60a) A Diamond in the Rough-Linda Bushnell

Patron: WRK Family Foundation
This piece celebrates the richness of Nebraska’s natural resources.  Even though they aren’t diamonds, they’re just as precious.  I appreciate the fact that this project benefits resources in the state that reach out to those who are in need such as the Boys Hope and Girls Hope organization and The Sadie Dog Fund.  I hope this project benefits these two in many ways.  When art transcends the beauty of a piece to benefit the greater good of the community, it’s a win-win for everyone!
     I’ve come to believe that what a person sees depends on what they’re looking for.  Nebraska often gets a bad rap as being a boring state with “nothing to do.”  Ask any teenager who has grown up here and many will echo that sentiment.  At least I know I used to think that way, having grown up here; but I’ve come to see the richness and beauty of resources in this state.
     When I started thinking about this project and the idea that it is celebrating Nebraska’s statehood, I found myself repeatedly returning to this idea of the state often being underappreciated.  It seemed to me the state is like a diamond in the rough.  The state has grown and progressed in so many ways in 150 years of statehood; and yet there is still more untapped potential.  Part of that potential depends on how we take care of the natural resources we have.
Materials or Construction
     One side of this heart represents a diamond.  The other is symbolic of more “rough” natural beauty.  I chose an agate because of the beauty and color variations that can be found in one.  A serendipitous discovery was that the state mineral is the Chalcedony stone, also known as Blue agate.  That became the inspiration for the gem stone side of this piece.
     Using acrylic paints, I plan to emulate the sketch as faithfully as possible.  It will be more graphic and bold than the soft colored pencil rendition in my sketch.  I’m planning on having the stone come around a bit to blend into the diamond.  For the base, I am going to use a metallic gold, the type of pediment of which a stone of rare and precious beauty might be placed.
     Nebraska, you rock!