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How’s The Lockdown For You? Pt2

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Reflecting on Silversmithing as a career

Since I stopped being a full time Illustrator, as mentioned, I have been designing and creating jewellery. I have questioned the validity of this as a career in part because of the hard time I get sometimes on social media. But I guess this is because I sometimes, (too often), get involved in political arguments and adversaries will look for any ‘weak spots’ that they can exploit.

Art in its many forms when made into a career choice is fraught with issues. Are we just playing with paint, pixels or clay in a form of self-indulgence? I hate that I have to justify my existence as an artist.

Many people consider jewellery a luxury and of course if you had to choose between food and a piece of silver, it’s obvious what would take precedence. But I have been struck by how important the wearing of a ring or pendant, etc, is to some people. I create pieces that are inspired by Druidic lore which offers a particular meaning to the design of my jewellery. A ring with an oak leaf for example signifies resilience and strength.

Commissions

I enjoy working with a client to produce custom made pieces. For example I created this bracelet and necklace for a woman who wanted to celebrate the hare and its associated symbology in Celtic mythology.

preliminary sketch
raw casting in fine silver

I have created pieces for people who want to mark a particular landmark in their lives such as recovering from cancer or completing therapy.

I am always humbled by being asked to make wedding or handfasting rings.

Handfasting rings

Where next?

Despite the pandemic, orders have trickled in. But I will use the spare time to start to produce more items in bronze, including sculpture. I also intend to work on my fantasy fiction novel and create statues and jewellery based on that narrative. I’ll publish excerpts on this blog in the coming weeks.

The story is set against the Roman invasion of Anglesey in AD60, the annihilation of the Druids and the coming of age of the daughter of the Archdruid.

I was thinking of producing resin model kits, (‘Garage kits’) that people could put together and paint themselves. But then I thought about the environmental implications and considered bronze to be the better option. The images below were preliminary sketches for such a kit.

About Chris Petty
Chris is a Children's Book Illustrator turned Jewellery Designer and Sculptor. He is Inspired by Nature and Celtic Mythology.
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