The owls from my Japan beach have been evolving for over a year now. It all
started when Sachiko
picked up a jasper rock from our beach and remarked that it had a shape like one of our owls.
(We collect owls from our travels, etc., and have well over 150 by now.) I picked up a black felt
pen and a pen of white out and proceeded to draw in eyes, a beak, wings, and feet. We enjoyed the
result and several more rocks were drawn in similar fashion.
I started making trips to the beach to mainly pick up rocks that I could see as owls. Dozens, then
hundreds were drawn - mostly in the evenings as I would be watching TV. I began giving them to
classes of students I taught, friends, as well as accompanying batches of beach rocks across the
I started picking rocks with depressions where I could glue groups or nests of owls and collected
pieces of driftwood which could have holes drilled to glue on perching owls.
Then the owls evolved smaller and smaller, as I found smaller point sizes of the
pens I was using.
I went through an amber phase where I only did translucent chalcedony/amber pieces.
Last winter I happened to notice a green glass shard on the beach which was the
same shape as rocks I used for owls. The prevailing winds bring in a lot of glass floats - most
break up at the shore and the pieces get tumbled and pitted from the action in the sand. I brought
back a batch of glass pieces to draw, some were bigger sized and not owl shapes. I could picture
drawing regular mountain scenes on the glass incorporating owls. The sand pitting makes a perfect
surface to take the color from colored pencils. Thus the individual owls evolved into scenes
The circular area of the glass ball that develops around the tube used for
blowing up the glass ball is thicker than the rest of the ball, so as the balls break up, the
thicker round pieces are tumbled into fairly even circles. The point of contact where the tube is
inserted often leaves a small glass bubble in the center. These small bubbles turn out to be unique
shapes to draw owls.
I found a craft shop that has small metal clasps. These are glued on the back
of owls with a glass glue to evolve into broaches. Some of the owls have gained bell cap tops and
evolved into necklaces.
The process of owl evolution continues........