Autumn on the Lake Ketubah

Posted by on Aug 28, 2016 in Ketubah Art, News, Visual Art | 0 comments

Autumn on the Lake Ketubah

Rarely do I have the opportunity to pull out all stops when it comes to media in two dimensions, but this was one of those times!  The commission came from two people who love the outdoors, and when I saw the photo images of lake scenes in autumn, I started to ponder just how I’d capture the beauty.  Sumi ink and gold leaf for the text – no brainer there!  And the rest of the scene involved pastel chalk, watercolor, acrylic, gouache, and colored pencils, each one helping me build the image from far distant background to the foreground.  Of course, the image on a ketubah is always in service to the text, so I worked to set the roundel of the text within a pictorial frame that draws the eye from the autumn details to the main event in the center. The couple found a text they loved on line, and appropriately asked permission to use that copyrighted text for this one-time use....

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Physician’s Prayer

Posted by on Aug 26, 2016 in Awards, Certificates, and Commissioned Works, News, Visual Art | 0 comments

Physician’s Prayer

A simple treatment of Yehudah HaLevi’s poem is a perfect way to honor a doctor’s commitments and humility.  Written in gouache (an opaque water-based paint) with a gold leaf Caduseus at the bottom, this one-of-a-kind work was designed to fit in either an office or a...

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Jali-influenced Papercut Award

Posted by on Aug 26, 2016 in Awards, Certificates, and Commissioned Works, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Jali-influenced Papercut Award

The delicate art of Jali carvings from India informed the artwork I chose to accompany the text of this award.  The delicate papercutting was done on brown paper and mounted on a sheet of white paper dusted with pale yellow pastel chalk, giving the piece a softly mottled look.  When I create these awards, I request as much information about the recipient as I can get so the piece is a perfect...

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A Ring of Precious Memories Ketubah

Posted by on Aug 26, 2016 in Ketubah Art, News, Visual Art | 0 comments

A Ring of Precious Memories Ketubah

One of the things that makes my worklife joyful is meeting a couple who have a concrete wishlist and the willingness to hand me a shopping bag full of ideas!  As you can see, this ketubah captures such a list, from references to the meaning of family surnames and histories, and from work  life (can you find the Drosophila [fruit-fly!]) to a montage of Jerusalem images and a trip over the George Washington Bridge. All of this is tucked into a unifying ring of specific flowers capturing the predominant colors of blue, green, and purple. A total...

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Frank Lloyd Wright’s Light Screens Ketubah

Posted by on Jul 21, 2016 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Light Screens Ketubah

This piece took a wonderful couple and their artist-of-choice on a fabulous visual journey.  From the very first email contact, when they sent me some inspirations in the form of Mogul Jali funerary architecture – which I had been drawn to that very day when I saw an example while on a trip in the Sinai desert – I knew we were ‘right for each other.’  My sketches, their photos, my library searches, and many more sketches flew around the globe because the last 3 weeks before the piece was due found them working in a tiny Malaysian village where wifi was hit or miss, and where we had to plan for contact while everyone was awake!  Truly an adventure.  I learned so much more than I’d ever known about the craftsmanship of Frank Lloyd Wright as I sought out records of his glass work. I extracted small bits and pieces of a wide array of the master’s designs, and silently requested his forgiveness for messing with his ideas!  Another touch was the inclusion of a repeating design from a window by Eliel Saarinen, chosen specifically by the bride and groom. When it was time to assemble the work, I carefully cut away the areas behind which the brown papercuts would be seated.  This was quite a challenge for the three small designs that break up the sections of text since there had to be enough white paper for glue, but it had to be cut back far enough to be invisible to the observer!  I had a framer mount fine wheat-colored linen on a board and then we mounted the text with papercuts on that to allow the subtle warp and woof of the fabric to echo the horizontals and verticals of the cut paper. The papercutting itself was done freehand with no metal rule. Each time I had to cut a long line, I took a deep breath and let it out s-l-o-w and controlled as I drew the knife through the paper.  X-acto Z blades, a new product – WAY very sharp and strong – are the blades of choice.  I buy them in boxes of 100 and don’t hesitate to swap them out if I feel there’s any loss of...

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Traditional Page of Learning Ketubah

Posted by on Jul 7, 2016 in Ketubah Art, News, Visual Art | 0 comments

Traditional Page of Learning Ketubah

Many couples go beyond the customary wording of a marriage contract to ‘wordsmith’ their own ketubot.  This one features a deeply thought-out process whereby each concept that resonated with the couple as they considered their promises to one another was linked to a potent traditional teaching.  The very layout of the document, with a core statement in the middle and ‘commentaries’ around that, shows an unbreakable link in the chain of Jewish learning and values. Delicate medieval and Persian designs in jewel tone colors with touches of raised gold leaf frame the...

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