Name: Esmeralda Designs by Christina Bjenning
Website Link: http://esmeraldadesigns.com/index.htm
Where are you located? Sea Cliff, a Victorian artisan-rich village only one square mile big without a single traffic light on the North Shore of Long Island in New York.
Tell us a bit about yourself: “My designs like the diamonds I use are, beautiful, rough, and conflict free. In the spirit of conservation, each piece is created with eco-friendly avant garde methods. The metals are up-cycled. The fine silver recycled from photographic film. The bronze from scrap copper.”
I am a Coffee, Dusty Boot and Music loving Distractable Diminutive Metalsmith and Sculptor living with my family in an artisan village a mere square mile without a single traffic light.
My Soulful, Raw and Ethereal Eco-designs embellish rock musicians, opera singers, Oscar Wilde inspired art historians, alternate life-stylers, cowboys, tom girls, wild moms and other really wild spirits.,I design to music. I design for The Lord.
When did you begin designing jewelry/art? Sculptor and painter sidelined by science for …ack…12 years.. I began my jewelry designs and smithwork five years ago
What made you choose this type of art? Fascination with the beauty of nature and her materials combined with a solid background in sculpture made me fascinated by metalsmith work and gemstones. Strong commitment to conservation and intrigued by new technology.
What do you make? What materials and methods do you use? My designs are made with eco-friendly avant-garde methods and up-cycled metals in order to conserve our beautiful planet. For instance, all my fine silver is recycled from photographic film and the bronze comes mainly from scrap copper.
Needless to say, my rough diamonds are conflict free and I use diamonds mined in four of the 74 countries that signed the Kimberley Process; The Democratic Republic of Congo, India, Canada and Russia. The Kimberley Process and System of Warranties is a UN mandated and monitored system. For more information visit DiamondFacts.org.
Bronze, Bronze Baby! My new line of sculpted bronze pieces, made from BRONZclay™, brand new eco-conscious technology made from recycled copper (bronze is a combination of mostly copper and a little bit of tin) and tin and binder that was shaped and hand-carved and then fired in active carbon, just like out of the ashes in Pompeji. The patina is natural and will reveal shining bronze if you polish it…very cool! My Heart collection features fine silver jewelry that speaks to your heart and my Soul Collection features soulful sculpted bronze pieces. And combinations of silver and Bronze My Spirit collection features one-of a kind high-end spiritual pieces in 14K or 22K gold with exquisite precious stones. Also, here you find my doeskin pieces. Only seven pieces are designed every third year. Previous years collections are sold out, the designs are found in National and International collections of lovely costumers in the US and abroad. Three of the latest designs are still available for purchase.
Where do your design inspirations come from? I design to Music, letting the beauty of Nature inspire me as I live by water and walk through the little streets of our village every day. I design for our Lord and cherish my Family my Friends, my rescued pets and the subtleness of poetry and scents.
What is your best working environment/where is your studio? I live in an old Roebuck-Sears house lovingly restored by its previous owner and we fell in love with the house in particular because of its quirky-ness and the freestanding garage up the hill that we insulated and equipped with workbenches and from its widows I can see the Connecticut Sound on the North Shore of Long Island. I dance and the metals sing in that amazing place:D
Magazine articles or press: Del Mar Times, April 2007
Price range: $35 to $3, 500
Tell us a little about one of your favorite creations: Gaia is one of my favorite creations, she is a Peruvian Opal suspended from a yummy14K tasseled gold chain and her colors are like those of the Caribbean…I envision that one day…somehow I find myself in a teeny Cessna in the Caribbean archipelago and I see a constellation of atolls just like in this stone and I point and say-right there-realizing that this is now where I will spend the winters and the plane lands on one of those Islands-yummy green in the middle of amazing blue.
Anything else you wish to add? Thank you so much for choosing my designs for your interview series, I am delighted and so honored to be featured amongst such talent.