Thursday, February 26, 2009

Eye of the Beholder...

While running an errand, I stopped at a crosswalk to wait for the light to turn.  I was minding my own business and not really thinking of anything but the task at hand.  That's when I got a prickly feeling on the back of my neck, that feeling that someone is watching you.  My head whipped around and I locked eyes with a pair peeking through the blinds in an apartment building's window.  For a moment, we stared at one another.  It was such a strange and intense feeling.

One of the first rules you learn as a City Dweller is never to look anyone in the eyes.  It's a personal and intimate gesture that can either provoke or entice.  So, it was definitely an unusual experience that got me thinking about eyes.

Below are some of the eye inspired beads, pendants, and finished jewelry.  

(Please note that not all of the artisan made goods are sold individually as components, but as completed finished jewelry pieces.)

A) Rub-resistant silver-tone eye charm from SteelLace.  B)  Black and white eye photo charm from  C)  Fine pewter heart's eye bead with the word, "Protect" on the back from Green Girl Studios.  D)  The Eye of the World lampwork glass bead by Tera Belinsky-Yoder, (Etsy Seller, beadygirlbeads).


Lorelei Eurto said...

Cool post Andrew!
Welcome back by the way! I missed you while you were gone!

I'll let everyone know you said Hello, when I get on the cruise.

Warm sun and umbrella drinks, HERE I COME!

Marcia DeCoster said...

Impressive, that took some doing, collecting and documenting each of these intriquing pieces.

Fancy meeting Lorelei here, we're about to embark on the same cruise!

Smitten kitten makes me giggle out loud

RupaB said...

What a coincidencem, I was just working on a mixed media piece that has several sets of eyes.....

Unknown said...

I bought a really nice glass eye pendant from Lukin at the Best Bead Show in Tucson. It is still sitting on my beading table with all of my other beads that I haven't had time to use. Someday! The nice thing about beads is that they don't go bad and they usually get more interesting with age.

I have such a hard time with that "no eye contact" rule. I grew up in Montana - everyone looks you in the eye.


Melissa J. Lee said...

Hi Andrew,

I love eye beads, especially the classic blue ones intended to ward off the evil eye. Thanks for including my dragon eye bead in your great collection!

(Of course, they always remind me of The Lord of the Rings, too, but that's a different issue...)


Margot Potter said...

I made a recrafted paper collage necklace for the Green display at CHA that featured eyes cut out from fashion magazines. I find them so compelling.

Lovely compilation of fascinating items.

Thank you for sharing these!


Ruth Trowbridge said...

Hello, i am a farm woman - please tell me more about this eye contact thing as i try to engage in eye contact - what's up - please tell me i am serious here - peace

Andrew Thornton said...

Hey Marcia and Lorelei! If I wasn't going to Hawaii in a couple of days, I'd so begrudge you all! A cruise just for beading sounds wonderful and like a really awesome time!

Andrew Thornton said...

Hey Rupa! Make sure to post it when you're done. I'd love to check it out. I was doing a piece with eyes as well and I am just struck with how i-conic (hee hee) and profound the symbol is!

Andrew Thornton said...

Hey Ask Sara! I know what you mean. I've got a lot of goodies sitting on my tables and on various surfaces around the house just waiting to be picked up and used.

And it's hard to adjust to it when you're not used to avoiding eye contact. Though I learned the lesson QUICK AS A WHIP the first time someone was straight up and said, "Want to go home with me?" I was shocked and horrified that anyone could ask such a question without me even saying a word.

Andrew Thornton said...

Hey Melissa!

Some of my favorite eye beads are the old African ones. They're really powerful. At least they seem that way to me.

If you walk around certain parts of Brooklyn, you see the eye everywhere. That famed iconic blue eye that stares out at you... greets fortune and wards evil away.

Andrew Thornton said...

Hey RuralRose,

It made me miss small towns something fierce when I read your comment. Part of me likes the idea of knowing all your neighbors and being there for one another and have everyone wave and be friendly. The other part of me likes Big Cities where you can sort of sink in and be forgotten and observe and not necessarily have to be involved.

Eye contact is such a strange thing here in the City. If you look at someone in the face and in their eyes, you can either invite danger or... uhmmm... make new friendly friends.

My dad came to visit once and he's originally from the Ozarks and even though he lives in Orlando, is still very friendly with the neighbors. He would start smiling and waving at people on the street and in the store and people were horrified. Like we went to get stuff for dinner and he started to try to talk to this woman about apples and how he found some great apples in a town called Eddysville and she was like, "I'm not interested." It was really strange to see her personal bubble kind of burst and then see her sort of scramble to rebuild it.

Nowadays on the train, I have to be careful since I've been away so long. I tend to look at people and kind of examine them and their features and movements and I have to remember that people are very shielded here. So, I resort to wearing my iPod and reading a book and trying to look busy. Every now and then, I'll take the smallest of looks to see who's around me.