Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Meet the artists for the Paint Around

What is a "Paint Around" anyway? It can vary. Our five artists will paint under a tent on the lawn outside of the gallery. It is part musical chairs, part game show! Each artist will have 30 minutes to work on their painting before they have to switch canvases. Each painting will be painted from a different perspective. The results will be exciting to see.

We have five talented gallery artists involved this year. Below are examples of each artist's work and a little information on the diverse painting styles of these painters. I can't wait to see what they come up with!!

Nancy Noel May

Working in acrylics, award winning artist, Nancy Noel May, is constantly seeking the clear, vibrant colors and a strong source of light that are the prime elements of her work. A defined sense of place is of vital importance in creating a successful painting.

Nancy has collectors within United States and abroad.

Phil Meade

An oil painter and avid plein air painter, Phil loves painting the coastal light. His impressionistic paintings make you feel the atmosphere as if you were standing right there. Phil is represented in many fine galleries and has a following of loyal collectors.

Ann Hair

Ann Hair is a graduate of Daemen College in Buffalo, NY, with a Bachelor of Science in Art Education. Since 1998, she has been teaching art in the Wake County, NC elementary school system. Ann's work has been shown both locally and nationally. She has had her work juried into many shows and has received several awards. Recent work has been with palette knife using wonderful broad strokes and thick with paint.

Kristin Gibson

Finding seemingly endless inspiration in the organic shapes and hues of fruits, flowers and vegetables, Kristin's works begin as drawings with her paintbrush. With bold immediacy and working entirely from life, lines in a layer of paint jump-start a fluent process of color into color, wet paint into wet paint. Kristin is an artist not afraid of painting intuitively to get a spontaneous energetic look that is inescapable. Kristin's paintings hang in many fine art galleries. This artist is very active in her community and holds frequent demonstrations at her representing galleries and elsewhere. She is also active in participating in charitable events.

Jane Faudree

Predominantly painting in oil, Jane enjoys plein air painting to catch that freshness that only painting outside allows. An award winning artist, Jane's work has been consistently accepted in local and national exhibits and hangs in corporate and private collections throughout the U.S. and in Europe. Locally, Jane's oil painting, "As the River Flows" was used to make the poster used for the Pink Ribbon events in Wilmington this year.

Don't miss this one!
November 6, 11:00am - 1:30pm
Right here at Spectrum Art and Jewelry

Monday, October 25, 2010


Did you know that we have our own STARSONG jewelry collection? Designed and made right here at the gallery, we have incredible pieces! Necklaces, pendants, bracelets and earrings all unique and in a vast color spectrum of gem stone beads and pearls. We currently have the largest selection we have ever had. I wanted to let you know that we also have a great variety of STARSONG clip earrings. Clips are not always easy to find, and almost everyone has someone on their gift giving list that likes those "elusive" clip earrings. Now you know where to find them!

It's not too early to start your holiday shopping!



Last week Miriam Mayo brought in some of her old jewelry. Amongst her treasures was a blue glass necklace, a rather insignificant piece compared to the others. The beads were beautiful, but the silk cord stringing it together had become very frayed and was showing it's 40 year age. Miriam had inherited the piece from an aunt who had once traveled the world and probably had picked up the piece in another country. She admitted that she loved it for its color and sentimental value, but never wore it anymore. Star suggested that we restyle it into a wearable necklace. We took the single strand and made it into a shorter two strand piece. Interspersing it with small fresh water pearls and adding a complementary toggle clasp, it took on whole new life! We even had two beads left and made a pair of matching earrings.

This is a picture of Miriam taken just before she left here this afternoon wearing her "new" jewelry. I felt touched as she expressed her double delight, loving the new piece and enjoying the fond memories of her aunt.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Bowled over by Boulder

After more then 20 years, I'm still blown away by the mysterious nature of opal. One designer refers to it as the "captive rainbow". One type of opal that is especially fascinating to me is Boulder Opal. No it doesn't come from Boulder, Colorado. Boulder Opal refers to a special type of opal that occurs near Queensland, Australia.

Opal comes in infinite variety but there is one distinctive characteristic of Boulder Opals that gives them away. The presence of the brown ironstone matrix. In the area where these opals occur, there are ironstone formations that have cracks and small fissures. Opal filled those cracks in the form of a silicate gel which eventually hardened into brilliant crystalline opal. When cut from the rock with a natural backing of the dark colored ironstone, these opals flash with incredible colors. Also, boulder opals typically have an irregular surface where they were broken open along the seam of opal.

Even the thinner and sparcer seams of opal can be intriguing. Some boulder opals are more matrix than they are opal, but the colorful flash of opal peaking out through the brown ironstone is fabulous. Here is a particularly unique pendant we recently received that is sculpted to include both the beautiful patterns of the ironstone and a strong color seam of opal. The jeweler who created the mounting got extra creative and her freeform gold setting looks like something from the Jetson's. As usual, photos don't do these things justice, so if you can, stop by the gallery and I'll show you all the wonderful Opals we have on hand. Or click here to see a small selection on our website.


Monday, October 18, 2010


Blogging is a new experience for me, and I'm having great fun with it! It's a perfect way to let you know what's new at the gallery. We all have our own different styles and tastes, and SPECTRUM certainly offers a "broad spectrum" to choose from.

Because I have the opportunity to daily observe, try on, and savor all the pieces we have, I have developed my own preferences that I would like to share with you in a new blog entitled "Kathleen's Pick."
Today's Pick is from the TRIPPWORX STUDIO where Tripp Gregson lets his imagination run wild! I recently had the opportunity to meet Tripp's mother and father and they had wonderful stories of Tripp as a young boy making artistic pieces out of any found objects. They saved many of his drawings and sculptures made during those childhood years and still proudly display them! From what I just said, you may think Tripp is in his early 20's but I think he is 40 something with children of his own. However, he never lost that creativity he had as a child. It's alive and well and stronger than ever!

Tripp is famous for his fish, crab and lobster sculptures made from used license plates, road signs and odd pieces of metal. Having been "weened" on lobster, my favorites are his lobsters. They even have names like Trey and Effie! We also have a four foot long Marlin and a couple of sharks that hang from the ceiling. If you are looking for a piece of art that is FUN and definitely unique, these pieces are all that and more! In fact, if you have an old, sentimental license plate, Tripp will made it into a piece of fish art for you!

If you haven't seen this work, please come by, it will definitely put a smile on your face!

Have a great day,



Exquisite DAHLIA KANNER sterling silver jewelry has just arrived!

Dahlia is from Rhode Island, and is a graduate of the prestigious Rhode Island School of Design.
Her work is meticulous in execution and her designs are inspired from the natural elements surrounding her life in New England. I especially like her "wave" rings which can be stacked or worn alone. She contrasts her pieces using oxidation, matte and high polish techniques. We sold several pieces within a day of their arrival, but still have an excellent selection to choose from.

Friday, October 15, 2010


DREAMS OF WILMINGTON is near and dear to our hearts here at Spectrum. We have sponsored several fund raisers for them, having lots of fun in the process. They offer a rare opportunity for many young people who may not otherwise have the chance to participate in classes in the literary, visual and performing arts. For over a decade Dreams has educated and enriched the lives of so many children, we are fortunate to have them in our community. I'm enclosing a link to their website and would encourage everyone to take a look at the program, it's very impressive. Children are our future, and investing in them is a major key to that future.

Our Paint Around event in November will be another fund raising event for Dreams. On the 6th five of our artists, Phil Meade, Nancy Noel May, Ann Hair, Kristin Gibson and Jane Faudree will be working on a colloborative project where in the artist will rotate around five easels. The end result will be five unique paintings bearing the touch of all five artists. These paintings will be raffled off to benefit Dreams. Raffle tickets will be on sale starting on the sixth, and it will be the perfect day to stop by and cheer the artists on. It's an ideal time to visit with your favorite artists and see how they each work! Put the date on your calendar!

From the land down under...

Opals are the birthstone for October.

Star has an Australian contact who brings us some beautiful stones whenever he comes over to the states. Whether it's your birthstone or not, opals with their fire and lightning brilliance, make wonderful pieces of jewelry.

Ninety-five percent of all opals come from Australia, the other five percent from other areas including Brazil and Mexico. We just happen to have a pair of stunning Mexican Opal earrings. Their orange color is unique and so different from the more traditional blues and greens. Next time you are in the store please ask to see them, we love showing them off because they are so unusual.

For those of you interested in the folklore associated with stones, the opal is believed to have significant healing power. It is reputed to help the wearer find true love, and bring good luck!

I'm always fascinated by stories that people have about the magic they have encountered with certain stones. If you are looking for true love, wearing a beautiful opal necklace would certainly be eye catching, and who knows what might happen!


Thursday, October 14, 2010

What's old becomes new...


Recently a customer brought in a white gold, diamond and sapphire ring she didn't wear much and asked me to update the style. She preferred yellow gold instead of the original white gold and she wanted something much bolder. We chose a pretty classic approach with an Etruscan flavor in rich yellow 18k gold and platinum bezels to set off the diamond and sapphires. Here are the before and after photos so you can see how it was transformed!


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ties that bind us

The newest addition of our family of jewelry artists is Randi Chervitz from St. Louis. Her collection, entitled "Uncommon Threads" is crocheted from fine silver wire over sterling silver armatures. Her jewelry is an expression of the common threads that tie people together, like the desire to adorn ourselves and to connect with our artistic traditions.

She first picked up her grandmother's crochet hook while studying metal-smithing in college. Her grandmother had taught her to knit as a child and she always loved the individual stitches that make up fabric. Immediately, crocheting silver and gold jewelry became her signature style.
We have a lovely collection of earrings and pendants created by Randi. They make a unique, contemporary statement with sparkle and style. Her forms are elemental and dramatic and yet airy and delicate at the same time.


Monday, October 11, 2010


If you happened to drive by the Forum on Saturday you saw a tent in front of Spectrum. No, the circus wasn't in town, but the same excitement was in the air!

Kristin Gibson, our favorite Carolina Beach artist, was here showing how she hand paints her silk scarves, and helping many participants make their own silk ornaments using a less complex technique. Everyone expressed how much fun they had and how amazed they were at using simple techniques to create some wonderful masterpieces! It didn't matter how old your were (we even had a 3 year old) or how much artistic skill you possess, each piece was fantastic! Thanks to everyone who attended, we collected one hundred and fifty dollars for DREAMS OF WILMINGTON!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

What is in the box?

Star and Nancy found some fabulous treasures on their last buying trip, and the packages are coming in daily! The "dynamic duo" surely know how to shop!

WOVEN GLASS is a new line for us. Located near Saratoga, New York, Terry Weaver left his career as an architect to become a glass artist. Wait until you see his hanging vases!
Because they hang you can see the light coming through the glass, adding even more brilliance to the fantastic colors. They are intended to be used as vases, but are beautiful on their own. Need a gift for some who has everything? This may be just the thing! I'm sure you'll want one for yourself as well! We also have some WOVEN GLASS ring holders. Each one is hand made and for nineteen dollars is a great buy!

Wilmington's own Sarah James recently brought in some of her newest pieces. Still using her hand made glass beads, she has added more hand wrought metal to emphasize a very contemporary look. There are hoop earrings, bangle bracelets, and stunning necklaces.

And still more is coming!

Enjoy these lovely cool and crisp fall days!