My blogger friend Chrissy asked me to make a custom oriel pendant of her 4-footed companion, Kalei, and her 2-legged, long-distance love, Eric. I started out with a photo Chris had taken of her beautiful cat, Kalei. I saw her in Chris's Southern California garden. Chris's photos of her garden's blooms are breath taking, so I took a few of her blog photos and miniaturized them in my creativity software program. I also added these cool miniature dried flowers I found in Mexico (they are used by nail manicurists!). I made this oriel 3D, so that it seemed as if Kalei was looking through the flowers. The more I worked with this oriel, the more it seemed that Chris's boyfriend Eric needed his own oriel. So I used hand-dyed ribbon and more dried flowers on the back of Kalei's garden pendant. I added a sterling silver flower charm and Swavorski crystal beads as a dangle.
I also made this oriel 3D. Eric lives in Hawaii, so I placed him in front of a crashing sea and sprinkled a few stars around him just for fun. On the back I put a picture of Chris and Eric -- when they first met. I added Swavorski crystals in sea colors and a sea turtle charm by my friend Beth of Hint Jewelry (by all means check her Etsy store and blog out!). The oriel is almost charm sized, but I liked the intimacy of that.
This is another one of my personal art challenges: to create a minimum of one oriel pendant per week. You can learn more about my oriel pendants by visiting my Kentucky Girl Etsy Shop. I find personal and communal art challenges an inspiring disciplinary approach to fostering creativity. My personal art challenges ensure that I do not put my art on the back burner -- wonderful new directions emerge as a result of stepping over my ambivalence and tendency towards self-criticism. Community art challenges have been a wonderful means of discovering creative friends and positive feedback. Another wonderful benefit of the internet!