Send a Special Note to Mom and help Monarch Butterflies!

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Mother’s Day is this Sunday; you can send your favorite mom a special note, and NRDC will plant a milkweed plant for each note you send. Milkweed is essential to Monarch butterfly larvae: the larvae eat milkweed, and due to less milkweed available, some populations of monarchs are in decline. This Mother’s Day, NRDC and Monarch Watch are joining forces to plant more milkweed for monarchs. Visit this site, and simply enter the email address of your favorite mom or mother figure and she’ll receive a special email. For each email sent NRDC and Monarch Watch will plant one milkweed plant!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms and caretakers out there. Nothing happens without you!

Jackrabbit Print

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I’ve been painting jewelry for about 3 years, and after a trip this summer to visit relatives who run an apartment gallery, I was inspired to delve back into soft pastels. I studied oil painting and lithography in college, and at the end of my college career started to play with soft pastels and really liked them. They have qualities I love about oil paints: easy to layer color; deep rich hues; easy to work and smear with your hands. They also are easier to store and transport and are less toxic. So I decided to take some of my most popular jewelry designs and create pastels drawings.

The first of the drawings was the Jackrabbit print. You can read more about my inspiration here!

In the next few months, I’ll be introducing some new prints and I’m very exited!

My Jackrabbit print is available from the store here.

American Bison are Awesome

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The American Bison is the iconic image of the American West. Vast herds of 40,000,000 used to roam the plains of America. Bison is a crucial part of the plains ecosystem.

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Bison were almost hunted to extinction as white settlers moved west in the 1800’s. Today most bison are kept on private lands, with a few small herds roaming free. Yellowstone Park is the only place where bison have lived continuously in the wild.

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Fortunately today there are several groups striving to move bison to the prairie and reintroducing bison to tribal lands.

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Read more bison facts here!

Inspiration behind the Rabbit

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I designed the Jackrabbit necklace 2 years ago. The idea was a Predator | Prey series: the prey are very fierce and the predators are kind and gentle. The concept of the series was to challenge our stereotypes of what it means to be the prey (weak, scared, bad) or the predator (powerful, strong, good); the reality in nature is both the predator and prey rely and depend on each other. Neither survives without the other; this is balance in nature.

I had been painting the necklaces for over a year when, in the fall of 2016, I started working on original art based on my most popular jewelry pieces; the first piece was the Jackrabbit.

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The second necklace in the series is the Grey Wolf.

People ask me if I have a rabbit, and the answer is no. However I do have a 24 pound cat that does look like a rabbit.

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The Small Jackrabbit necklace is available in my store. The Jackrabbit pastel drawing is also available as a print.

Rusty Patched Bumble Bee first bee on Endangered Species List

beedrawing20170410_1000_2The Rusty Patched Bumble bee is officially the first bee on the Endangered Species list. This bee, a native of eastern United States and upper Midwest, has been on the decline for a while; it’s imperative we take action to protect the decline of bees, as bees are a keystone species and the environment depends on their actions.

In February there was some doubt the bumblebee would make it on the list, although it has been slated to join in January. NRDC sued the Trump adminstration, who froze the federal protection through an executive order. The adminstration backed down, and allowed the bumblebee to be added to the list of protected animals.

Original NASA Photos for Sale

If you have a few thousand extra Euros, an art gallery is selling vintage NASA photographs. While originally taken as science and research photos, framing these photos and selling them through a gallery casts them in a different light. It’s interesting that these photos have the look of mid-century photographs, because of the technology available at the time, that reminds me of the look people are trying to achieve with Instagram filters. It shows us what we value: that we value photographs of a certain era because they remind of us something, not necessarily that they are, or were ever intended as, art. And by doing so, these photos reframe the conversation of what is art.

One of my favorites is the close-up of Gemini 6 & 7. The focus is on the spacecraft, but what is more important is what is seen out of focus in the background: the Earth and the surrounding darkness of space. These photos invoke a sense of awe, but also loneliness; the things of man, while seeming so significant on Earth, look so small when put against the backdrop of space.

http://www.vintagenasaphotographs.com/