Many modern artists are abandoning the traditional canvas in favor of smaller, surprising things, from tiny paintings on tea bags to little masterpieces on butterfly wings. Mary Kenyon, a California-based craftsman, utilizes genuine seashells to make gorgeous jewelry plates that resemble ancient riches recovered from a sunken shipwreck.
Her father, an accomplished oil painter and leather carver, instilled in her a passion for all things artistic. “He gave me all of his oil paintings, acrylic paints, canvases, leather, and hundreds of leather tools after he went away,” Kenyon adds. “Being surrounded by so much talent and inspiration has lead me down this route in life.”
Decoupaging a picture into the shell’s surface is how Kenyon creates her exquisite vintage-inspired shell art pieces. Kenyon then uses gold gilding paint to hand-paint ornate features and adds three-dimensional ornaments like brass and multicolored Swarovski gems. Each sumptuous item seems like it may have belonged to an aristocratic woman in the early 17th century, from Renaissance-style fairy and mermaid drawings to dragonfly and peacock themes.
Mary Kenyon, a California-based artist, creates elegant jewelry plates out of genuine seashells.
Decoupaging a picture into the shell’s surface creates her gorgeous vintage-inspired shell art works.
Kenyon then adds gold gilding paint and bright Swarovski gems to each design.
Each item has the appearance of old riches discovered on a wrecked shipwreck.