Saturday, June 25, 2011

Island Inspiration Mix

Annie's French Angelfish

I'm back from my wonderful Bahamas Vacation !!!
It's hard to get back to my regular schedule after a week of island time!!! But, I  learned to say "No problem mon " !!!  LOL!!!!
I brought home a suitcase  FULL  of sea-glass and shells we gathered on the beach.
A lot of future jewelry projects !!!
My daughter took some Wonderful photos !!!
Look at that beautiful French Angelfish swimming right toward her camera !!!
I am filled with all sorts of Island Inspiration !!!
This week  I've been busy making Fish pendants .
The bright colors keep me in a vacation mood !!!
But, my fish aren't really replicas of the fish we saw while scuba diving.
Instead they are Fantasy Fish .
Little swimmers in colors inspired by Bahamian art ,
rather than Mother Nature.
My fun fish are meant to capture the feel of the islands,
rather than any exact fish species.
I  took the sights ,sounds , smells and flavors of the Bahamas...stirred them together and used that as my inspiration !

Inspiration is often like that.
It doesn't seem to come from one easily identifiable place .
What we see and what we feel mixes around  in our hearts and minds .
When we are ready to create, our inspiration comes from this mix of visual and emotional memory.
I think that's the difference between copying or reproducing and being inspired by something .
It's fine to try to reproduce a certain style. That's a good way to understand and get a true feeling for something .
But "inspired by "seems to imply that we mix  the ingredients up and add some of our own spices.
Fun to do ,often with interesting results !
this week
Stir up some Summer Inspiration Ingredients
add a few of  your own flavors
see what you  create
and Bead Happy !!!
Fantasy Fish Pendants

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Big Debate

I'm posting this entry from the beautiful  Bahamas !!!
I am truly enjoying a Wonderful  Vacation !!!
Wish you were here  with me  !!!
To me vacation equals sun, sand and scuba diving !!!
My husband and daughters agree .We spell vacation B-E-A-C-H !
My son on the other hand ,will be spending his holiday  by a  mountain lake.
He prefers streams and forests, to surf and beach umbrellas.
He once told me he felt that sitting on the beach was as much fun as sitting on broken glass in a hot oven!
That does seem like a strong statement !!! LOL!!!

Vacation destinations do seem to divide us all.
There are "seashore " people and there are "mountain "people . Most folks feel surprisingly  strongly  about their preference !
We may tour the great cities or small towns .
We may visit everything from the national  parks to amusement parks.Our vacation might  be spent enjoyed any of the wonders of the world . But deep down inside we are still in one camp or the other. No matter were we wander, in our hearts ,we are either  Beach Babes or Mountain Men !
Take a poll sometime'll see !!!
Beach versus Mountains can be the  subject of great debate and some  strong opinions !
Are we genetically programed to love one or the other best ? Maybe  childhood summer vacations influence our choice .
As a child  I did spent a few weeks of every summer at Ocean City Maryland .I loved  searching  for shells and  playing in the waves !
 I took my own children to the beach and they always had a great time . So how did I end up with a Mountain Lake kinda  kid ???
I guess I'll never know . LOL!

In the end the really important thing is we take the  time to vacation somewhere ...
even if it's only in our own backyard .
We all need time to relax and refresh !
We live in a busy ,busy world .
Too busy I think. But, that's a discussion for another day !
Today I'm going to enjoy the beach and come home with renewed energy and  new inspiration!
No matter which side of the vacation fence you  are on....
this week plan some time off  to just RELAX !
Bead Happy ,

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Rocks in My Head

Every month I look forward to the Art Bead Scene Challenge.
Every month it seems that I am inspired by a different aspect of the chosen painting !
Sometimes the theme touches me ,sometimes the colors catch my eye. Other times one element or shape captures my imagination .
When I saw this months painting "Ophelia"  by Odilon Redon
what popped into my head ?
Really  !!!      I just thought of Rocks !!!
How did I get those Rocks in my head ?

First  let  me explain , I Love making faux stones out of polymer clay . For some  reason I am fascinated with the idea  of making light, life like polymer rocks.
I really don't know why this seems like so much fun to me .
Maybe I don't want to know !!!
My family is certainly less than enthusiastic !
The times  when I have joyfully showed them how closely I have been able to reproduce the pebbles in our drive way,
they just roll their eyes ,shake their heads and  silently walk away .
But, faux rocks continue to make me happy !!!

When I saw the beautiful mottled blues in the painting ,
I imagined smooth river rocks lining Ophelia's pool . 
I mixed up a big batch of  blue granite color and made lots of  faux stone beads !
Needless to say, I was very pleased!!! LOL!!
I thought a necklace in these soothing cool tones might be perfect for  a Hot Summer day !!!
But, it did seem to need a  pop or two of color . A touch of  the painting's bright orange and yellow  seemed just right.
I used the shapes of  a rounded flower and a heart  shaped one from the picture . I  hand carved the beads to give them a rustic "wooden"  look.
Some nice twigs made by Mother Nature and some lovely blue sari silk  ribbon ,finished off my necklace  .
A simple, bold design that I think I will enjoy all Summer.
I  already had rocks in my head.....
Now I can wear them around my neck as well !!!
Faux is FUN!!!
This week have some fun with your faux favorites
Bead Happy !


Saturday, June 4, 2011

Tomato Romance

First Harvest
I LOVE Tomatoes !!!
Not the  hard , tasteless grocery store type
I love sweet juicy homegrown tomatoes,vine ripe and still warm from the sun !
Due to an unusually cold and wet spring , my plants were late going into the garden this year.
I'll have to wait for those wonderful huge beefsteak varieties .
But , I'm finally able to  harvest a few little cherry tomatoes.
The sunny  shades of  fruits on the vine inspired me this week .
I made up a blend of "ripening tomato " colored  clay.
I enjoyed those sweet delicious tomatoes and I enjoyed making  beads to match !

Beads made ,photos taken, next step ... list in my shop.
But, what to name this series ???
"Ripe Tomato Bead Set"   "Homegrown Tomato Pendant" ????
Somehow those names don't  bring to mind glamorous  jewelry creations .
How important  is a name for any piece of jewelry ???
I'm not really sure how much the name affects the buyer.
If I named  beads "Victorian" something or other, and a potential buyer  wanted to use them for a funky modern creation,
would the name throw them off ?
How much are you influenced by the names of things ?
I do worry about it . Maybe I shouldn't even name my beads .
But, I do. And believe me, I struggle to come up  with decent descriptive titles.
I decided to call this week's series "Jungle Rhythm "
It sounded much more glamorous than any tomato name I could think of .
The colors do remind me of  steamy jungle foliage and bright  tropical flowers .
I hope the name evokes an exotic and unique color  blend that will spark people's  imaginations.
Dear readers, please keep my secret ...
my beads did not start off in some Gorgeous imaginary  Jungle,
the inspiration began  in  my humble little vegetable garden !

this week give a little thought to how  much names influence you
Bead Happy !

Homegrown Tomato ...I mean ... Jungle  Rhythm series