My Top Six Pre Raphaelite Paintings for Jewellery Inspiration

The Magic Circle by Waterhouse, my favourite Pre Raphaelite painting.

The Magic Circle by Waterhouse, my favourite Pre Raphaelite painting.

Like any fantasy-reading, day dreamer of a girl, I was enamoured of Pre-raphaelite imagery, and this fascination has never left me. Sure the women are objectified in these paintings, and there is often a morbidity to them, but they are also powerful, substantial, and reflecting psychological complexities that rang true to me as a bookworm girl in the suburbs longing for a more interesting life.

Rosie wearing her Hymn to Ninkasi Necklace.

Rosie wearing her Hymn to Ninkasi Necklace.

I’m lucky to have beautiful friends who are willing to sit for me and model my jewellery– both Rosie and Catherine defintely channel the powerful, mysterious heroines of the Pre Raphelite’s.

When I design pieces it’s often with my customers in mind.  My work has a sense of humour but also it’s beauty is based in narrative– not unlike the Pre Raphealite paintings that inform my work.

Catherine wearing the Waterlily Tassel Necklace

Catherine wearing the Waterlily Tassel Necklace

The Angel of Death by Evelyn de Morgan

The Angel of Death by Evelyn de Morgan

These earrings were inspired by the angel of death, Azreal. I’ve posted the paintings which correspond to some of my designs below:  http://feral-strumpet.myshopify.com/products/copy-of-queen-bee-bindi-with-rose-and-moss-green

Night by Evelyn Morgan

Night by Evelyn de Morgan

The Angel of the Annunciation by Edward Burne- Jones

The Angel of the Annunciation by Edward Burne- Jones

Proserpine by Rosetti

Proserpine by Rosetti

By far the most famous Rosetti painting, I have often been influenced by the colours in his Proserpine, as well as the melancholic drapery.  My obsessions with garnets and their resemblance to pomegranate seeds probably can be traced back to this painting, too.

Another enduring favourite is Waterhouse’s A Mermaid.  The best boss I’ve ever had, Julie, back at the San Francisco State University Library Periodicals Department, had this postcard slipped under the glass of her desk.  Julie looked like the mermaid in the picture and everytime I see this photo I see Julie. I loved staring at it (Julie obviously had a lot of patience with my day dreaming self)– the tail wrapped so neatly around her, her am caught in mid-stroke combing her hair and that shell filled with her jewels.  I wanted to comb through it!  I love setting myself the challenge of making something you could find in that very shell.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s