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Tag Archives: Central Illinois art fairs



Above is a fine silver floral ring that uses sage leaf molds I made from my own garden grown sage for the texture.  I have been thinking a lot about rings lately.  I love the challenge of ring making.  Below is a ring that is quite complex.  It contains a square shaped element that is constructed of copper and bronze which is riveted to a fine silver ring along with a hand lamp worked glass bead and a little silver disc to protect the glass during the riveting.  I will be at the Gazebo Art Festival in Macomb this Saturday to display these and many more.  The fair runs from 9am to 5pm and is Saturday only.






I am busy preparing for the Lincoln Art and Balloon Festival coming up this weekend and I noticed I had never photographed some rings I recently finished.  Designing rings has turned out to be a joyous endeavor.  I find that rings are much more three dimensional than other jewelry.  I don’t just mean that they wrap around your finger.  If you ignore the shank and just think about some item hovering over the top face of your finger the designs that come to mind are quite different than thinking of an element against the chest or dangling from the ear.  It has been creatively invigorating to make rings in a way I never expected.  There are so many possibilities for movement and so many tiny considerations that make a ring interesting.  The kinds of questions that I ask when I sit down to start a new ring are: what shape should the shank be, how wide, should it have texture, should both sides of the shank have texture, should they be the same or not, should they match the top element.  Of course I also have a theme in mind for the project like a leaf or a flower or a bowl shape.  The idea can evoke a mood or a feeling.  For the ring above I wanted something green, something that felt like walking in the forest.  The idea I wanted to bring to the fore was about calmness and peace.


I have been doing some copper etching recently.  A few of my results are shown in this photo.  I used nail polish as a resist and scratched it off where I wanted etching using a scribe.  This method is giving me nice crisp edges to the etched areas.  I am able to etch as deeply as I like because the nail polish is not beginning to loosen anywhere during the process like the paint pens and other ink resists I had tried before.  Mistakes are easy to repair before etching as well.  I love how easy it is to remove the nail polish afterwards too.  The etching bath I used for these is peroxide/muriatic acid.  I love how fast it works.

Tomorrow I will be bringing these earrings and all of my fine silver jewelry to Mackinaw Valley Winery for their Art & Wine Festival Sunday,July 21st , Noon to 6pm, FREE admission.  The winery is at Mackinaw Valley Vineyard and Winery | 33633 State Route 9 | Mackinaw | IL | 61755

25 artist’s booths will be in the new pavilion and the festival will be held rain or shine.
Local car clubs have been invited to display their vehicles.
Wine tasting will be available all day.
The Catering Company will provide food concessions
Ropp Cheese will be serving samples and selling.
Greg Williams will be performing throughout the day.
There will be the sidewalk chalk drawing area for kids and free face painting too.

Many of you have seen and admired the butterflies I have been making.  A customer wondered if I could make a dragonfly and certainly they are beautiful insects that capture our imagination.  I have made three so far.  The photo above is the largest of the three.  I am very pleased with the result.  This is a super busy time for me what with my son being home for the summer and art fair season being in full swing.  I have made so many pieces that have sold before I had a moment to photograph them!  I took a few shots this morning.  Below is another butterfly with a sleek body and head.