Hold On Loosely
Posted on April 03 2018
I LOVE this ring! There are so many reasons why. First, it’s well-made and I know it will stand up under the daily wear and tear of a ring that you never take off. But beyond that, there are some deeper qualities that I want to talk about.
Whenever I make a piece of jewelry, there is a certain amount of seeing the end from the beginning which directs me in creating the piece. Typically the last thing you do before you set the stone(s) is apply a finish to the metal. On this ring, the silver is finished with a liver of sulfur patina that gives it a ‘used’ look. Even though it is precious metal, it displays the rich patina that only life can give it. As I think about that, I think of people I know that although life has “patina’d” them, they have a richness and depth that you only acquire through living life. Those are the kind of people I want to surround myself with. But it doesn’t end there.
The gold straps on this ring represent so many things to me. First, the precious stone is captured, or surrounded by the gold. The dearest part of the ring, the turquoise, is protected. And don’t we all try to protect what is precious to us? That can come out in a good way or bad, depending on how you choose to protect it. I choose to use precious things to protect precious things; in other words, even in seeking safety, we need to still have a little vulnerability. And those gold straps still have to be formed and forged, shaped to fit and finally installed with fire to secure them in place. The precious things in our lives are worth the effort. But the stone isn’t completely covered. Its beauty still shows through. It’s kind of like the old 38 Special song, ‘Hold on Loosely’. You can’t completely protect anything and if you try, you smother it and it will lose its essence.
I also like the finish on the gold straps. While the silver is dulled, the gold has a nice sheen to it. Even though it’s gone through the same things as the silver, it still retains its shine. We all need to remember to retain our shine, no matter what life throws at us. It is those experiences that can either make us bitter, or better. Choose better. Your life will be richer for it and you will enrich those around you with your shine.
Artist Jeff Fulkerson