Saturday, October 8, 2011

ABS October !

Gaea Necklace
Time for ABS October challenge !
This month's painting is a delight of muted color and natural items!
I  adore " Hedgehog in a Landscape" by Giovanna Garzoni
At first glance , I knew I would make some lovely neutral oak leaves...just my style. No brainer ...right ?
Then I began to read about the artist .
Giavanna began painting as a young girl and was one of the first women to paint still life.
In our time, not extraordinary , in hers a very brave move.
Thinking about this , I was drawn to ideas of  strong women .
I mused about womanhood and our close connection to the forces of nature.
My inspiration evolved into a earth mother theme .
My focal idea became a  " Goddess bead".
I somehow saw a heart shape in that hedge hog's face ...don't ask!
I used the heart shape in the pendant and the clasp bead.
Along the way my goddess became a bit more "Greek statue " and less "primitive icon" .
But, I was pleased with the shape and the way the clay developed shading .
I picked some natural silk ribbon for the softness of womanhood . I added  stoneware  worn smooth by the ocean waves.
Pieces that stay strong against the elements and become more beatuiful with age .
I added a snail shell and some acorns,items straight from the painting ,that are ancient fertility symbols.
Then just a few leaves for balance ...
my necklace was finished ...
or was it ???

Goddess beads aren't for everyone or for everyday.
I make no apology for using the frank beauty of the female form  in my creation .
However ,I kept rethinking my design .Was my focal more new young beauty than the classic earth mother  I had envisioned  ?

I took my necklace to my most frank critics , close friends!
My friends range from quirky mixed media artist to prim and proper conservative !
They are kind and rarely say  "what were you thinking "!!!
But, if they say "oh that's nice " ...well ...I get the point!!!
As a whole they liked my design !
One friend ,who happens to be pregnant, loved it !!!
However, she admitted  she probably wouldn't actually wear it .
She thought a more primitive goddess would be closer to  her style.
So we Googled Goddesses  for comparison .
We both loved an ancient design with a  spiral fertility symbolize on it.
back to the drawing board  , ie: clay table.
I created a new softer  looking female form and I used the snail shell to give her a spiral  on the tummy !
I am finally content with my creation !
I followed  that gut feeling and rethought my concept .
Sometimes  a revisit and and redo are in order !
Please don't tell , but my necklace is going to be part of a baby shower gift for my friend !
this week
revisit a not quite right design
refresh, redo
Bead  Happy !


  1. It is gorgeous, as usual! I love reading the stories behind your creations.

  2. Holy Cow, you've got something made already. Of course, I'm the Queen of procrastination and will most likely throw something together at the eleventh hour.

    Your piece is just gorgeous!!!!!1

  3. Wow - love the piece! I really love the goddess pendant! Stunning!

  4. Beautiful! And I loved the stories behind your thought and design process.

    I took a much more literal approach to this inspiration.

  5. Love the heart and research you put behind your piece. This one is very interesting.. and I'd wear it for sure. Your eyes just go to each piece to admire and think about.