Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Van Gogh Series: On the Bead Table

I have a new series I'm starting to encourage myself to finish a large bowl of 'half finished' earrings. I'm calling it my van Gogh Series. This painting by Vincent Van Gogh is known as Self Portrait with Ear Bandaged, 1889. There are several accounts of how exactly he lost a part of his ear. Most believe that it was not van Gogh's issues with sanity, but instead the result of a fight with his friend Paul Gauguin who sliced it with a sword.

I figured that as I dig through a little history, and dust off a few art books that I'd use them as inspiration to finish up some jewelry projects. I have this bad habit of creating a single earring because I love creating patterns, but I hate making the copy to finish the pair of earrings! So I have a bowl of singles. 

To kick off my series, I'm posting a very unusual piece (at least for me). It is called an ear cuff, but it isn't your usual ring cuff that wraps around the ridge of your ear. But instead wraps around that backside of one ear with beads hanging down from behind. 

This was a custom request from a bloggy friend of mine: Marcela of Fashionadictas. She asked if I thought I could make this piece, and well I just can not pass up an opportunity to try a new pattern. 

It was a bonus that it calls for only one ear! I don't have to make a pair for the other ear - ha! Sign me up. 

The trick for me with this piece was trying to figure out how to create loops for the several dangles coming off the cuff. I don't solder, but it just might be time to take a class to learn. My excuse up to this point has been that I have young children and don't really want a torch in the house. But my oldest is in High School, and my youngest just about to go to middle school. So that excuse might have expired. For now, I decided to use a pattern that might be considered abstract expressionist ... Miro comes to mind. I created a shape and hand hammered it in silver. My friend Marcela is an artist, and so I'm hopeful that she will appreciate the pattern and style of this piece.

I really don't think that in a million years I would have come up with this pattern. But then that is the fun of meeting all these new people in the blogosphere, and finding new inspiration to create with. Thank you Marcela.

Anybody else have a bowl of singles? Feel like taking the challenge with me? Over the next few weeks, I hope to make it to the bottom of the bowl. AND have several new pieces to list on my Etsy for the holiday season. 


Therese's Treasures said...

Hi Cynthia,
Wow I think the ear cuff is cool and not like anything I have see. It would be great to wear with a hair style that is in a up sweep on only one side.

About Last Weekend said...

Very cool. Agree with Therese. Or you could wear with a Girl with a Dragon tattoo hairdo, short on one side, long on the other. The classic bead with the rocknroll. I had a similar hairdo at varsity.

Marcela Gmd said...

Wow, wow, wow dear friend, this is a truly beautiful creation!!!!!
I love it, is very original! You are a great artist, congratulations!!!
Have a wonderful weekend!

Besos, desde España, Marcela♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

Jacquelineand.... said...

This is gorgeous and SO original! Have you pinned it yet???

Rose said...

What a unique piece! Beautifully done and I enjoyed learning about the process behind it, too.

Bobbie said...

What a cool creation - something this dramatic doesn't necessarily need a mate. The woman stylish enough to wear this would be stylish enough to rock a solo earring.

And I LOVE that you came up with such a great name for your singleton earrings in search of a mate. Sounds so much more intentional than "Unfinished Projects"!

New End Studio said...

Fabuloso! What a pretty earring and the start of a trend ♥

Kashmira said...


I bet Van Gogh wishes he had something like that instead of his bandage :)

Love it!

And me, I hate making the second earring too!
What is your friend going to wear this with?

Miss Val's Creations said...

Amazing design Cynthia. Marcela certainly has an eye for a totally new concept! I am sure she will love what you created. I look forward to seeing more of your van Gogh series!

Katherines Corner said...

very creative. I don;t have any singles....Thank you for sharing at the Thursday Favorite Things Blog hop xo

Carole said...

You did an awesome job and I'm sure your friend is delighted.

memoriesforlifescrapbooks said...

What a fun design!
Good luck with getting all your matching pairs done.

Christine Altmiller said...

i take a few days off from blog visiting and you start talking van Gogh! that is a good way to engage me again!!!
that ear cuff is so ABSOLUTELY COOL!!! i love how different and swingy it is!
i am pretty bad at making a pair of earrings too. i have singles laying around...eventually they might be pendants.

Duni said...

Wow, I haven't seen anything like this before! Another unique piece!
I like Therese's idea of wearing it with a side swept "do".
A couple of years ago I visited the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. One thing that I noticed is that almost all his paintings don't include any animals...I wonder why?!

Anonymous said...

How neat! It really is unusual, but looks so classy. I love it! And how do you end up with a bowl of singles? I don't make jewelry, but do know that I end up with a table full of UFOS as ideas strike and I simply MUSt move on- LOL.

Roshni AaMom said...

OMG!! I love that!! Coming here via Peanutlayne's blog! I love your collection!! If you could contact me, when you get a chance, via email, I would really appreciate it:

Lillian Connelly said...

I just came here from Life on Peanut Layne. Your work is beautiful. After looking through your pictures I think I want one of each! I will be looking for your etsy shop.

Kathleen said...

Very cool! My daughter had an ear cuff similar to this when she was in High School. Hers was all silver. I really like this style!

Splendid Little Stars said...

What a cool ear cuff!
You made a piece that looks like something Miro would have done? Will you show it?

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