Where I live in North Wales, I have the mountains behind and the sea in front. The sky is never the same in two directions. And it changes all the time. Driven by the ebb and flow of the tide and the incoming weather systems as they sweep across the Irish sea to meet mountains of Wales. I feel strongly connected to my local landscape; the scale of the mountains and the open horizon give me a great sense of freedom, strength and energy. This sense of belonging, of feeling embedded in the landscape, makes me look closely at what is around me.
I have always loved collecting pebbles from the beach. These smooth round shapes form comforting contours as they sit neatly in your hand. These are the source of creativity for my resin pebble beads. In the beginning rockpools were my inspiration, peering into another world, seeking what was hidden. I cast clear or subtley coloured transparent resin with a variety of beach content; shells, seaweed, driftwood, pearls. They all find their way into my beads. The clarity of the resin allowed for play between the reflection and refraction of light. And the embedded contents would appear to move and change shape as the beads were turned around.
As the years have passed, I have made all sorts of pebbles. Some with bright tints, others with subtle hues, muted stoney tones and the glorious colours of heathers, gorse and lichen. The complexion of the landscape held in a bead.
I also love big bits of rusting metal left over from both the quarrying industrial heritage of north Wales and the still active farming community. Incredible colours emerge as rust takes hold and the metal degrades until it is itself incorporated into the landscape. All around are the characteristics of upland hill farming. Beautiful dry stone walls, kissing gates weighted with odd bits of stone or cast off metal scraps given a new lease of life. I look at chains, bolts, clips, and links to make functional means of attachment and closure for my jewellery.
I belong in this landscape, it inspires what I make and informs how I make it.