About the Art:
Enameling is the art of fusing colored glass to a metal base (usually copper or fine silver). It dates back hundreds of years and can often be seen in Roman, medieval, and renaissance art, jewelry, and tableware.
In the enameling process, the glass is ground to a fine powder to allow for precise placement, and fired in a kiln to fuse it to the backing metal at about 1400 deg. F. Layers can be thick or thin, opaque or transparent, and can sometimes include other glass types for texture effects or fine silver or gold foil for a metallic glow (the Different Worlds-Blue Marble pieces in particular depend on this technique). Most pieces are counter-enameled on the back. having enamel on both sides of the piece helps prevent cracks during cooling.
Cloisonné is a specific enamel process where small compartments (cloisons) are made of fine silver wire, placed on the background, and then filled with the different colors of glass.
About the artist:
Hi! My name is Elizabeth and I am a jeweler and enamelist. Other words that I sometimes use to fill in “I am a(n)_______.” are “creative”, “bibliophille”, “native Texan”, “current Seattleite”, “cat-lover”, and “very curious person” (in more than one sense). I’m also the very first graduate of the Jewelry Design Certificate program at North Seattle Community College.
I love the feel of metal moving under my hammer, and I LOVE working with enamel and watching the powder turn to glass during firing. I also love carving, whether it’s wax for casting or acrylic for a reproduction of an antique hair ornament. I’ve been making jewelry for 15 years and my favorite element to work with is color, from all the autumn shades copper goes through as it heat patinas to the rainbow palette of glass in enamels and beads, to adding antiquing, stones or dye to acrylic pieces to bring out the details.
I draw inspiration from everywhere, but the older or more natural the source, the more I’m drawn to it. Favorite sources include illuminated manuscripts, medieval tapestries and ironwork, Celtic knotwork, Art Nouveau everything, and shapes or patterns I notice just walking around. I’m currently fascinated with antique and ancient accessories, and how to reproduce the richness and style in modern, durable materials. I try to infuse elements of whimsy and fantasy into my work, from coloring a flower a little unusually to (in the Different Worlds series) creating whole new planets. To me, imagination is the most important element of design.
I hope you enjoy my work! If you have further questions, or would like me to make a custom piece for you, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org