April 25th, 2009


Instant Gratification: Fire Birds and Ravens

The essential nature of lost wax casting is delayed gratification. I thought of this when folks asked me for pictures of the fire bird. It is now cast and it cast beautifully, with all the details. About 2 weeks from now it will be finished, the stones will be set, and I'll finally get to see it complete. If it wasn't a commission, I would immediately (or what passes for immediately for me) put its photo up. But since it is a commission, I can't put it up til Diana sees it. Right now I'm not sure whether that will be here or at Wiscon.

When I first started working in wax I found it frustrating.  But since it turned out I need lots of time to think about pieces before I actually start working on them, it's a very comfortable part of my process. A long time ago, I did welded bronze jewelry and that is truly instant gratification. Now I very occasionally made bead necklaces from my grandmother's antique bead collection. I do enjoy starting something and finishing it the same day.

Anyway since I can't give instant gratification on the fire bird.  But I can with ravens. I originally saw them in London at the Tower, and then saw them often when I went to the Pacific Northwest. Now I see them here in San Francisco. I love the way they look and move and their clear intelligence.

This one is my Poe raven, very 19th century and very classic.  I made it first with a group of pieces from mysteries that included a ruby jeweled "Five Red Herring" Dorothy L. Sayers necklace.

raven pendant

This is a much more free form abstract raven.  The design idea was begun from an illustration that was brought to me.

keltic raven