the property and fill it with Koi, lotus flowers, lily pads and frogs.
Some breathtaking Tiffany stained glass masterpieces. And I couldn't resist a selfie with Tiffany!
Calder's mobile sparked some ideas as did this Jasper Johns encaustic painting.
I am always drawn to Japanese design elements. This Noguchi fountain will make you forget about all your stresses. So peaceful and calm. We have about five Asian lamps in the house, maybe time for a hanging one.
This detail of a marble sculpture also was incredible. If I can figure out how to get that texture in silver, that may be another new direction.
It was so great getting recharged artistically by the extraordinary artworks at this world class museum. You really need a week, or more, to go through the museum because of its size and the amount art and artifacts that are there. We had total sensory overload after four hours! Loved it all, such a great day. I'm ready to sit down with my sketchbook and begin another new jewelry direction.
January 10, 2014 1 Comment
The New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx is one of my favorite public gardens to visit. I went there on this cold grey day to spend some time inside in their amazing greenhouses. Being surrounded by warm humid air and the scent of tropical flowers is such a fabulous way to enjoy a winter afternoon.
Here are some of the flower photos I took during this trip.
I have taken botanical illustration classes at this esteemed institution for the last few years and am determined to, one day, finish the program and obtain my Botanical Illustration Certificate. There aren't enough hours in the day to do everything that I am passionate about!
Here is my 'Iris' colored pencil drawing.
My 'Peony Soul' colored pencil drawing.
June 13, 2013
My garden is full of huge, gorgeous, fragrant peonies right now. I have spent hours photographing these beauties which I use as references for my colored pencil drawings, one of which is right here!
I also used one of my reference photographs to create a drawing of this peony which I then made into a wax carving that I cast into sterling silver. Just a little peek into my creative process!