History, part 3
All through my life, I have gone to the woods for solace and inspiration. While hiking one day, I passed by an escarpment where chunks of rock had fallen out of the cliff face making for an interesting composition. I was intrigued with the idea of these “windows” into the rock. I did some drawings and made my first pieces in my new style. It was the beginning of the Stone Age!
My new one of a kind pieces, all brooches, were done in the champlevé technique. The small enamel “window” inlays were surrounded by silver which was scratched, engraved and oxidized to look more like the stony cliffs that were my inspiration. I created the recessed areas to be filled with enamel by soldering together two thin layers of sterling silver. The “windows” were pierced out of the uppermost layer. I often engraved and scratched the underneath layer; these marks would be visible underneath the transparent enamel.
Later on, I began to experiment with more minimal windows underlaid with fine silver and 24K gold foils. The glimmering of the foils beneath the surface suggested an air of mystery. For my production line of earrings, pendants and pins, I used more color and less silver. I wanted to emulate the soft feel of sea glass and weathered stone, so I began to etch the enamel surface with acid, as well as oxidizing the silver. Finally I had found a direction that felt right and my sales started to increase rapidly. I did my first wholesale show, and a couple of years later was selling my work through more than 100 galleries and museum stores across the country.