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Monday, July 25, 2011

I Love These Fossilized Shells!

Ammonite shells visit to the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History has inspired  me to paint these gorgeous shells.  Not only are they incredibly beautiful, they also resonate with me on a more meaningful level.  

These ancient shells are call ammonites.  They look very much like shelled nautiloids but are actually more closely related to octopus, squid and cuttlefish.   Very similar to a nautilus, however, they grow and move into a larger chamber which has grown ahead of it.  It adds newer and larger chambers to the open end of the coil and grows like this until it has reached maturity. 

Isn't that just like life?  We are constantly building and growing on what we have already know based on what we have learned and what we have experienced.  Sometimes it might take a couple of tries to get it right, and there may be a few bumps along the way, but eventually we do learn and grow :-)

And here is my latest painting.   It is a mixed media and incorporates collage.  Let me know what you think.  I hope you love it.  

8 x 8  x 1.5 inches


  1. I absolutely love both of your mixed media Ammonite paintings! They are gorgeous!!! And thank you for sharing a bit of info about them...very interesting and I like how you relate it to life.


  2. Hi Jo-Ann,

    I always love to hear the story behind a piece of artwork. Did you already think of a name for your latest painting? Maybe something like "Outgrown"?

    Thanks for sharing your story and a little bit of ancient history,

    Franziska San Pedro
    The Abstract Impressionist Artress

  3. Thanks so much, Esther and Franziska! Glad you like the paintings and their story :-)

    I have to admit, Franziska...I am a bit lazy, I think, when it comes to naming paintings lol! I am terrible for naming it the obvious... Ammonite #2, or whatever. I like your suggestion of the title "Outgrown", rings well with the ancient fossils. Or maybe "Cycle of Life"?

  4. Sounds good, I like "Cycle of Life"!
    Sometimes, I ask my friends on facebook, twitter or g+ for suggestions -I even started a contest on my blog ones and the response was overwhelmingly great. After we collected names, I closed it and then they all had to vote :-)

  5. you have a beautiful blog....Thank you for stopping by mine...xo

  6. Great suggestion, Franziska...I have actually thought about doing that myself, glad to hear you got such a great response!


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