At age 16, I designed my first ring from the red wax coating on Gouda cheese and cast it in silver. I was hooked! My journey in metal has evolved over the years to include forging iron, larger scale casting, etching, forming metal over stakes and anvils, soldering and construction etc.
Creating relationships / contrasts between natural elements has been a recurring theme in my work. I want the feeling of my work to describe motion and energy beyond the obvious!! When designing I like to incorporate unusual textures, different materials and metals to compliment the beauty of each in a striking way ; handmade paper and silver, copper and colored glass, bronze and marble.
The dichotomy of my work with jewelry, gems and my larger sculptures has challenged me to expand my vision as they have merged to become a combination of the two. Some of my smaller sculptures pair jewelry with the sculpture, adding a new and more personal dimension to the piece.
All of my pieces are one of a kind. Currently I am concentrating on commissioned jewelry or sculpture,(collaborating with clients melding their vision and mine, is one of my real joys). I do also still make pieces for the fun of it and participate in a few benefit shows a year.
Ellen was awarded a Bachelor of Fine Arts ,VCU, with a metal major and ceramics minor.
She is the past owner of Papillon Custom Jewelry in Old Town Petersburg,VA and Cobb Lane, Birmingham, AL , has taught jewelry at the Univ of Alabama, LFCC VA, and has exhibited her work in the US and Germany.