Decided to show the bead necklaces I make…I just enjoy stringing together interesting beads and wearing them. It’s often not a permanent arrangement, as things are very easily re-strung according to whim. But it’s a very relaxing pastime and quite meditative….except when the difficult bit of finishing up the findings has to happen. That can become a little stressful, but there’s always the delight at admiring the complete necklace, and then wearing it. Happily, I have a really large collection that’s been gathered over 20 years. Occasionally I get a “bead purchasing frenzy” and am compelled to buy a few more. But I certainly have more now than I’ll ever need. I’ll post up the pic of my favourite beads today. They are 4 Cornaline d’Aleppo beads strung simply with a few cheap beads between. I have a few collectables but most are just glass from various places. The four deep red beads were made probably around 1820 in Venice and were trade beads either in Africa (trading for ivory) or in the Hudson Bay area (traded for beaver pelts, mostly)….6 Cornaline d’Aleppos could buy a beaver skin. These beads are also called Carnelian white hearts, as they were thought to look like red carnelian. They’re made by the process of forming a white /yellow or ivory coloured base, and then winding the translucent deep red glass around the light coloured core. The deepest reds were favoured by Venetians and were highly prized. The red glass made around or just after 1817 had some gold in it, but later beads used selenium when gold became prohibitive in price. Because of where they were traded, they were often called Hudson Bay Trade beads. Some arrived with Russians across the Bering straits and came to Hudson Bay in that manner, but the majority came with the English. Many beads made in Venice from the 1400’s on were used as trade beads. The business was massive….hundreds of tons of trade beads were produced over a 500 year period. The oldest bead of my four is the one on the left; it’s probably around 200 years old, as it has a yellow centre. Later ones tended to have white centres. Here’s the pics.
I like all these points…in my opinion these are the essentials needed for a good and healthy life…go to my ARTICLE on this to read more information. So, very briefly, here they are.
#1 A safe home….everyone needs a place to feel safe; it’s essential for survival.
#2 Good healthy food.…eating healthily and drinking clean water will improve your physical health, and creating a little garden encourages us to eat well too.
#3 Some supportive friends…..we all need a loving family and/or group of friends to accompany us on life’s journey.
#4 Some exercise…..keep the body active; it also helps the mind
#5 Time for contemplation….take time out for yourself each day, preferably without devices!
#6 A job you like…follow your dreams, or try to improve on what you have.
#7 Find a hobby….we can’t work 24/7….finding something that interests you will help make a balanced life.
#8 Personal responsibility…..be responsible for your thoughts, words and deeds.
#9 Try to be kind….the old golden rule applies!
I’m continuing on the my semi abstract landscape theme…maybe I’m channelling my Dad! He was a wonderful watercolour artist, of atmospheric rural Australian landscapes. My landscapes are also about mood; a very atmospheric interpretation of the landscape which can be quite evocative of memories of visited and habited places. These quiet and contemplative works remind us to visit the silent meditative parts of our inner selves, and find solace there. They are a step beyond the chaotic everyday world. And this piece, “Forest Edge”, takes the viewer to a place (perhaps somehow remembered), where the brightness of the paddock leads the eye to the darker forest, of mystery. The light between the trees speaks of a place that is quiet yet not threatening…it’s maybe an invitation to enter our own psychic forest and do some exploring…or maybe just relax in it’s quiet embrace.
This month, and its getting on fast, being xmas eve, I’d like to talk briefly about the painting “Lakeland Garden”. I made this work earlier this year for an exhibition, which featured the idea of garden. This artwork is very atmospheric, and painted in muted hues. I love its mood…its very soothing and contemplative….the lake is merely suggested, and the trees are just suggested shapes. The vision is one of moving through a mist filled scene of a watery landscape….a beautiful piece to meditate upon.