MysticSwan's Bio | Shop Home

MysticSwan

Location

Midland, MI, United States

Quick Blurb

Imagine visiting a world filled with faeries, dragons, mermaids & more. That is where I find myself while creating jewelry.

Interests

Lost Wax Casting
Sculpting
Fantasy Themes
Mystical Themes
Faeries
Dragons
Mermaids
Unicorns
Spirit and Totem Animals
Being Out in Nature
Hiking
Photography

Skills and Techniques

As a fine art major I've been drawing since I could hold a pencil, I now use that skill as the basis of the designs that I sculpt out of wax, which are then cast using the lost wax process. I've been teaching this creative process at the Midland Center for the Arts for over 15 years and have also had a solo exhibit there. My work has been featured in Lapidary Journal's Art Jewelry Magazine.

Get to Know

As a lifelong artist I've worked in a wide variety of mediums; including graphic design, drawing, painting and textile arts. Since 1993 I've been combining and refining these skills in the creation of jewelry.

The process begins by creating sketches of an inspired idea. Individual pendants may feature a single figure while more involved necklaces and bracelets tell an entire story, either way it all starts with a drawing in my sketchbook.

To bring my own fairy tale to life primary figures are combined with a background and secondary elements that help tell my story; animals and birds, castles, trees, faerie houses, tree men, vines, flowers, rocks, waves, celestial elements, or whatever else may fit within the story that I want to tell. The completed design is reduced to the intended size of the finished piece of jewelry then used as a template as I start to sculpt in wax.

The wax sculpture is the most time consuming part of the process, it's very important to me that everything is as lifelike as possible; anatomy, proportion, facial features, and fine detail (scales and feathers are applied one at a time). While I stay true to my original concept some design changes naturally occur as the design evolves from a 2-dimensional layout to a 3-dimensional sculpture. When the wax sculpture is complete it is cast using the lost-wax method.

Casting includes mixing plaster to pour over the mounted wax sculpture, firing in a kiln for approximately a 24 hour burnout, melting the metal with a torch and casting with a vacuum assist machine. After casting the excess metal is removed, first by hand saw and then by grinding. This is followed by several levels of polishing with the application of a patina along the way. The process is time consuming and meticulous, but also a labor of love. Although the overall design, realistic representation and detail of my work are of great importance, they would mean nothing if not for the story and energy behind each creation. The figures and other design elements combine to give each piece its own individual essence and a glimpse into a mystical world. I hope that you will find my jewelry not only beautiful and unique, but also sense an undefined positive presence surrounding each item . . . or, if you prefer, you can simply think of my work as faerie tales, illustrated in silver and sometimes gold.

Bio Photo Gallery