Today we talk about nature as a source of inspiration.
For millennia, people not only feared the fury of nature but were awed by it, too. Nature provided and inspired, challenged and tried – and our ancestors responded with due humility and admiration. Nature was deeply intertwined with their daily lives, their work and crafts. One type of object that humans have been creating since the dawn of days, thousands of years B.C., is jewelry. They made pieces that were functional (for example, pins and brooches’ original purpose was to hold folds of clothes together; rings carried seals, etc.) but also beautiful and remarkable. Jewelry was made from what nature had to offer: bones, feathers, pebbles, seashells, leather, and other natural materials.
In art museums all over the world, there will always be a display on old jewelry. In New York, for example, the MET has a fantastic collection of ancient Egyptian jewelry. There are many turquoise blue beads, which resemble the Nile, and gold, invoking images of the sun. The Byzantine jewelry collection at the British Museum sweeps you off your feet with its splendid grandeur of gold and gems, merged for centuries in flower shapes and decorated with natural ornaments. Old and new, pieces draw from nature and mimic it. And this inspiration spreads far beyond jewelry to art in general. Walking through the halls of any museum, how many paintings, statues, installations, or decorative elements recreate natural motives? Most of them, don’t they?
Image source: metmuseum.org
Image source: britishmuseum.org
Of many inspiring natural wonders around the world, the islands of the Philippines take their rightful place among the world’s most fascinating natural landscapes. El NIdo in Palawan is ranked among the world’s most beautiful beaches in the world because of its extraordinary natural splendor and ecosystem. Likewise, Palawan bagged the #1 spot for the best island in the world according to travel magazine, Travel + Leisure. Another island to be proud of is Boracay in Aklan, known for its pristine waters and powdery white sand. It is ranked as one of the best beaches in the world as well. Recently, a major rehabilitation was done on the island to preserve it.
Image source: trevellers.com
Image source: travelandleisure.com
These white pristine beaches with turquoise blue water inspired a number of pieces from Rich Earth Jewelry's collection. Inspired by the earth and the sea, the KAIA Collection centers around colorful gemstones formed within the earth’s crust, and faceted gemstones enhanced to add dimension to its natural beauty. The color of these stones mimic the vibrant color of the deep blue seas or the magical views of sunsets in the Philippines.
Nature as a source of creative inspiration must be protected. Rich Earth Jewelry has a strong ethical commitment to sustainability. In particular, we support the efforts of several Filipino non-profit organizations that work on preserving habitat and biodiversity in various parts of the Philippines. Proceeds from one of our REJx collaborative collections benefit the Save Philippine Seas movement. The movement was founded at 2011 by a group of individuals concerned with a report uncovering the evidence of illegal extraction and export of endangered marine wildlife from Indo-Pacific countries. Filipino seas are the most wonderful source of inspiration but our marine and coastal resources are threatened. Save Philippine Seas aims to protect these rich resources through information, education, and communication activities and community-based projects.
REJ x Save Philippine Seas Multi-wear Necklace
REJ x Save Philippine Seas Bracelet
Humans have come a long way from fearing the unexplainable forces of nature to taming it and making nature vulnerable to the human activities. If Gaia, the Greek goddess of Earth, was real, she would have been terrified by how people are altering, damaging, and otherwise threatening their environment. As artists, who seek inspiration from nature, we cannot turn a blind eye to the process of environmental degradation. We believe that every little action helps. It is not about gain, it is about virtue. A good person would help her sick mother, for example – why not nature, which nurtured humanity? Why not, if we can? Thinking of these issues matters and talking about them helps spread the word of concern. Let’s all do our part!