Tag Archives: rocks

When I don’t know what to do first…

…I start with drilling rocks. After a good two weeks away from my studio, there are so many things I want to do, I am paralyzed by indecision. The best thing I can do is drill holes in rocks. I can never have too many to choose from, and it calms my mind to make slow but steady progress on something. There is not much creativity in pressing the lever of a drill press, peck after peck after peck, to work my way through a beach rock. But with each and every pebble I think about how I will use it, or what colors I have to combine with it, or how happy I’ll be to have so many drilled and waxed rocks to choose from when I am sitting down to make new necklaces. By doing something uncreative, I am opening my mind to ideas.


Sometimes there is even a reward to just leaving drilled rocks hanging around on the counter overnight.



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Rocks, rocks, and more rocks

I never get tired of them. I can’t walk on the beach without looking down. I just don’t want to miss the next special rock. I’ve been spending a lot of time this week drilling beach rocks for necklaces. It sounds monotonous but it’s really not, for me. I finished one book and started another today (on CD), all while drilling rocks.

I have containers and boxes and bowls of little rocks all over the house. Next to our front steps, outside, there are rocks. Many of them ended up there when they were replaced, inside, by other special rocks. I would be shocked to think there is anyone who has visited our island who has not taken home a small rock or two. They don’t call it “the rocky coast of Maine” for nothing! Tonight, when I went to take a shower, a few more rocks fell out of my pockets.

Rocks from today, drilled 3/4 through, waiting to be marked to drill from the other side.

Rocks drilled all the way through, waiting to be waxed.

Wax off, wax on.

Sea glass does not benefit from waxing. It would lose some of its weathered frostiness.

This morning I got up early, again, and left the house for a quick walk to the station and back. I did not take the beach for the first part of the walk, but did walk on the sand on the way back. I didn’t plan to even look for rocks, but I managed to find a few more to bring home. I mixed up some dough for sourdough bread, and patted myself on the back as it started to rain, then thunder, then hail within 20 minutes of getting back from my walk!

Man can not live by rocks alone.


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Gilley Beach

Today, the weather here was just gorgeous. I didn’t even realize it until later this afternoon. I spent a good part of the day drilling rocks for necklaces. It’s a job that takes time and sounds tedious, but I like it and I seem to go into a “zone” when I do it. I listened to a book on CD, and thought about how I would use the rocks and which ones I wanted to drill next. I lost track of time. When I came up for air, the wind had died down, the sun was out and the temperature was above 60º for the first time since last November. Bruce came in from lobstering and we took a walk. Once again Bruce took the road home and I went home via the beach. Just before we split up, we saw our first Great Blue Heron of the season. We watched it land in the top of a tree. (So funny to see such a large leggy bird in a spruce tree.)

I walked home slowly, taking time to look for more little rocks to drill, hoping to find some sea glass or something else really unusual. I picked up a few things, but mostly just enjoyed being in the warm air and listening to the sound of the waves sucking at the rocks as they went out, then crashing gently as they came in.

A bit of a swell had come up yesterday with the wind,  stirring up kelp from under the water and tossing it up on the beach. Decomposing kelp can get kind of smelly, but with the wind direction, the warm air, and fresh kelp on the beach, the whole place smelled like an oyster tastes. Really fresh.

Along with the little rocks, I picked up some pieces of driftwood to use for photo props. I got home around 5:30, happy to have made spaghetti sauce and to have washed lettuce for a salad before I went out. It was one of the better walks I’ve taken, and they’re all pretty darn good.


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Special order

I’m finally getting around to finishing some work I promised a while ago. I love making beads with different designs on each side. They give me a chance to put together a necklace that can be worn two different ways. I textured the beads using silicone molds made from local objects. (On Islesford it doesn’t get much more local than rocks and cedar.)



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