After her design is complete, Marcia Wright gets to work cutting earthy hues of slate, dark stone and a kaleidoscope of coloured tiles, and begins piecing them together like a jigsaw puzzle.
Depending on her client’s desire, the mosaic artist will be creating a kitchen backsplash with brick-red maple leaves, white sand dollars, turquoise ferns and black sea shells, or she might be telling a story with the stone, setting them in a family’s outdoor timber posts.
Wright has always dabbled in art, she said, but the closest she came to creating a mosaic was some stained glass work.
She said she began playing with stones when working as a construction cleaner, as she’d often bring home discarded slate and tiles from job sites.
After building a cabin at Horne Lake a couple year’s ago she began thinking of ideas for a unique floor entrance to surprise her husband.
“I was standing out on the front deck, it was in the fall, and I looked down at the ground and the maple leaves were laying all over the ground and it looked so beautiful. So I started picking them up and drew them on slate and it just sort of grew from there.”
Wright created a rustic and eye catching mosaic of colourful leaves inlaid with stones and the barrage of compliments from friends began, encouraging her to go into business. So she started up Stone Art & Mosaics and today she does small pieces like hot plates, candle holders and business card holders as well as larger pieces that adorn homes and businesses indoors and out.
Wright gets her inspirations from the outdoors, she said, and often takes pictures of nature and then traces them onto the stone.
She also does etchings on stone and creates artsy wall hangings using wood and wood burning techniques. She said she really enjoys her initial meeting with clients when they discuss what she’ll be creating, and talk shapes, colours and images. And when the piece comes together there’s always that element of surprise.
“It’s fun finding the materials, working with the clients and designing something that awe-inspires them in the end.”
The actual cutting of the materials is very time consuming, and can be challenging as rock isn’t very forgiving, she said.
Her husband is a great help to her, she said, and works with her to make log bases for her table mosaics and regularly assists her in her work.
Find some of Wright’s stand alone pieces at the Salish Sea Market in Bowser and Smithfords in Qualicum Beach.
Check out her website for samples of her work and find more information at www.stoneartandmosaics.com or call 250-954-9295, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.