Monday, October 31, 2011


A blanket of brouillard (a french word that took me some time to master pronouncing) rolled in yesterday.  It had the effect of turning down the volume on everything.  The harvest is in, the fields are turned with horizontal stripes that seem to elongate the wideness of the landscape.  Just earth and sky.  Elemental and stripped back.

October fields,  Cari-Jane Hakes 2011
Elsewhere today I had a helper,

and as the house began to quieten with the quickening darkness I began the Sketchbook Project 2012.

Friday, October 28, 2011

A Fabulous Friday Feeling

I love the sight of the little yellow La Poste van pulling up beside my postbox.  Today - much joy - no bills - just a package from the Art House Co-op  in Brooklyn, New York.  I finally signed up for the Sketchbook Project 2012 a couple of weeks ago.  Today, the sketchbook arrived!

The Sketchbook Project 2012
Last years sketchbook that I did for the 2011 tour (you can view it on-line HERE) took me on an unexpected journey.  When I began the sketchbook I really had no idea where it would end.  I used a narrative to structure the sketches and made it semi-autobiographical.  I must say, it really was a voyage of discovery.

I chose 'Transatlantic' as my theme from the list for the 2012 sign up page.  I have a feeling this theme will carry on pretty seamlessly from where the 2011 sketchbook ended.

Now, I just need to decide how to decorate the cover.  It's a perfect project for dark winter's evenings - I'm so glad it has arrived.  I can't wait to get started!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Musings on a Mercredi

The responsibility of needing to set an example for my two small boys weighs upon me.  Not heavily and not in a burdensome way but in a way that grounds me.  In a way that makes me think before I speak and act.   In a way that has me thinking at the end of every day 'I WILL do a better job tomorrow'.

Embracing the Present, Cari-Jane Hakes, 2011
So, while I hope that my example will inspire them, nurture them and help them become all that they can be there are times when I feel completely humbled by the example they set for me.

They don't hold grudges.  They can be told off and chastised for some misdemeanor but 2 minutes later they will be back at my side, smiling, asking about what I'm doing and if I can help find a lego brick.  No sulking, no recriminations, no looking back, no 'baggage' - just moving forwards with lightness and clarity and grace.  They just fling their arms wide open and walk forward.

They leave me wondering sometimes who is learning the most from this whole child / parent relationship!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Colour, Light and Gold.

As the days begin to shrink and shadow round the the palette outside begins to narrow and become all together more monochromatic...I declare it is time to surround yourself with all things pretty, colourful and golden!

Cari-Jane Hakes, Jewellery, 2010-11
I submitted these pieces for a potential Christmas selling opportunity.  They all have a warmth and golden tinge to them - perfect for shining a little light into the gathering darkness of the year!

Friday, October 21, 2011

A Fabulous Friday Feeling - Lost and Found

I lost this pendant 9 months ago.  I gave up and thought I'd completely misplaced it.

'At the end of the Day', necklace, Cari-Jane Hakes, October 2011
I found it whilst preparing for Paris, tucked away in tissue paper at the bottom of a box.  Much rejoicing and then a bit of gold leaf applied today which means that it is finally finished!

'At the end of the Day', back detail, necklace, Cari-Jane Hakes, October 2011
I think the back is just as pretty as the front.

I'll be listing it in the Etsy Shop over the weekend.

Bon Weekend to you all.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Last 5 Pins on Pinterest

Over on Pinterest I keep spotting some recurring themes.  One that has been around for a while....

dark painted walls!  I'm imagining that you could only really do this in a space that is flooded with light - and as this image shows, you also probably need to balance it up with some light coloured accessories.

I do believe this is a close up picture of some teeny tiny feathers - beautiful!  These little details really fascinate me.  The stuff that is there, all the time, under our feet - but can only be appreciated when we stop and look closely with our cameras or microscopes.

The next pin, more darkness, and a favourite quote of mine.  I often wonder if this is the French equivalent of the English speaking world's "My Way" (I'm amused to find that this song, made popular by Frank Sinatra, is actually based on a French song 'Comme d'habitude').

In passing, I should say that I highly recommend the film La Vie en Rose (2007) that goes some way to dramatise the life and times of the formidable Edith Piaf.

I'm finishing up today's pinnings on a lighter note...

a 'transparent' space that flows from living to stairwell to courtyard in an effortless sweep of light and bright!

And a little something from the Caroline Herrera Fall 2012 Bridal Collection. Simple, structured and classic.   That puts me in the mind to 'Dress for Dinner'!

If your on Pinterest and feel like sharing your last five pins - feel free to leave a link to your page in the comments.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

And the other one....

The beginning of this series started with labraodorite, the stone, and the stories surrounding its visual properties.

The ring makes visible the Eskimo tale surrounding the flash and 'light' that labradorite stones appear to hold within their opaque feldspar depths.  I projected one of the striations within this cabochon upwards (all the while trying not to become too mesmerised by its winking, lilting colour, oscillating from a deep sea green to ultramarine interspersed with flecks of deeper darkness) and created the 'shattered' surface.

The image of the Eskimo myth was in my mind when I developed this part of the design.  The Eskimo's spear striking down into the labradorite rock, so the myth goes, releases a portion of the light within the stone to roam freely in the sky as the 'Northern Lights'.

Geology, landscape and myth all woven into silver, carefully etched and pieced and soldered together.

It feels good to have these ideas finally made of something substantial.  They have hung like a mist in my mind for some time.  The story isn't over yet.  I think the Eskimos and their spears will be walking again over my workbench in search of more trapped light!

The Myth of the Aurora Borealis, ring, silver and labradorite, Cari-Jane Hakes, October 2011

Monday, October 17, 2011

Weekend Fishing - and what I caught in my 'net'

The boys fished..

and I did too. Although, I went off to catch colours and textures in my 'net'.

I'd say that was a pretty impressive haul, don't you think?
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