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2011 April 18
by elizabeth_admin

I am so touched by the great response to my mosaics.  Thank you!  *blushing*

A few of you had questions about creating mosaics.  Erin asked if it was a craft you could learn through the Internet or through books rather than an in-person class.  I’m going to answer yes and no.  YES: There are some great books out there that go in depth about the materials and tools needed to make mosaics as well as the process and the “rules”.  The one book that comes straight to mind is Sonia King’s Mosaic Techniques & Traditions: Projects & Designs from Around the World“.  This book is chock full of information and sources.  It’s written well and clearly.  Sonia is an amazing mosaic artist and one of the most well known in the world.  Her style is mostly modern and abstract. 

NO: My only caveat though is, if you are a visual learner like me and learn by doing, a class would be a much better medium for you than a book for exploring the world of mosaics.  When I took classes with Valerie Carmet, I had a lot of one on one attention with her, was able to ask billions of questions, get her advice and help with design decisions (very important considering my lack of visual arts background).   It was fun to make mosaics with other people and see what they were working on.  It was very inspiring.  I loved it.  I guess I keep picking artforms/crafts that are usually solitary and I am a very gregarious person, so classes fulfill both needs.  😉  

About 5 years ago when I was still making mosaics, there weren’t many blogs around by mosaic artists.  However, I just did a cursory search using the tag word, mosaics, on and found a lot!  So apparently there is a larger interest in them now or the artists themselves are starting to write about it more. 

Karen sent me an email earlier today noting that mosaics seemed very similar in process to quilting with the “piecing” aspect.  So funny!  I had just been thinking about that too.  She asked me if I would ever make quilts.  And my answer is I don’t think so.  While I love the process for mosaics, I don’t think I would enjoy it for quilting.  For me making mosaics is very much like making your own jigsaw puzzle.  You create the pieces and shapes.  I think I have the patience for that when it creates a piece of art to hang on your wall, but not so, for a piece that lays on your bed.  Also, sewing for me, is all about the garment and getting to wear it once it’s done. 

Here are a few of the mosaic pieces from around the world that keep inspiring me (attributions under each photo).

Sonia King's "Spinoff"


Brett Campbell's Starry Night


Kate Kerrigan's "Rainy Day, Central Park


Thank you again for the wonderful response to my own mosaic projects!  It was fun to share them with you.

2 Responses leave one →
  1. April 18, 2011

    Your mosaics are FUN!!

    I took a mosaic class a few years back while I was unemployed, and just loved it. Everybody else did one piece, I got all over-achievery and did four. LOL (too much time on my unemployed hands, I think.)

    I bought a coffee table with an inlay area that would have been perfect for “Starry Night” but when I thought of how HEAVY the darn thing was going to be once the tiles were on, it stopped me in my tracks.

    Thanks for showing your other creative endeavors!

  2. April 18, 2011

    Wow- three great posts in a row. Your mosaics made me have two amazing realizations-

    1. When I was a kid I really wanted to make mosaics, and I used to save broken bits of colored glass, etc, with this idea in mind, but I just didnt have the combination of money and persuasion (to make my parents get me supplies) to pull it off. Instead I dealt with this fascination by making models (out of cardboard) of architectural masterpeices like the Hagia Sophia in Istambul, writing a high school paper on Byzantine art, and a short story about the inlay marble in the Taj Mahal.

    I later dismissed the whole notion as a silly crafty idea that just exists to make money for companies like Michaels….and then I saw your amazing peices, which makes me remembered my own ideas…

    So cool.

    2. I can see, when you describe how much it costs you in time to make these things, my own questioning of my creative projects in terms of cost compared to value. (80$ for a windmill that just spins around to look pretty? 30 to make a meal I could have bought at a restaurant for 35$? countless weekends spent gardening, to find that slugs ate my lettuce, and I could have bought it instead? and lets not even talk about sewing…

    but seeing these mosaics of yours. makes me realize that the joy is in the process, not in the possession or consumption of the final result.

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