Inside the Artists Mind – LISA BLACK

Lisa Black has always been drawn to creating. “In one form or another… working with small gems, stones and natural elements was a natural segue from landscape architecture - which I still do and is similar in the placement of texture, colour, patterns and shapes however on a much larger scale.” Undoubtably. Moved by her natural surroundings, Black’s bespoke fine jewellery often incorporates ancient and tribal elements in its design. Although 2020’s curve ball has put a few things on hold for Black – and the rest of the world – she’s a determined creator: “I found these delightful fancy diamonds in a smoky colour that are just so beautiful. I have been thinking about what to do with them for some time now. It’s time to get back to proverbial drawing board. All this time spent thinking and planning are now ripe for actualising.” Let’s go.

When did you first meet Mr Minty? 
“I first met Mr Minty when I stopped into the shop after an event at the Architectural Association across the street. I found the energy in the shop instantly compatible… It’s always a good sign for working together with others when your first impression is positive and the personalities affable and engaging.”
Where do you work from?  
“I have a charming studio in the middle of my garden. It is a magic place. Its impact is felt the moment one enters.”

Where does your process begin?
“I sketch, however often my mind starts working when I see an object and playing with stones or things physically can also really inspire me.”

What else motivates you to create? 
“I really need only see some fabulous object, stone or element to inspire me and ignite my creative spirit. Or a walk in the garden, the forest or a seaside stroll will inevitably provide a myriad of creative urges.”

Biggest obstacle you face?
“Maintaining my creativity while keeping my expectations
(of myself and my creations) realistic.”

What do you listen to while you work? 
“Podcasts on all things political, opinions as well as stories, like the This American Life podcast.” 

Favourite tool to work with? 
“Sharpie pen, a Rotring pencil when drawing and fine stainless tweezers arranging stones.”
What was the first thing you ever created?  
“My first, serious, item created was a pair of earrings, where I used two Papua New Giunea shell money items. I found these star like shell pieces at a Sydney auction and instantly felt they would be fantastic as earrings. The shell was old and carved by coastal Papua New Guineans likely some 100 or more years ago. I paired them with some fine deep red coral and the end result was magic. 
Although that said, when I was about 18 I used to collect old beads. I found with a friend these fantastic jet beads which I re-strung and we would share wearing them. I think she still has this strand.”

What colour makes your heart sing? 
“Cornflower blue.”

Most loved scent? 
“Osmanthus as it wafts on the breeze.”
What are three things you do to stay sane?  
“Forest / bush walking, regular ocean swims, garden time and cooking.”

What are you excited about right now? 
“I realise the world is at a critical point however at times I feel like this is the dawning of a new era. I am excited at the prospect that our world may be cleaner. We will need to develop energy efficient modes of everything we once took for granted. This may be slow in coming but somehow I am excited that the tides are turning on all the negative aspects of society… wishful thinking maybe but one never knows…”

So, what would you like to see or hear more of in the world? 
“I would love to see more equality, compassion and fairness for women, black and indigenous people and those disadvantaged. All discrimination reckoned with… those that are responsible held accountable.”

Best advice you’ve been given?
“To maintain ones integrity in whatever it is you put your hand to… to believe in yourself.”

Finally, please share what you are currently: 
WATCHING: Mrs America
READING: Phosphorescence by Julia Baird
LISTENING: A lot of American soul and black music inspired by the BLM movement. 
DOING: Tending to my veggie garden and orchids… today anyway.

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