Monday, December 21, 2009

Voyage of Discovery

The voyage of discovery lies not in finding new landscapes,
but in having new eyes....Marcel Proust.

On Day 21 of my 31 Days of Art Challenge to myself I've managed to list exactly two-thirds of what I had challenged myself to do, but through the lenses of new eyes today I see this not as a failure but part of many successes I can look back at for the year 2009.

My world, when looked at through these new eyes, becomes a cornucopia of discoveries that have been made about myself this year. Of who I am, where I've come from, and more importantly, where I am going and who I was meant to be.

I'll sit down in a few days and make a list of all these discoveries and I will celebrate the New Year, not with regrets for where I have been or the things I have failed to do, but with gratitude for the voyage that I am on. I will look at the accomplishments and give myself credit for the strength that it took to begin and stay on this journey and I will begin to look at the steps I will take in the future.

I will remember not to get overwhelmed with the big picture, but take each step and appreciate it as it comes.

The wax & wire brooch above, "Voyage of Discovery", was my Secret Santa gift to Jeanette Blix Ryan of Jeannette Blix Metal and Wire Jewelry. The Secret Santa exchange was hosted by Molly Alexander of Beautifully Broken Me. Molly is revealing each of the Secret Santas on her blog so be sure to stop by and see all the wonderful pieces that were made.

My Secret Santa was Jan Thomason of The Polka Dot Barn. Jan is a very talented paper artist, selling her work at two sites online. She was challenged to create outside of her normal media with this swap and she rose to the occasion brilliantly!

First of all I received the package in the mail and right away could tell that there was more then just a piece of jewelry inside. It was all I could do not to rip into all of these pretty little packages as soon as I opened the box, but I managed to contain myself while I looked for my camera and all the while my excitement grew.

I was spoiled with all kinds of great items that I will be able to use in my own work and ideas have been bouncing around my head for many of these items already. But as good as all that was, the real treasure was in the package with the pretty red bow in the center of the box.

Jan was able to translate her artistic style from paper to jewelry with ease, creating this mixed media necklace from many vintage items, including this center pendant she created from copper that has been etched with a hand design and combined with several pieces of vintage jewelry forming a mini wearable art sculpture. I love the center with the rhinestones lined up under a silver rectangle with what looks like shell or glass flakes under resin.

She has also combined many other pieces, each with some personal touch, the stamped scrabble tile dangle, the hand rolled polymer bead with the copper coil dangling off of it. There is even a couple of tiny images on paper dangling with a key. My pictures do not do her work justice, but you can see how much of herself she has put into the necklace and I am very grateful to be the lucky one to receive Jan's work ~ Thanks Jan!


  1. Geez, if I was only as good as you wrote.
    Thank you for your kind words - I am humbled by them.

    And, may I say, that brooch is rockin'. oh, my, gosh, it is so amazing. so eclectic - I'm in love.

    and, i hope that you'll be able to put some of these things in your box to good use - i tried to fill it with treasures that had a hard time leaving my hands!

    warmly, jan

  2. What a beautiful brooch you created for Jeanette! I am hoping for a chance to see it in person as we live close by.
    And look at those goodies you recieved in the exchange! Jan's packaging is amazing as is her eclectic necklace.

  3. Anonymous6:13 PM

    LOVE your brooch, Crystal! And, what a lovely piece you received.

  4. I have been away from blog land for sooooo long and feel like I have missed out on sooooo much. and, I see that I have, look at all of these fantastic encaustic pieces you have created! Absolutely wonderful! Breathtaking...

  5. Anonymous12:19 PM

    You got many lovely gifts, but your brooch is my absolute favorite. What a wonderful work of art! I hope you had a happy holiday.