Negev Ketubah

Posted by on Sep 26, 2021 in Ketubah Art, News, Visual Art | 0 comments

Negev Ketubah

In the midst of pandemic restrictions, I’ve been given a magical travel opportunity!  The chance to create a ketubah for a wedding of two Be’er Sheva residents has allowed me to spend about 70 hours diving into the geologic wonderland of the area around Makhtesh Ramon, deep in the Negev.  Don’t ever imagine that deserts are colorless!  The mountains, rocks, and sand in this part of Israel are a paintbox of dreams.  And into this stunning setting, the couple requested that I ‘plant’ a jacaranda tree in full purple bloom.  There’s nothing more to say.  I’ve loved every stroke of the paintbrush, line of colored pencil, and blush of pastel chalk in building up an imagined environment for that tree.  I hope it feels right at...

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Anchorage to Philadelphia

Posted by on Sep 2, 2021 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Anchorage to Philadelphia

What’s the wish list?  I never know, as I meet a couple (these days always on Zoom…), what their requests will be in terms of design.  For this one, the specs were few and varied, and as always, my job was to make it an aesthetic whole.  THAT’S where the fun begins! Two trees, a koa and an olive, interlocking roots that form the mountain range above Anchorage, the Philadelphia skyline – with William Penn restored to his monumental glory, and a color palette limited to yellow, orange, and royal blue.  The solution was to hold the design together as a papercut and slip the color behind using pastel chalk sifted through a small sieve and then...

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Klimt-Inspired Ketubah

Posted by on Aug 16, 2021 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Klimt-Inspired Ketubah

Another gift of a deep dive into a vision only glimpsed before:  the gilded and textured treasures of Gustav Klimt, translated into a cosmic ketubah, and grounded, like the vision on the horizon line of a planetarium as the light begins to change, with a clump of trees.  Crafting the art for this piece involved multiple layers of watercolor wash to give the heavens depth, and then a deliberate exercise in various metallic paints and metal leaf to design the swooshes that embrace the text and cut through the skies! Parts of the illumination are textured and raised, catching light and sparkling in copper, bronze, silver, and...

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Interlocking Shapes Ketubah

Posted by on Jul 18, 2021 in Ketubah Art, News, Visual Art | 0 comments

Interlocking Shapes Ketubah

Each ketubah I craft comes with its own story, which makes my work a living, growing experience all the time.  This ketubah was a true collaboration with three artistic minds at work!  Not only the beautiful text, composed by the couple and translated into modern Hebrew by the renowned Israeli poet Nitsa Kann, but the design and color choices all came to me from the grooms.  A sketch on grid paper and an envelope full of paint chips was all I needed to be off and running.  At times this felt to be an Art Deco exploration, at times a dive into an early 20th Century Industrial Art style, and at times, the color palette offered me a visit to the American Southwest and its turquoise-heavy Navajo/Diné arts. Here’s a look at the process of mixing paints to match paint chips provided by clients.  Scientific?  Mmmm… It’s like cooking without heavy reliance on a recipe.  A little more of this and a little less of that. And VERY careful notes about the building of each color. It always seems like magic, and sometimes even like...

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Trilingual Garden Ketubah

Posted by on Jun 28, 2021 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Trilingual Garden Ketubah

Often, after hours of talking with a couple, I receive a surprising ‘wish list’ of what to finesse into a lovely document.  And this is a delightful example of that process.  It happens that I’ve had a long relationship with the bride’s family, so it was a particular joy to dive in.  Family traditions from both the bride’s and groom’s side brought us to an English garden, a text in Bulgarian, and Oscar, the precious elder cat tucked among the pothos leaves! In developing the design, I worked with the couple’s dozens of colors of paint chips to line up the wildflowers that might be found in a garden.  The papercut design was entirely hand-cut, planned meticulously to dance with the text and painted flora, and then backed with an ombré watercolor wash to enhance, rather than box in the rest of the...

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Infinity of Love Ketubah

Posted by on Jun 23, 2021 in Ketubah Art, News, Visual Art | 0 comments

Infinity of Love Ketubah

This couple approached me with very clear ideas – A balance of rainbow colors incorporating the symbol of infinity.  Oh, and a short list of about 12 different images looking for a home on the design!  Where to start?  Parsing the text so it could be logically divided into two. Working with the exterior wording so the reader doesn’t have to do a headstand to read it! Choosing colors line by line, and fitting the tiny designs into some order between words!  Easy! The outer band of words so complements the image of the infinity symbol that it suggested exactly how the words should be laid out.  And then the rest fell into...

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