Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Birthday Blues

More Blue Goodness

Today’s my official birthday! Last weekend, I had a party (see here for blue cake: )

Last Friday, I had even more blue goodness. I was able to take some comp time from work and go to a gem show. http://www.intergem.net/

I bought Lapis Lazuli from three vendors there. Now then, how should I handle money with this project? Most if not all Lapis comes from either Afghanistan or Chile. I doubt I’ll be going to either place in four years. Anyway, the prices are listed with each entry. As always, click on an image for an enlarged view

Here’s a the remaining samples I bought in Canada. It is from Chile. I wetted them so you can more accurately see their color.

Here’s the polished stones I bought from Gems Stones of Africa. They were $5, and as you can see, had a lot of calcite and other non-lapis in them. Still, they’re pretty. I think they also had better grades, but they were more money of course, and since I didn’t need polished rocks, I kept searching. http://www.gems-stones.com

Here’s the start of some either really large buttons, or very garish earrings. I bought these from C&C International for $6 a piece.

Finally, here’s a small number of the pound or so of rocks that I bought from John E Garsow for $70. He & his wife were the most helpful at the show. He had three grades to choose from. I was going to get the highest grade, but when I told him it was to crushed into paint, he told me that I could get some really nice but small stones in the 2nd & 3rd grade bins for much less. I spent about 20 minutes sorting out the best ones, and he threw in a couple more after weighing them (to offset the water & because I bought so many I’d guess). He even gave up his chair so I could spend the time needed sorting without hurting my back. I asked him if he had any other ideas for paint, and he though ‘pristine’ or some type of Magnesium oxide might make a good white. I bought $5 from him, and will post it if the results are good.

Next step, crush & add oil or egg yolk (for tempera paint)!

Looking forward to your opinions on how to deal with money for an art from scratch project. Offset it by doing community service @ minimum wage equivalents? Other ideas?