Saturday, 2 August 2008

Fossil Hunting

I happen to think this bead is one of the best I've ever made, and so it's definitely a "keeper". "Keepers" are those beads that you know you could just never sell, no matter what. I had a lovely session at the torch yesterday, and just before I finished, I decided to have a go at producing the bead that had been in my head since returning from holiday last weekend

We spent a fabulously sunshiney few days in Cornwall, and it was lovely catching up with friends. However, on the way to Cornwall we took at detour down to Charmouth in Dorset. We'd visited there last year, and I'd been eager to return. Charmouth is on the Jurassic Coast, and is the perfect place for fossil-hunting. So, armed with our hammers we set off to to find our own prehistoric relic. It's fairly easy to split the rock between its natural layers and find impressions of ammonites. It's not quite so easy to find an entire ammonite that has been washed out of the rock. But this time we did! It is tiny, measuring just 8mm in diameter, but perfectly formed. It has an irridescent sheen to it and I find it completely breathtaking.

As you can see, there's still a fair bit of sediment attached to it, but I'm too afraid to clean it up for fear of it completely disintegrating. What a tragedy it would be for it to have survived for 65 million years only for me to dissolve it in a bowl of water!

Anyway, back to my bead. (I can bring any conversation back to beads, I assure you...) Sometimes I see something, maybe a colour, or a shape, or a texture, and I can't settle until I've attempted to recreate it in glass. I've been like that since we unearthed the ammonite, and then yesterday my muse was in the right place to create something organic, and suddenly this fossil-like bead had created itself before my eyes. I can't really take the credit for it, because it honestly just sort of... happened.

So now I've awakened a new creative streak, and my head is buzzing with how I can take this in different directions. I'll let you know how it goes!


Anonymous said...

That is absolutely beautiful!!!!

Angie said...

Wow that is wonderful I love the way you have put the ammonite into the glass so when you make another and you want to part with it tel me know and I think I speak for all the girls on the UKbead forum when I say WOW

Anonymous said...

Stunning work as always. I love the story behind it though. Can't wait to see more of your creations.