As an instructor at The Art Center of Highland Park, I am able to share my love of mosaics with students with a wide range of experience. Some are brand new to art and others have fine arts degrees, though for most this is their first time working with mosaics. This art form has unlimited possibilities that we explore together, and it is wonderful to see the different directions taken.
One of my students, Cindy Robin, has helped me grow as both a teacher and an artist. Her creativity and talent amaze me. Whenever I introduce new concepts or elements, Cindy jumps in and lets loose with her imagination, vast collection of materials, and skill. Below are just two samples of her wonderful work.
Lichen Fields, California photo by Sylvia Sharnoff
I was so inspired by the color and texture of the lichen that I discovered last week on National Geographic, I felt compelled to do more research. These are my newest additions to my inspiration library. I hope they will inspire you too.
While searching for inspiration in rock formations, I came across this amazing image of lichen on slate featured on National Geographic. The colors and textures are amazing. Lichen is my newest addition to my list of nature’s artistry.
The New Year has officially begun and I’ve welcomed it by cutting into a new batch of stones. One of my favorite stones to cut and use is aquamarine. Sorting through the pound of aquamarine stones I recently purchased, I felt like a kid in a candy store. The many different hues of blues and greens, varying transparency and iridescence of each stone excited me and I couldn’t wait to cut into them to see the treasures within. I have hours of cutting ahead and look forward to the new creative directions the stones take me.
Recently I purchased thirteen pounds of emerald, aquamarine, amethyst, carnelian, citrine, labradorite, amazonite, and bronzite stones at a gem show. I selected the stones not only for their color, but also for their iridescence, transparency and reflectivity. Over the next few months I will be spending hours in my studio hand cutting the stones into the micro-sized pieces I require to create my mosaic art jewelry. I look forward to seeing how this new batch of stones guides me in my future designs.
The beautiful rich blue lapis lazuli has continuously been mined in Afghanistan for over six thousand years. Lapis has been used over the centuries to create jewelry, carvings, mosaics and other ornamental pieces.
Lapis was the stone of royalty used by the kings of Egypt for their beautiful carved amulets and seals. Cleopatra used powdered lapis for eye shadow and it was later used by the Renaissance painters to create deep blue ultramarine paints to depict the water, sky and luxurious fabrics in their masterpieces.
I find that the intense blue of lapis adds an element to my work that no other stone can produce. If you would like to see more gemstone mosaic jewelry please visit Gray Raven Designs.