Here is another one of my recent jewelry sets, featuring a mixture of various colors of tiger eye stone: the traditional golden, plus blue and red. I recently discovered the blue tiger eye at a gem show, and I have discovered that I like working with it even better than the standard golden color. Its chatoyancy is more subtle, only shifting its color in the brightest lights. But the elegance of the deep blue color is unsurpassed. I’m surprised I haven’t seen more jewelry makers take advantage of this amazing stone.
The yellow accent beads are agate, and a few silver beads and wire have been added for additional shine.
The drought (and a number of late freezes) have kept the wildflowers underground this spring in the area near our home. Not far away, however, where nature has been a little more generous, wildflowers are abundant. This pair was captured (photographically) on the same hike as this image.
Bees and butterflies of diverse species were busy doing their part to distribute the pollen from these many wildflowers, and I always enjoy watching them work, knowing the importance of their industry. These bright, busy scenes are not here merely for our pleasure; they also serve a great purpose: pollination. The pollinators get food they need to live, the flowers are fertilized to help ensure future flowers for us to enjoy, and we get food for out tables. It is no exaggeration to say this is the web of life in miniature. I am always thankful when I have the chance to see it first-hand, even when it’s as close as my backyard garden.
Edited in Lightroom and Photoshop Elements.
Asking me to pick my favorite gemstone is like asking someone to pick a favorite child. It’s a question that should be off-limits! There are so many fine stones to choose from, that it’s a travesty to be limited to one or two.
That being said, if I had to classify gemstones by those I most admire, malachite and lapis lazuli would be added to the top echelon. At a gem show last month, I was able to find both, including lapis that had malachite inclusions. Well, needless to say, I thought the two would make a perfect combination. I created an entire set using the stones, and made a pendant from a polished fossil (forgive me that I don’t remember the name of the specimen). I used hematite as accent beads, along with a little shining silver.
This has become one of my personal favorite sets. I feel the pieces have a simple elegance—and I need all of that I can get!
Comments welcome and appreciated!
We had another beautiful sunset here about a week ago, and I captured this lonely cloud on my way out to get some pictures of the moon with Venus and Jupiter. It seemed to be separated from its parent clouds, a little cloud orphan, racing off to be reunited with its family. Not a large cloud, but enough that the waning light of day captured its depth in a way that made me pause long enough to immortalize it.
Processed in Lightroom and Photoshop Elements, with texture added.
I’ve been jumping back into jewelry making after a bit of a slow down over the winter. I’ve been scouring bead shows and the internet for new and exciting beads, and I’ve been working on some new techniques.
This is one of my recent projects, in the line of what’s become my favorite style: mixed gemstones. The primary stones are autumn jasper (beige colored with orange flecks) and chrysocolla (green colored with darker inclusions). The pendant and earrings also feature a little wirework to give it an original style. The dark round accent beads are blue tiger eye, a luscious dark stone that displays its chatoyancy in the brightest lights. A few crystals are added to give the set a little more sparkle.
The necklace is heavy—these are very substantial stones, and you know you’re wearing some of nature’s finest stone creation! As part of trial and effort, I found that the earrings are a little too long to go with the necklace itself. I’ve since purchased some smaller autumn jasper beads and may switch out the larger ones to produce a better “fit”.
I’d love to know what you think! Comments and suggestions are always welcome.
I will be displaying more of my jewelry creations along with my “normal” nature-oriented photography. I hope you enjoy the mixture!
If you were wondering, I am still here. I’ve been editing photos between other projects, but I just haven’t been posting them. I will probably be making up for lost time very soon.
We can’t seem to break away from the drought here on flatlands. It wearies the soul to see life—not triumphing as you expect during its monumental comeback after winter—but eking out a meager living on rare rains and waters from the tap instead of flourishing under the typical April-May deluges.
On the other hand, as you drop down below the Caprock, there is a bit of a spring oasis still to be found. It will probably be ephemeral, and we have to enjoy it while we have the chance.
We went hiking this weekend at Caprock Canyons State Park, one such place where spring has managed to make its appearance. Not only was there green grass (and green mesquite), there were green leaves adorning wildflowers of every color, attracting to their petals every color of butterfly. It was a welcome contrast to the brown and yellow grasses we’ve come to get used to here. I snapped a few picturess of the red rocks that adorn the park, but the photos of the living things have attracted my attention much more. Here is one such example.
Edited, as usual, in Lightroom and Photoshop Elements.
Click on an image to view the gallery!
Today we were lucky enough here to be blessed with a rare phenomenon: a double halo of the sun. The primary halo (at 22 degrees from the sun) persisted for a while, but the second halo (perhaps truly a circumhorizontal arc, at 46 degrees from the sun) was far more ephemeral. (And much more brilliant!)
This is the first time I’ve ever seen such a display, as far as I can remember. I’ve seen a lot of single halos (but none brighter than this one–unfortunately I didn’t have my camera along when its rainbow colors were at their brightest), often with associated sundogs, but I don’t remember seeing it with this particular concurrent phenomenon.
While I studied a little of atmospheric optics in grad school, I’ve unfortunately forgotten much of it. Given the brightness of the primary halo, I’m wondering if that might actually be a circumscribed halo, as the sun was very high in the sky at the time. If there is an expert who can help me positively identify these features, I would love to hear from you!
Processed in Lightroom and Elements, as usual.