THERELATIONSHIP OF NATURE BEAUTY AND JEWELRY DESIGN
Natureas an Inspiration for Jewelry-Design
CourseName and Number
Theessay covers the essence of nature in the art of jewelry design. Itcovers the significance of jewelry to human life while identifyingthe early forms of jewelry. It compares early and modern ways ofjewelry production as well as the craftsmanship that comes along withjewelry design. The essay covers the design concept ofnature-inspired designs while outlining the relationship between manand nature. The article also includes the role of man inenvironmental conservation about jewelry design and how theenvironment inspires a man to create stylish designs. The articleends by explaining the role of nature and inspiration in the art ofjewelry design. The composition has been prepared by doing a thoroughresearch on jewelry design and has used various images to show offthis great art.
Table of Figures 5
Thesis Concept 6
Uses of Jewelry 6
The craftsmanship in Jewelry Production 7
Design concept of Nature-inspired Jewelry Design 8
Relationship between Humans and Nature 9
Jewelry Design and Environmental Conservation 10
Getting Jewel-design Inspirations from Nature 12
Comparison between Organic and Geometrical Shapes in Jewelry Design 13
Essence of Nature in Jewel Design 15
What comes first: Inspiration or the Artwork Itself? 16
Jewelry(or jewelry) refers to small, durable articles that are worn onclothes or the body for personal adornment. Jewelry covers a widerange of ornaments such earrings, necklaces, rings, bracelets. Peoplehave been wearing jewelry for a very long time, with the oldestjewelry coming from Egypt and dating more than 75000 years. Amongother ancient materials used to make jewelry include perforatedostrich eggs, stones and animal bones and teeth. In southern Russia,ornaments made from mammoth tusks have also been found. Withincreased civilization, a man later used metals such as copper, gold,and bronze to make jewelry.
Jewelryhas had many uses, with the most common being adornment. However,besides this, jewelry possesses a very wide range of use. The uses ofjewelry cut across personal uses as well as public uses. Jewelry hasbeen used for body modification. For example, one may use jewelry toreplace body parts such as teeth. Communities such as the Padaungwomen use jewelry made of golden rings to elongate their necks,though the practice has seen a decline due to the health effectsassociated with it.
Jewelryis also used as a way to store wealth or investment. Jewelry madefrom precious and expensive material is used as an investment, whereone may opt to trade some amount of money to jewelry with the sameworth. Jewelry is also used as a means of awarding. This practice iscommon in the sports industry, where gold, silver, and bronze are themost common types of medals. Jewelry is also worn as a means tomaintain tradition, for example, as a in a family. Such objects arecalled heirlooms and are passed from generation to generation.Jewelry may also be used as a means to show one’s status. Anexample of this is wedding rings, which are used as a sign of beingin a marriage. The use of rings has been in use for a very longperiod, and has come to be an essential part of a wedding.
Jewelrymay also be used as a way to express one’s personality, where theirchoice of jewelry makes a huge impact on how they feel aboutthemselves. People that are into gothic music, for instance, may optto use dark-themed jewelry. Jewelry may also be used to show one’ssocial status, where more expensive jewelry such as those made fromgold, diamond or gem are used to show those in higher classes. Royalentities also wear ornaments to show their royal positions. Kings andqueens, for example, use crowns to show their royal status.
Thecraftsmanship in Jewelry Production
Thevarious uses of jewelry, therefore, call for a distinct skill in thedesign and creation. Jewelry work involves all the activitiesinvolved in the sourcing, design, manufacturing and processing. Theseactivities may further be broken down to include cutting, shaping,and polishing of the jewelry. The skill require a lot of intelligenceand creativity, where the most creative and skillful designs make akilling to the artisans and jewelry dealers. It is this creativitythat is used to add value to the raw materials that are used to makethe jewelry. No boundaries being lying on the creativity of makingthese ornaments, the artisans or jewelry makers can get inspirationfrom anything (Wiseman). This ingenuity may be influenced by manyfactors such as the themes of production, price, color, material thatis in use, season/time, the wearer’s comfort and the target market.
Factorssuch as color are dependent on the user preference as well as thematerial that is in use. Materials such as gems and metals usuallyhave a fixed color, due to the luster that comes with the materials.Other factors such as target market may be influenced by season, forexample, seasons with lots of festivities such as summer. The targetmarket is a factor that depends on a particular group, which tends toshow more interest in jewelry. Women, for example, tend to show agreater interest in jewelry as compared to men. This may beattributed to their distinct and insistent sense of fashion asopposed to men.
Itis perhaps, the theme of production that will carry the most amountof weight in this paper. Different inspirations give rise todifferent kinds of jewelry design. An artisan`s creativity onlylimits these inspirations. Design themes may come from varioussources such as man-made features, historical sources, symbolicsources, religious/spiritual sources, conceptual sources, and naturalsources. The latter is perhaps the most used, where designers usetheir experiences with natural resources to come up with creative andbeautiful designs.
Designconcept of Nature-inspired Jewelry Design
Naturehas endless features which one may imitate to create interesting andgreat designs. Features such as animals, insects, plants, flowers oreven aquatic life have given exciting jewelry designs for many years.Designs from these inspirations often seem to carry people’sinterests and never to go out of fashion or demand (Mazoleni) Thematerial used to create jewelry may not be such a factor, though itdoes depend on how one’s willing to get deeper in the pocket. Thedesigner’s concept of creativity has a huge impact since it is thedesign that talks more about the jewelry’s beauty.
Figure1.0: Nature-inspired jewel designs. Image source:http://vuing.com
Thisis because the design concept remains bold in all aspects of jewelrydesign, despite the kind of material. The mystery, simplicity, andcreativity that can be attributed to nature-inspired jewelry designsgive rise to a very wide variety of concepts. The concepts may cutacross the use of wood, such as African Ebony, nuts, seashells,crystals or precious stones. Recent years have the use of materialssuch as glossy plastic or specially prepared paper, which also servethe purpose of conserving the environment – the same Mother Naturewho inspires the best of jewelry designs.
Relationshipbetween Humans and Nature
Tofully understand the craftsmanship that comes along withnature-inspired jewelry design, one has to understand man’srelationship with nature, and how one indulges with it findinspirations and learn from nature. Nature sustains man and grantshim everything that he needs in life. Nature refers to the physicalforce that influences the existence of animals, plants, andlandscapes. Nature had existed long before man came to be, which canexplain why it holds everything that man would need to survive. Itis, for this reason, that man has responsibilities over nature andnot the opposite. The man has the responsibility to conserve nature,which may be termed as a Commonwealth of everything that has life onearth.
Itis nature that sustains man in many forms, physically, mentally andspiritually. Nature is beautiful, and it is this same nature thatbeautifies man. Therefore man can only be beautiful if heacknowledges that nature itself is a beauty. How else would oneinterpret man’s desire to go to as far as digging deep into theearth, just to get materials for his personal adornment? This,therefore shows that man’s relationship with Mother Nature isdependent, but nature being on the upper side. The man has theresponsibility to preserve nature since nature will always provide.It’s nature’s nature to provide!
Despiteman’s need for personal adornment, he has the responsibility to doit in a way that does the least harm to Mother Nature
JewelryDesign and Environmental Conservation
Amongthe noblest thing that man would do is, perhaps, to preserve theenvironment. With the advancement of human civilization,characterized by intense industrialization, the environment hassuffered the hugest blow on all angles: the atmosphere, aquatic life,and the soil. It is for this reason that man should strive toconserve it, as a way of healing Mother Nature’s wounds as well aspreventing anymore that would be experienced in the future. To dothis, man has to devise ingenious means to survive, while stillfulfilling his desires. Use of jewelry has been there for thousandsof years and is not ending anytime soon. The incorporation ofenvironment preservation and jewelry designs has seen the creation ofexquisite and creative designs. This type of revolutionary jeweldesign has incorporated many materials which would otherwise harm theenvironment. Among these materials are paper, plastic, and glasswhich have been known to create the most amount of harm to MotherNature (Beatley)
Designershave therefore engaged their creativity to adhere to ethical jewelrydesign. Ethical jewelry design refers to the design and processing ofeco-friendly jewelry. Ethical jewelry designs seek to promotesimplicity and use less of everything and prevent wastage ofresources, say energy or water. This kind of design has also meantthe use of recycled or recyclable materials. Paper use, for example,has been an excellent way to conserve the environment, while stillcreating very beautiful designs.
Figure1.1. Paper-bead jewelry.
Recycledplastics and glass are also used to make beautiful designs,exploiting the different textures and colors that come with thesematerials. These materials are non-biodegradable and as a result,cause the largest amount of pollution. Due to rapid accumulation ofthese waste, they are cheaply available. Plastics significantlyaffect the environment, polluting the air, water bodies as well asall life forms that live therein. Similarly, glass is sustainable,virtually inert, recyclable and beautiful. Recycling of glass doesnot lead to loss of purity and therefore creates quality recycledjewelry. With adequate skills required to convert this waste intogold, designers can make significant earnings as well as conserve theenvironment.
Figure1.2 Earrings made from glass
GettingJewel-design Inspirations from Nature
Therelie no boundaries when it comes to nature and how much she caninspire one’s creativity. It is nature that gave rise to the use ofjewelry, where the first ornaments ever to be discovered were craftedfrom natural materials, over 75,000 years ago. These ornaments weremade of beads, which suggested the use shells to make jewelry. Earlyman used materials such as seashells, shells from ostrich eggs,stones and animal teeth and bones to make jewelry. In Kenya, beadsdating more than 40,000 years and made from ostrich eggs have beendiscovered. The Maasai, who are among the communities that showexquisite heritage and cultural identification originally used shellsand seeds to make beads. They also used porcupine spines to makeornaments and hair from elephants as threads. Though these materialswere later replaced with better beads due to inter-continental trade,they have maintained their colorful thematic decorations that arecelebrated all over the world. To date, these materials remain aninspiration, but value is greatly added, thanks to technology. Modernman can now come up with an extensive variety of jewelry designs,both complex and simple.
Limitedby one’s imagination and creativity, almost every part of naturecan provide inspirations for beautiful designs. A designer may simplygo out for a walk or a hike and come up with great designs, dependingon one’s indulgence in nature. Different samples can be picked upwith some involving simple materials such as grass. Gardens orforests also give inspirations for jewel designs, adhering to varioustypes of leaves and flowers that plants have. Rocks may also be usedgiving considerations into the different textures that come withrocks. With nature, there is always something to see, discover andlearn from.
Modern designs inspired by nature have seen better, colorful andcomplex designs. Although most jewelry are made in factories,passionate jewelers mostly opt for hand-crafted jewelry since theyseem to connect with the process and in the end, come up withexquisite designs. These craftsmen prefer small but crafty(creatively designed) jewelry. Many modern craftsmen have studied theinteraction that the body has with jewelry, and as a result pushedthe limits to come up with more comfortable, indulging and wearablejewelry.
Comparisonbetween Organic and Geometrical Shapes in Jewelry Design
Organicshapes, in this concept, refer to irregular and curvy shapes whichexemplify natural objects. These shapes often give a feel ofsincerity, impulsiveness, freedom and natural occurrence. Geometricalshapes, on the other hand, refer to shapes that are made my man inrelation to solids, lines or dimensional analogues. These shapes areusually rigid, stable and sometimes complex. In as much as either cancome up with exquisite designs, organic shapes create more fluid andindulging designs. Shapes have a huge impact on a piece of jewelrysince this element of the design is what people instantly noticewhenever one is in sight. They add interest, and one is thuscompelled to analyze the entire composition of the piece of jewelry.Jewelry lacking a creative element of shape usually suffer a lack ofcontrast, and as a result, interest is lost.
Geometricshapes suffer a relative lack of spontaneity as compared to organicshapes. This is because organic shapes usually come with a broadrange of design ideas, and can exemplify very many elements ofnature. Organic shapes can symbolize birds, fish, insects, figural,celestial and floral objects, to mention but a few. Jewelry thatsymbolizes the above seems to not only catch the eye but also addmeaning to a piece of jewelry. One may choose to use jewelry thatemploys these designs as a mean of personal identification. Skywatchers and astrologers may, for example, use jewelry thatsymbolizes celestial bodies, such as the moon.
Differentorganic shapes also seem to blend well since the primary theme ofnature is maintained. This way, one can easily have an asymmetricalpiece of jewelry which would still catch the eye. For example, beadsof different colors, sizes and shapes may be used in a necklace andstill look stylish. The color and irregular rhythms that are usuallyused all seem to blend substantially, influencing various impacts dueto the visual interest and texture that is created (Heller). The useof different organic shapes and sizes creates a contrasting feel inwhich an observer gets more interested in the piece of art.
Figure1.3: Necklace that employs organic shapes
Thescope onto which one may use shapes is not limited. A creativedesigner may also blend the two shapes together to come up with aneven better design that employs the pros of using each.
Figure1.4: Bracelet employing Organic and Geometric shapes
Essenceof Nature in Jewel Design
Many artists and (jewel) designers have drawn lots of inspirationfrom nature. Nature always has something to teach us and therefore,it plays a very crucial part in the design and any artwork. Fromnature, man can create a cultural and personal identity. Theseidentities influence a person’s entire life. It is this beauty andenergy of nature that shapes our lives and shapes our artisticspirits. Man cannot do without art and similarly cannot do withoutnature. Through activities such as leisure, man can interact withnature and learn more. Acquisition of skill (in this case jewelrydesign) therefore calls for the application of these lessons fromnature.
Arthelps us open our eyes and appreciate nature. In other words, artcreates beauty. This, however, is not its sole aim. One can learnwhile addressing key issues in the environment such as conservationand sustainability and bio-diversity. Art helps in spreadingawareness about these matters. Art helps in expressing culturalvalues and preserving heritage by showing off the diversity in humanlives. Art thus helps man reconnect with nature while playing a greatrole in taking care of things that man shares a connection to. Inan era characterized by advanced technology, a man may fall bait intoforgetting how susceptible he is to various forces of nature. Art canhelp rekindle the connection with nature while becoming moreconscious of it. It is for this reason that nature is by itselfindispensable in artwork and jewelry design. Nature needs to be feltand that is probably why everything that mimic’s it will alwayscarry the day. Man needs nature to sustain his art, and it’s thatsame art that man needs to express his imagination and to entice hisdreams. There’s constant inspiration in nature, but only to thosewho look for it. If art is here to stay, then Nature is twice asindispensable.
Whatcomes first: Inspiration or the Artwork Itself?
Designersoften make exquisite jewelry, catch eyes and even win events, all toappreciate them. The designers craft this jewelry from theirimagination and profound inspiration. It would be right to agree thatan exquisite design owes it all to the inspiration. It is thisinspiration that creates a vivid image of what the end-product willbe. It’s then the work of the mind to employ all the craftsmanshipthat one would offer, and come up with the physical piece of art.
Manyartists may credit their successes to hard work and lots ofobserving, probably with a strict schedule to have the above. Greatdesigns don’t just happen. They are dreamt, imagined, planned andthen tried. Most success happens when they try out a combination thatoften involves Finding inspiration, trying out and testingcreativity, growing one’s vision and identifying with a personalstyle [ CITATION Ala13 l 1033 ].
Toachieve an inspiration, one, therefore, needs to employ a lifestylethat allows for inspiration. This may not be easy, given the intensebusyness that one may have. However, an inspiration-friendlylifestyle is achievable when one can prioritize on an importantmatter. A designer may, therefore, prioritize on offering the bestdesigns possible. How would this be possible? Only by making surethat inspiration is a priority. Inspiration will give one a chance toimagine of good designs. These imaginations will then be turned intophysical achievements. This is a personal quest which every designershould have (or possibly have). It is the inspiration that keepscreativity alive, helps one fulfill curiosity and in the end, come upphysical proof of these dreams.
Inspirationrequires a lot of peace and to achieve this, many designers opt tolook for places with the most remoteness. Remoteness offers ideasthat people do not see every day, and approaching these placesusually cause one to wander into indulgence, while keeping an eye onto every surface. These unique ideas then need to be work on andapplied to come up with exquisite designs. It should, however, benoted that besides nature as an inspiration, one may need to lookforward to their mentors or people who do better in the same field.This offers a different kind of motivation called externalmotivation.
Anyonecan make elegant designs, but how do you keep making them?Inspiration.
Man’sdesire for personal adornment is unending and has been man gone toextreme heights, just to decorate themselves or their surroundings.Nature is by far the most beautiful gift that man has been given.Nature is not selfish with that beauty. It for man to appreciate itand to worship it. Mother Nature has helped in the making of elegantjewelry designs she inspired the first man and continues to do this.
Briot,Alain. "Finding Inspiration." 17 october 2013. luminouslandscape.14 December 2016<https://luminous-landscape.com/finding-inspiration/>.
Beatley,Timothy. Biophiliccities: integrating nature into urban design and planning.Island Press, 2011.
Mazzoleni,Ilaria. ArchitectureFollows Nature-Biomimetic Principles for Innovative Design.Vol. 2. CRC Press, 2013.
Heller,Milton J. "Design for a jewel stone or an article of similarnature." U.S. Patent No. D69,884. 13 Apr. 2011.
Wiseman,Jake. "Cutting tool for aiding removal of the wrapping ofcompact disc jewel cases." U.S. Patent No. D424,397. 9 May 2011