Happy July and welcome back to Full Circle Fridays! Now that the Vegas madness has come to an end, we’re back and ready to kick off the Full Circle series again, th
is month — jewelry influencers you’ll see at LUXURY Privé. The line-up we have is quite impressive so get ready to be inspired, enlightened, and empowered by the bright minds in our community. By now, it’s safe to assume you know Angie Crabtree. If not, you’re in for a treat. Angie is an artist whose series conveys realistically painted diamond facets enlarged 1,000+ times. Ranging from 24 to 64 inches tall, their large scale allows viewers to experience the small, beautiful gems in an up-close and personal way. Angie will be painting diamonds live, all three days of LUXURY Privé (July 24-26, 2016) in the legendary Waldorf Astoria on New York’s Park Avenue. In the meantime, get to know her story and how her journey has gotten her here. Wishing all a happy and safe holiday weekend.
Describe your workday in 3 numbers
250 brush strokes
3 doggie breaks
1 Instagram post
What is the last item you splurged on?
A rose-cut pear shaped diamond ring by my good friend Tura Sugden.
What do you love most about the jewelry industry? What do you find the most challenging?
That people in the jewelry industry understand and appreciate my work. Most challenging? Having to select only a handful of gems to paint.
What’s something you can’t live without?
Insulin….literally! I’ve been a type 1 diabetic since childhood.
How did you get started and what’s been the biggest surprise on your journey thus far?
I’ve been painting consistently since I was 4 years old, attended an arts high school, and graduated from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2009. I painted my first diamond in 2013 for a Luxury-themed art show, and finally in June 2015 I left my job (I’m a former high school art teacher) to become a full-time artist.
First word that comes to mind when you think of JCK
Describe your jewelry and/or personal style in five words or less
All black, glasses, sneakers, diamonds.
TV show you are binge watching or last book you read
I’m more of a music lover. This month, a lot of Schoolboy Q’s Blank Face.
Best advice you’ve ever received?
“The only things that happen in life are what you make happen” – my dad. He’s told me this since I was a kid, so every day I pave my own pathway.
What would people be surprised to learn about you?
Three years ago, I didn’t even know that diamonds came in different cuts.
When I’m not painting, I am ________.
Shopping for art supplies with my french bulldog Hubert
What drew you to narrow in your focus on diamond painting?
After painting my first diamond (which was 5 feet tall), I became mesmerized with their facets. Even though I’m a realistic painter, they made me feel like an abstract painter. I’ve always been attracted to both styles of art, so I found that diamonds were my perfect match. I love that they can be interpreted in many ways. People in the gem industry immediately know they’re diamonds, but others don’t. They’re often interpreted as mandalas, fractals, and… my personal favorite… kaleidoscopes. I love it.
What does the future hold for you? Can you see yourself expanding into other gemstones, etc.?
My next trip is to NYC to do live painting at Luxury Privé, and then more gem and jewelry shows. I’m most excited to paint at Carat+ in Antwerp, Belgium in February 2017. Aside from travel, I’m working on collaborative projects with some great designers. Spencer Fine Jewelry has placed my paintings inside gemstones for a new line launching at JA this month, and fashion designer Paige Gamble is getting ready to launch a line of luxury leather purses and clutches with my diamonds printed on them.
As for painting, I plan to start fancy colored diamonds this Fall, and other colored gems next year. Then everything else. I will never run out of gems to paint!
What are the items always in your purse
My phone, glucose tablets in case I get low blood sugar, aquaphor, wallet, keys, and loose diamonds… ok, maybe not the last one ;)
Favorite jewelry designer, or favorite artist?
My favorite artist is Kehinde Wiley, a contemporary oil painter who creates large scale portraits of present-day figures in a traditional, Old Masters style of royalty portraiture.