jewellery

Flora & Fauna: Featuring Jenny Pulling

 
Jenny Pulling
 

Stray Stones is the work of designer and metalsmith Jenny Pulling, of Kitchener, ON. Using a variety of techniques, and drawing inspiration from nature and geometry, Jenny creates bold, one-of-a-kind jewellery and accessories from copper, brass and sterling silver.

Her favourite techniques include piercing, riveting, etching, and reticulation.

Woodland Fox Necklace
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“The early stages of StrayStones began during the semi-nomadic years I spent in Latin America, where I was inspired by the many talented and resourceful artisans I encountered. Through these artisans I began to explore creating jewellery from waxed linen, wire, gemstones, and found objects like shells and seeds. Born from these creations was StrayStones; named for my early pieces that incorporated the 'stray' stones I had collected on my travels.

In 2011 I returned home to Canada, driven to expand on my skill base. I signed up for an introductory metalsmithing workshop, which introduced me to a number of basic tools and techniques, giving me the foundations to begin exploring the world of metalsmithing on my own.

Since then my skill base has continued to grow, and many of the techniques I now use have been self-taught.  There's been a lot of trial and error, but I love the excitement of experimenting with new designs and techniques.”

Jenny is one of nine Canadian artists invited for our Spring Exhibition Flora & Fauna Exhibition runs April 12 - 26, 2019

 
Jenny's studio
 

Flora & Fauna: Featuring Amber Aasman

 
Amber Aasman
 

I began creating jewelry from wood and epoxy resin in 2014. But my exploration and education in the arts prior to this had much to do with this new venture. In my emergent painting practice, I was exploring fluid paint media and epoxy resins, bridging the worlds of painting and sculpture. In my developing craft practice, woodworking, sculpture, found object art, and environmental arts all merge to inform the pieces that I make.

PROCESS

My work always begins with materials: unusual wood, bark, lichens, moss, and other natural fragments. After finding these little treasures on hikes and travels, they need to be dried for a period of weeks, months, or up to a year. When ready, I carefully arrange them in large molds, which I then fill with epoxy resin. This often takes several pours, allowing the resin to dry and seal the natural elements more slowly (for better clarity, multiple colours and layers). After several days I remove the block of resin and wood from the mold. Using woodworking equipment and tools, I cut out each pendant, earring and ring, making decisions as I go about where and how to cut, to get the most interesting effects. Then each piece is sanded up to 3000 grit, oiled, finished, and assembled into its final form.

Sandy Shoreline Amber Aasman
Dutch Moss Amber Aasman

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN

I create and market my jewelry under the name “Wild Blue Yonder,” a common phrase which deeply informs my work. The philosophy of “Wild Blue Yonder” represents an embrace of Canadian wilderness, natural beauty and endless possibilities. Each of my pieces are unique experiments, with undetermined outcomes and intrinsic wildness; microcosms of flowing water, moody skies and windswept landscapes. They celebrate endless possibilities, high horizons, and looking beyond what you can see.

WHY DO I DO IT

I have always been a bit of a scavenger. On trips or hikes, even as a kid I have always been compelled to find something interesting or different to take home with me as a keepsake. There is something very special about an object you find while travelling. It signifies a sense of adventure, specific memories, relationships, and a finite period of time. This sentimentality is what leads me to forage for unique bark, wood, and other natural items. While not always found on epic travels, even a locally-found object or reclaimed wood from local woodworkers is transformed and celebrated in my work. Paired with epoxy resin, which acts as a perfect preservative, these small fragments defy their own fragility, take new form, and can last a lifetime.

 
Amber Aasman Studio