Eilisain aka Lisette in Gaelic

Welcome to my blog, where I document my process in making jewelry, muse on the influence of art and the joy of making beautiful objects.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

I heart hearts

Not really but it's what I'm working on right now for the ECU Metals Guild Valentine's day sale as well as preparing for selling at a local boutique, Moxie, in Greenville.

It's funny because the splattered/pierced heart design came out of simple doodling and sketching. But often that's when the best ideas blossom.

Anywho, I was a busy bee in the studio on this snowy/sleeting day and it was great because it was pretty empty!

I'm quite enjoying the production work and playing with enameling techniques.

Also here is a picture of my wooden spoons for my Design 2 class with Bob Ebendorf. It's quite fun, I've already pierced one of the spoons and will file and paint them on Monday.

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

print resources

I recently received my issue of Lapidary Journal's Jewelry Artist and it's a really good issue.

It has an article on pricing jewelry; which I'm currently reading and one on how to sandcast a belt buckle in addition to an article on new stones. I always get excited when I get Jewelry Artist.

Which leads me to a discussion we had at the metal topics symposium at ECU. I've noticed that on most jewelry blogs artists primarily reference other artists and blogs (or any other topic) and don't often cite or discuss print materials. When I first came into jewelry I didn't have a formal teacher and when I made pieces I took advice from the projects in my print materials. They are invaluable resource to me. And they're getting better!

I'd like to reference this one memory I have of Metalsmith magazine, that I think is ironic. I was at my local Golds Gym searching for magazines to read on the elliptical and I came across Metalsmith and I thought, "uh, I should be reading this and why am I finding it at the gym?". Complete moment of destiny.

I found new artists and concepts, techniques I hadn't thought of as well as schools to look into and apply.

Ever since I've been a subscriber to Metalsmith and Jewelry Artist. I've also come to the conclusion that it's incredibly important, as metalsmiths and jewelers to support this organizations and materials. They keep the tradition alive. Pin It

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


I continue my art education with Design 2 and Figure Drawing. I'm truly appreciating the learning process; taking the time to study line, form and all the elements/foundations of design.

This year has already taught me so much and it's only January 26th! I am enjoying drawing much more than I did last semester. Despite my teacher being a bit dry, he is very good.

And my design class is with the very innovative and inventive, Bob Ebendorf. He has such wonderful and enthusiastic energy, a master teacher in the art of possiblities...why only use one material or why not use dirt from the ground or whatever?

I think that is what has become much of a revelation for me. Broadening my palette to include new materials, methods. First coming into jewelry/metals can bit a bit overwhelming because there is so much to absorb. In addition, to changing what I view as jewelry moreso adornment.

I could go on for awhile but here is a brush I made in Bob's workshop at the symposium 2 weeks ago. Pin It

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

eye candy

Oh dear....why don't I live in Europe, more like Barcelona?! I wish I could've attended this exhibition, " Joyas a la Carta" en Barcelona. I would've been in heaven, not that I was this past weekend at the symposium.

Some of my favorite artists (ex. Silvia Walz) were there and luckily I understood everyword of this video (speaking Spanish has so many benefits)!

Watching the interviews and seeing the jewelry displayed so creatively, makes me want to study abroad or apprentice somewhere in Spain. Perhaps one day... Pin It

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

process shots

First broken heart brooch. Suger-fired black enamel and tulle set in copper.
Second brooch, prior to setting.
Almost ready for being set.

I've begun my Valentine's day pieces.

The black suger-fired brooch came out relatively decent - I'm not very happy with the setting.
The second brooch...I did more piercing and also put the prongs close to them = bad idea.
I'm not going to be shy about posting my errors as well as sucesses. Forethought should be considered in all steps which I'm still learning! grrr. I am however very happy with the design and odd shape of these brooches.

I'm going to make more of an effort to seek out the advice of the metals faculty, I may not be taking metal classes but that doesn't mean I shouldn't take advantage of my resources! Pin It

Monday, January 18, 2010

ECU Materials Topic: New techniques in jewelry and metalsmithing

I do I describe this past weekend?

Provoking and enlightening.

I love to recall the time of when I listened to Laura Wood's idea for the symposium. Laura Wood is a graduate student in ECU's metals/jewelry program. We were at a potluck with new graduate students and I was fortunate enough to be invited. She talked about hosting a symposium where students and faculty from several universities would come together and share new methods, materials in the field in addition to attending workshops and panel discussions. A mini-SNAG Laura said.

I was all about this brilliant idea Laura had! I come from a background in organizing feminist conferences and community events - this is what I love about working with other like-minded individuals. However it is incredible undertaking.

Well, come 4 1/2 months later and the symposium was a very positive and wonderful success! It was incredibly enjoyable and eye-opening for everyone, I met some incredible people.

The symposium hosted faculty and students from: University of Georgia, Indiana University, Appalachian State University, Winthrop University and Virginia Commonwealth University.
In addition to some students from Savannah College of Art and Design along with others I can't remember!

Here are some pictures from this weekend:
The symposium poster...I was a complete dork and got mine signed by several of my favorite artists!
The symposium registration table.
Several ECU grad and undergrad students with metals professor Mis-Sook Hur.
Bob Ebendorf, ECU metals fellow faculty, discussing the variety and creativity of the brushes after his 'Brush of Creativity' demo. It was SO much fun. Bob stresses the importance of play time, to use anything as a sounding board for new methods and materials.
Liz Steiner checking out the brushes.

I could go on and on about the historic moments, new information, discussions and people but I crave sleep after the 3-day weekend. Pin It

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

caught by the hair

cameo2 detail
Originally uploaded by borderlinebarbie

Isn't this cameo brooch fascinating? It's made by Barbara Smith, a first year graduate student at SUNY-New Paltz in the metals program. On the back it has a momento of someone's hair, which people used to do back in the middle ages and probably earlier than that.
I found Barbara's work on flickr and many of her pieces contain of some sort of hair.

The tooth in this brooch is especially cool to me!

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Sunday, January 10, 2010

in my dreams

I would travel, travel and travel! Then spend my free time making jewelry and promoting it.

Hopefully, I'll do this when I retire. And when I do travel, one of the countries that make my list is New Zealand. The terrain is so varied and beautiful, I must experience it and not only that, visit the artist and jewelers in New Zealand and Australia. I've come to notice that they have such a different and fascinating aesthetic, the way they arrange materials and use them is distinct and I always enjoy finding new artists.

Pieces of Eight is a gallery in Melbourne that represents some of the artists I find in intriguing. They also have a blog which I read on occasion.

I'm really digging Justin Austen's geometrical jewelry.
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Wednesday, January 6, 2010


I'm in LOVE with the images of Belen Mana's Pachanga book. If only I could afford it! She took photos of moths in the Central American rainforest inspiring her team to create this book of nature's patterns.

PS - sorry for the crappy copy of a photo.

Interesting that Pachanga means party! Pin It

It's business time

No not that kind of business time (reference to Flight of the Concords episode) which is very hilarious but more of craft business and learning more about how to create a sound and smart business plan.

That's one of my many goals this year. I recently purchased the business planner book, Craft Inc., which is incredibly awesome for the way it organizes all of the tools a crafter/artist needs to make it in the business.

With the free time I have this semester and summer, since I'm going to school part time I'm investing more of my free time to creating smaller and lower priced work to sell in addition to creating an etsy shop.

I have to credit Megan Auman and her several websites, she has a great business mind and model that I admire. She most recently released her craftMBA business blog several days ago and I'm already learning from it, check it out: www.craftMBA.com. Pin It