Sunday, July 13, 2014

Lover's Eye Jewelry

This is a short-lived trend from the Georgian era (it lasted from 1790 through 1820 approximately) that I hadn't even heard of until a friend of mine, attending a Jane Austen Festival this weekend, asked me if I would draw a "Lover's Eye" of her husband to wear at the event.

I did some looking into the idea, and I thought it was quite fascinating.  The Lover's Eye was commissioned by a lover to be a secret homage to his or her beloved, supposedly anonymous since it can be difficult to identify a person just with an image of his or her eyes.  And yet a person's iris is about as entirely unique as his or her fingerprint, so the image is incredibly intimate as well.

So today I sat down with a picture of her husband, zoomed in super close to see the details of his eye, paper, and my trusty Prismacolor pencils.

It was exceedingly fun to try to capture as many of the unique characteristics of HIS eye, as opposed to just a generic eye, as I could. 

I photoshopped the drawing into the picture she sent me of the setting it will be put into.  So this should be how it ends up looking:

(the bottom of the ruler shows centimeters)

I showed a friend who is interested in Regency history this link, (also the source of the images above of historic pieces) which explains excellently the concept of the Lover's Eye jewelry, and she said the resulting pieces seemed a bit disturbing and bizarre to her.  Personally I find them charming and whimsical, and just a little bit magic. What do you think?  Perhaps it's a bit of all of the above.