Sometimes I am inspired by my dreams, which are vivid and often revolve around themes of natural disasters. This is true of my Dust Bowl ring. I designed the focalpoint, a tiny enameled painting, to be reminscent of photos of the Dust Bowl, an ecological catastrophe of the 1930s when the U.S. midwest was plagued by massive, deadly dust storms due to overfarming and soil erosion.

I created the tiny image using watercolor enamels, a method of painting with finely ground glass and then firing it with a torch. The heat fuses the "paint" to the metal, making it permanent. The minature painting depicts an enormous dust cloud that threatens a stark horizon. In the fireground, telephone poles cast odd shadows.

For the setting of this piece, I wanted to create proportions that are a little strange and unsettling, much like the surreal lighting and giant plume of dust depicted in the scene. I fabricated an extra deep bezel which rests upon a minimal square shank, and set the enamal atop a step within the bezel. I also installed a hidden rattle inside the bezel so it makes a sound like windblown granules when it moves; the idea of this made me smile – like putting an ear to a seashell to listen for looming disaster rather than the sea.

"Dust Bowl"
Ring. Size 7
Watercolor enamel on steel, hidden rattle, sterling silver.

This piece is part of my Tiny Catastrophes series, a collection of limited edition, one-of-a-kind memento mori pieces that explore the fragility of life and our desire to prevent, explain, and control the uncontrollable.

Dust Bowl

Ring. Sterling silver, enameled steel



Looking for something even more unique? Contact me to design a custom piece just for you.
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a day ago

I have a small collection of antique poetry books from the late 1800s that I inherited from my great grandfather. Even before I could read, the engraved illustrations of gossamer angels and tempest tossed boats drew me into a grownup world of mortality and miracles. Those images inspired this miniature scene of a tiny shipwreck about to fall upon the cliffs of an unknown land. I set the enamel into a chunky pendant and etched the bezel with the Fisherman’s Prayer: “O God, thy sea is so great and my boat is so small.” . . . “Lost at Sea”, pendant necklace. Enamel, sterling silver. Hand painted, torch fired, hand fabricated. This piece will be available in a shop update soon. Stay tuned for exact date and time. 🖤 . . Look back in my feed to see how I paint my enameled scenes using finely ground glass and water, then heat them with a torch to permanently fuse the glass to metal. . . #instajewelry #instasmithy #instasmith #silversmith #Metalsmith #goldsmith #ladysmith #RioJeweler #SNAGmember #TESmember #metalsmithing #handmadejewelry #handmade #handcraftedjewelry #contemporaryenamel #enamel #enameled #miniatures #enameljewelry #jewelryaddict #jewelrycollector #jewelryoftheday #miniature #oneofakindjewelry #contemporarycraft #artjewelry #mementomori #artisanjewelry #showmeyourjewelry

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