All of the Lake Superior gemstones and beads such as Thomsonite, Isle Royale Greenstone (Chlorastrolite), agate and beach stone that we use in our earrings are found and released by the waters of Lake Superior. They are never mined, which can destroy the beautiful land and rocks on the shore. I feel if they are meant to be found the Lake will gift us with them. All of these stones are hand-drilled which is very time-consuming and difficult, especially the stones drilled length-wise. The beads are often broken in the process and this can also destroy valuable diamond drills. The most difficult are agate, granite and the numerous other harder or fracture-prone stones such as Prehnite, Jasper or Amethyst. The retail cost to have a individual stone drilled commercially is approximately $20 which adds to the cost of our work.
Textures are very important to me as they represent the human mark. The textures you see in my metal work are often done in fine silver (as well as pure copper) which is pure and quite soft so that I can impress delicate textures into them such as Minnesota White Pine needles, White Cedar and even Redwood Needles and many other naturally-found textures. You will also see me using simple hammer texturing. I "move the metal" and then leave the impressions in the metal if I find them interesting. You will find very little polished surface in my work. I prefer to emulate a look of antiquity, as if it had been unearthed from a magical ancient trove.
White Pine Needles
Tool-carved neo-nordic impressions done in a “stream of conciousness” manner
THE HUMAN MARK
You will also often see carvings of images that appear much like the ancient marks made by early humans. I call these neo-nordic impressions, originating from inspirations I feel in my environment as well as images I was moved to emulate from extensive travels in my homeland of northern Scandinavia from pre-historic stone carvings and paintings. I had always been fascinated by Native American imagery such as petroglyphs and such, but never felt that they were ethically my images to use. After finding my own peoples’ ancient markings, it has opened a whole new dimension to my work and creativity. In my opinion, the early or first ancient mark was a simultaneous culmination of both spirituality and creativity. Humanity creating beauty and truthful expression to honor the Creator or Spirits.