The Art of Darkness

Pretty Prisms

May 3rd, 2010 by Cobwebs

PrismHere’s a neat display idea: A bit of the outdoors under glass. These are sometimes sold pre-made as “beach boxes,” containing beach sand, shells, bits of driftwood, and other small natural objects (the pictured example is a “Great Lakes prism” by The Wild Unknown). I really like the Zen-like arrangement of the items.

Obviously, making your own box from articles you’ve collected would be more meaningful, and it certainly doesn’t have to be beach-themed. Beveled-glass pyramid boxes are available in some craft stores (although, weirdly, I couldn’t locate an inexpensive source online), but you can also choose any other small glass display that suits you.

For contents, you can collect small items from a favorite vacation spot* or–my favorite–visit an old cemetery and look for interesting objects. A bit of graveyard dirt (dry it in the oven if you’re going to put it in a sealed container, lest residual moisture fog up the glass), a crow’s feather, and other doom-laden detritus would make a gloomily lovely display.

One of my prized possessions is an antique key that I found in an old graveyard in England. I usually wear it on a necklace, but I’m thinking about making it the centerpiece of a desktop display like this one.

*Please make sure that there are no restrictions on collecting before you take anything. Many national parks and similar sites have strict regulations about that sort of thing to protect fragile ecosystems.

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