Monday, 26 April 2010

New Moon Bunny Pendants now available!

After selling out of my first range of little moon bunnies, I have finally made some more! They are available here.

You can also shop in £s at Folksy!

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Fab exhibitions at Somerset House and the Courtauld Gallery

Yesterday I went to see two wonderful exhibitions. The first is Michelangelo's Dream at the Courtauld Gallery, which exhibits exquisite presentation drawings made by Michelangelo for Tommaso de Cavalieri.

The second is Pick Me Up: Contemporary Graphic Art Fair at the embankment galleries at Somerset House. Featured is an open studio by the artist Rob Ryan, which is a fascinating insight into his working processes. The prints on display by up and coming artists are consistently witty, effective and interesting.

As I was walking through the square there was a pigeon having a bath in the fountains. It was such a charming sight that I took a few photos to capture the moment!

Thursday, 22 April 2010

In Search of Vikings

Many things have contributed to my recent love of Vikings not least the film How to Train your Dragon, which combines humour with dragons and echos many of the themes that I enjoy writing about when I create my own little fictional tales.

An interest in Medieval history spurred by watching Kingdom of Heaven the director's cut (plus the copious special features) combined with the prospect of another Ridley Scott film about Robin Hood starring Russell Crowe have also kindled my interest in the concepts of knights, heroes, peasants and chivalry.

I recently visited York, an area steeped in Viking history and saw the site of the Battle of Stamford Bridge where a single Viking held the bridge and thwarted Harold Godwinson's army until he was defeated (shot from below) by a rather sneaky Saxon on a boat. This took place the day before the Battle of Hastings, which perhaps explains why Harold's army was defeated as they'd already been battling a band of fearsome warriors the previous day. I have to say when faced with the prospect of fighting a heavily armed Norman or a heavily armed Viking I would prefer to face a Norman. The Vikings of my imagination are fearsome with beards and axes in constant supply and look rather like Gimli from Lord of the Rings but taller. However, I suppose that Harold didn't do too well out of the Norman's use of arrows in battle so I'd probably want to avoid both Normans and Vikings in a battle situation!

I was fortunate enough to see the Bayeaux Tapestry last year and was fascinated by the idea that history is written by the victors. Following that, the Anglo-Saxon hoard found only a few miles from the village where I grew up was also a factor in my desire to research the jewellery created by the artisans who lived a thousand years ago. If I find jewellery techniques trying with modern tools that have evolved over hundreds of years then how was such exquisite work created in what is perceived to be a far more primitive time?

I bought a Viking design melamine plate recently from a wonderful designer called Sandra Monat who has a shop called Herzensart.

I thoroughly recommend her work and I love that her shop is based most centrally around the theme of Vikings. I know myself that I will always have a vast array of ideas that I want to create jewellery ranges around but I do sometimes wonder whether a shop with a theme could prove a more effective strategy.

Anyway, I have a book called 1066 the year of three battles and I am planning a trip to The British Museum in the next week or so to do a few sketches so watch this space for a new Viking range! It will be inspired by the courageous acts and wonderful craftsmanship that occurred in a time that most people know only a handful of details about but also by the fact that Vikings are supremely cool and it gives me an excuse to look arty whilst sketching odd little characters in a tiny Moleskine sketch book! :D

Monday, 19 April 2010

Pretty New Rings!

I have had a lovely day making some dainty little stacker rings and my first ever pair of stud earrings.

They are now available on my etsy shop!

Thursday, 8 April 2010

The Early Bird Garnet and Cranberry Pearl Necklace

My necklace The Early Bird Garnet and Cranberry Pearl Necklace has been featured on Inspirational Beading! The theme this week is Feathered Friends. Check out the other feathery goodness here.