Tuesday, March 30, 2010

albuquerque bound!

this week is both glenn and hazel's spring break. i had big visions of us getting our tax returns, packing up the car, and heading to the beach. rocky point maybe? san diego? as usual, glenn reeled me back in and helped me to see that i was being a bit unrealistic. so, we compromised (it is, after all, the name of the game) and are now going to albuquerque, new mexico. it is only a four hour drive, as opposed to fourteen. i got us a room through hotwire.com (for only $60 a night!) and we will be staying at the hyatt regency, in old town, right near the kids' museum, zoo, aquarium, and botanical gardens. the hotel has a pool on the roof. we are going to have a ball.

needless to say, i will be away from the computer for the next few days. we will return on saturday night. have a great week; see you soon!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

darkness and the prairie

one of my all time favorite books ever is "letters to a young poet" by ranier maria rilke. last night, after i finished this piece, i was reading it, as i do from time to time, when i need to remind myself about certain aspects of an artist's life. he captures it so eloquently and so beautifully. i was shocked at how similar his sentiments were to the words i chose for this piece...

"all things consist of carrying to term and then giving birth. to allow the completion of every impression, every germ of a feeling deep within, in darkness, beyond words, in the realm of instinct unattainable by logic, to await humbly and patiently the hour of the descent of a new clarity: that alone is to live one's art, in the realm of understanding as in that of creativity."

"the desire to be creator, to give birth, to guide the growth process is nothing without its constant materialization in the world, nothing without the thousandfold consent of things and animals."
"...it is clear that we must embrace struggle. every living thing conforms to it. everything in nature grows and struggles in its' own way, establishing its' own identity, insisting on it at all cost, against all resistance. we can be sure of very little, but the need to court struggle is a surety that will not leave us. it is good to be lonely, for being alone is not easy. the fact that something is difficult must be one more reason to do it."
the back of this piece says, “without darkness, nothing comes to birth, as without light nothing flowers”, may sarton. on the front, resting atop a swirly vine, there is a beautiful robin's egg blue glass bead nestled in a sweet little flower, with two labradorite accents.

"The prairie in the distance looked as if clothed with rainbows that waved to and fro over its surface.” – Charles Sealsfield

i've always thought that prairies had the majestic grandeur of quiet anonymity. as much as you want to be yourself, to stand out, to mark your place in the world, don't you sometimes just want to blend in, to be anonymous for a bit, to be somewhere where nobody knows you?

this incredible cut of owyhee jasper looks exactly like a beautiful prairie field, with sheafs of wheat swaying in a gentle breeze, perhaps at dawn, or maybe dusk. it's just incredible, soothing, beautiful. to compliment this stone, for one side of the chain, i built a link chain with striking mookaite rondelle beads. the other side is a heavy, textured link chain.

the back of this piece says "on the prairie.

Friday, March 26, 2010


Yoga is the perfect opportunity to be curious about who you are.
~Jason Crandell, quoted in Yoga Journal

i went to a yoga class today, for the first time in a looooong time. 9 AM, there i was, walking down the street in the snow, with my mat. it was so very spectacular! it felt so awesome to be doing something just for me, for my body, for my head, for my heart... i really needed it. i paid ahead for 6 more classes and i am so excited! it sounds so cliche', but it's so easy to get so wrapped up in all the day-to-day and forget all about taking care of YOU.

i've been really trying lately to incorporate exercise back into my life. the difference is that i used to exercise because i hated my body and i wanted to lose weight. now, i am really focusing on loving my body, JUST AS IT IS, and exercising because i want to be good to myself and feel good. i've struggled with self-image issues and eating disorders for my entire life and i actually think i may be on the path to a healthy relationship with my body. i wonder what it will feel like?

after a beautiful class, i got to spend a nice long day in the shop. i completed several pieces, but didn't finish them in time to photograph them before it was too dark. i will share them with you soon. i hope you have a great weekend!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

to help you find your way...

when you are hiking in an area where the trail is not especially obvious, like a red rock slope or a scree covered mountain, you will often find a cairn waiting for you, to help you find your way.

these signposts reassure you that you are heading in the right direction. you are not lost. you have stayed the course.

other times, stone cairns can be used to mark a significant spot, a spectacular view, a fork in the trail, a good swimming spot, etc.

the symbolism of a cairn is beautiful. i wanted to make a piece that would offer you a simple reminder that you are going the right way or perhaps it will be to mark a significant even in your life, or simply to remind you to get outside! whatever its' meaning for you, i have a hunch that you will caress it constantly; it feels delicate and delectable.

i have been brainstorming ideas for "desert-y" pieces i could make for moab~ sego lilies, arches, cactus? and i ran into a friend the other day who inquired about a cairn necklace. hello! i am so excited about it... i m going to make a bunch of them, in all shapes and sizes, every one unique and special. i know it's quite a bit smaller than my usual pieces, but this baby's got mass. it is quite heavy. let me know what you think please, my dears.

and here are some photos of our lovely ski saturday. although it is certainly well on its' way to being spring here, it is still full-on winter up at lizard head pass.

and, emma tagged me with a "circle of friends" award. i am to name five things that i love and then tag 5 other fellow bloggers. (sorry, rachel, you tagged me with one like this, with 10 things and i didn't do it. please forgive me!)

1. my sweet, darling husband
2. my precious, beautiful girls
3. making beautiful things from raw silver, stone, and glass
4. where i live, for so many reasons
5. honest, true, soulful expression, in whatever form it takes

i am tagging susie, rachel cain, cathy, janell, and poppy q

my day in the studio was cut short today because junebug's a bit sick and i had to pick her up from daycare (will probably be taking her to the doc tomorrow). however, FRIDAY ought to be a real and true full day in the shop. seems like it's been forever!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

here it is...

i finally got my tattoo thursday night! it was a very wonderful experience. although it was very, truly, sincerely painful, it was a sort of invigorating pain. as nic said, while he was doing the tattoo, it's a pain that sort of pierces your soul. as it should, i suppose. this was a huge decision and a lot of soul-searching and questioning really went into the whole thing. of course, recognizing that i was truly committing myself to a life as an artist and not harboring any future plans of say, working at the bank. also knowing that certain people, including my mother and father, would definitely not approve and that i would be subject to some certain scrutiny and judgement.

nic and i met several times and discussed design ideas. you may recall my original design idea, which turned out not to be very conducive to a hand tattoo. so we worked together to come up with a new one. i told him i wanted something feather-ish and organic and flow-y and plant-ish. when i got there, he had sketched out 5 different possibilities for me to choose from. this is the one i picked:

the photo is not very great, and my hand is quite swollen, and of course it is much brighter than it will actually be once everything heals and settles in, but i wanted to show it to you anyway. i am so very in love with it. i just can't stop looking at it. nic perfectly captured what i wanted in the design. and the colors! he kept trying to convince me to go bolder and brighter, but i kept telling him to keep it soft and organic. i was a bit of a backseat driver while he did the coloring. what are you doing there? what's the next color? are you going to fade that brown or make it solid? obviously i wanted it to be perfect. it is.

when i showed junebug she said "flying away". so very perceptive, my girls. it was bandaged when i got home thursday night and hazel had been waiting up to see it. i told her she'd have to wait until the morning. she come bursting into my room at 7 a.m. and grabbed my hand and said, "oh, mommy, it is beautiful!"

i was instructed to take a few days off of work to let it begin to heal. it is hard not to be out in the shop, especially since i have so many things i want to get going on, but it is worth it.

in other news, i got an absolutely fabulous shipment of teresa's glass flower cabs yesterday! check these out:

can you even believe how incredible they are? she is absolutely amazing, isn't she? i simply cannot wait to make some things with them!

and, i got accepted to do the moab arts festival!!! yay! so i will be mostly working on pieces for the show from now until the end of may. please don't be alarmed if there is not a lot of action on etsy. i am particularly excited about some silver cairn pieces i am going to do (moab IS in the desert, ya know.) i have applied for 3 other shows this summer as well. i don't want to jinx anything, but i will keep you posted as to whether or not i get in to them.

hope you are all having a terrific weekend! patty's coming over to watch the girls so glenn and i can have one last ski date this afternoon! (i keep saying it's the last ski, don't i?)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

the harbinger

The Robin is the One
That interrupt the Morn
With hurried -- few -- express Reports
When March is scarcely on --

The Robin is the One
That overflow the Noon
With her cherubic quantity --
An April but begun --

The Robin is the One
That speechless from her Nest
Submit that Home -- and Certainty
And Sanctity, are best

~Emily Dickinson

the robin has long been called the harbinger of spring. i have been seeing them all over town and it brings me such joy. i made this piece to honor that.

also, we went for the last telluride valley floor ski of the season yesterday. ;~( we went with our dear friends the baldwins; it was sweet. my camera battery dies, so these are kelly's photos.

matching sleds

here we are on the gondola

Friday, March 12, 2010

the fruits of the day...

here they are! i didn't have time to showcase them all here first, but they are all in the shop now if you want to read more about them. it was a great day. i am tired. but, i made...

the one thousand blooms necklace, with pink peruvian opal and peridot

the new growth earrings, with prehnite and flourite

a new be the change necklace, with labradorite and chalcedony

the so peaceful from a distance ring, apatite

and the rhodochrosite lotus earrings

can't hardly wait!

just wanted to say good morning to you all! it is a gorgeous day here. the sun is shining. the birds are chirping. there is, in fact, what i believe to be a red-winged blackbird hanging out in my neighbors tree. it is making the most beautiful song, a song that always tells me spring is on its' way just as surely as nightfall. i also am delighted because i get 10 whole hours in the studio today! i seriously am about to just run out there in my bathrobe. i can't wait another second. my head is simply bursting with ideas, like a watering can that got overfilled. i've been jotting down ideas and making sketches all over the place this morning. here is one, on the back of one of my business cards:

it will be a sort of nouveau-ish flower with a gorgeous pink peruvian opal and a handcrafted link chain with fabulous chunky faceted peridot beads...

like i had with the "muchness" piece (which a wonderful lady that also exhibits her work at the artisans cooperative gallery i am a member of just bought), i've been having a completely overwhelming need to make these designs. i am not thinking about what people will buy or how much a piece will cost or if the color combinations are ones that folks desire. i am simply feeling that i must make these pieces. they have to be created. whatever happens after that is great. it used to be that i only felt like this about pieces i was making for myself. i think i am having a kind of a transition as an artist. i am quite excited about it!

also, hazel had an art show at her school last night. it was so sweet!
her teacher told me "hazel is such a little artist, just like her mom."

well, i will be reporting back to you this evening to show you my new creations!
have a wonderful day!

p.s. thanks so much to those of you who had advice regarding my last post. i deleted it because i felt perhaps it was a bit inappropriate...)

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

true blue

i had a very awful thing happen to me today. i felt a real betrayal from someone who has been a dear friend for a long time. lately, i seem to be getting myself into trouble for being honest all over the place. and, truth be told, it's sort of always been that way. i am one of those people that people either love or hate for their honesty. i tell it like it is. i do not beat around the bush. i tend to call people on their shit. i get into trouble a lot. i've had a rather lonely life.

after the conversation with my friend, i felt compelled to make this piece. can you guess who wrote the song that inspired it? that's right. conor oberst. i can't help it. he's the best songwriter i know and his words speak to me like no others...

the stone: apatite. the color makes me giddy. i've always loved this stone in its' bead form and it recently occurred to me that i may be able to find it in cabochon form. i lucked out and bought a LOT of it. you will be seeing it around. it's the most succulent shade of teal blue. the photos are misleading; it appears opaque, but it really is not. it has this amazing chatoyancy and shimmer and i can't really describe it.

the song: a really rather silly one called true blue. it's all about being blue and the color blue, and really, about being true to yourself. you can read the lyrics here. as most of us probably have, i have struggled with "being myself" for my whole life. i love this song.

as usual, making this piece helped me feel better. then, while i was waiting in line at the store, i saw this quote, written on their white board.

be who you are
and say what you feel
because those who mind don't matter
and those who matter don't mind.

~ dr. suess

i also made a raven thoughts necklace today...
with bezel-set onyx and garnets

and a handmade link chain with garnet, vintage black glass, and freshwater pearl beads, finished with a figure eight clasp and a faceted garnet lantern!

and, another timing of things necklace
this one with aquamarine

and some sweet little ball accents

it was so great to be out in the shop all day today! it's been too long. i get to "work" all day friday too!