In Amber's words:
I’m a California girl living in North Carolina. I learned to use my hands as a metalsmith/jeweler in craft school in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Learning a craft gave me a wholeness in a new way and offered a path to follow.
Karl Blossfeldt’s black and white photographs of plants and seedpods inspire me. The intelligence of shapes is endlessly fascinating and seems to point to the plant’s consciousness.
Years ago, my favorite poet told me that I must learn the names of the flowers, rivers and trees in my surroundings if I was ever to write good poetry. Those words sank in and indirectly led me to this work of studying plants. I think there is poetry in my work, it comes from continued observation and the premise that beauty has meaning.
ABOUT MY PROCESS
The seedpods, flowers, buds and twigs in my botanical series are collected from my walks in the woods near my home. They are lost wax cast silver and gold originals of the actual flowers and branches that I gathered. This commitment to "live casting" insures that I must continually forage for or grow in my garden new material to be cast.
The beauty of the lost wax technique is that each casting is entirely unique. By pushing the boundaries of what is considered possible with this process, I have captured very detailed organic matter, I think not yet seen before in metal. Each season, sprung from the live castings, I offer a number of new and limited edition production items.
Amber's studio, Mani Designs, is located at 15B Domino Lane.