Yesterday, I went to The Rocky Mountain Bead Society’s 2010 Bead Bazaar at the Denver Merchandise Mart. That was no small feat considering the surprise winter storm that came through the area on Friday and Saturday. Fortunately, my dear friend and mentor, Lexi Erickson, offered to let me spend the night if I could manage to get up to Denver. There was a 2-3 hour break in the weather that allowed me to make it to Denver on Friday evening. Thank you Lexi & Mark! Lexi and I had been planning on going to this bead event for a while because Gary B Wilson and his wife Kathy would be there with his cabochons. Both of us were on the hunt for fabulous stones that would be perfect for a show we will be doing at the Botanical Gardens this fall, along with another 20+ members of Colorado Metalsmiths Association.
This Imperial Jasper was one of my key finds. I spent a good hour looking for the right stones for the work I have in mind for this upcoming show. It was a while before I found it, but when I did I thought it was magnificent. It’s larger than anything I’ve ever done. It makes a statement. And it definitely shows Gary’s care and craftsmanship as a stone cutter. The thing is, I put it back, thinking it was too bold, too much for me to try. Lexi and I walked around the show while Kathy & her daughter were tallying our bill. The image of this stone started to haunt me and just got stronger in my mind. Lexi has told me if you find that one stone that speaks to you, get it or it will always call to you.
We sat at one of the lunch tables to rest and I told her about this stone. She had seen it and knew which one I was talking about. I told her it was haunting me. She said if it was one of those stones, then I needed to get it. I thought if it was still there, it was meant to be. As the picture confirms, I have this stone in my possession. I want it to be my standout piece for this fall show.
This picture, and the others in this post, are ones I have taken as part of my inventory process. They don’t do the stones justice but I can tell you for a fact that they are beautiful. They have been cut by a master. Gary has a way of bringing out elements in a stone that are perfect for the Art Jeweler. Now his work is done and mine begins with designs and metal work to enhance the beauty of these stones. The next time you see any of these stones, they will be in their settings and Dan will take those wonderful photographs that he does that does justice to the work.
The rich forest green shades in these Imperial Jaspers were too hard for me to resist. There is a pair that should make a wonderful set of earrings as companions to the big stone pictured at the beginning of this post. I am exited about the possibilities for this new work. I have this sense that some of these are perfect fits for my Soul Searching Series. Time will tell.
This time I indulged my love of purple more than I allowed myself at the Denver Gem & Mineral Show. These two are a couple of my favorites. The one on the left is a very striking stone; it has a lot of depth. These are the types of things that Gary does with his work. If you ever have an opportunity to see his work in person, please do so. And introduce yourself to Gary and his wife, Kathy. They are good people.
Lexi has gotten me hooked on Red Jaspers. She found that heart shaped stone and in my box it went. Hearts have proven to be a real design challenge for me, so we’ll see how I do with this one. I know she likes to challenge me so I am certain that is why this heart came my way.
I had to share some of Gary’s work. It’s time for me to get busy!
Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person.