Evolution of the Seahorse Texture by Elise Thompson
"Hello, my name is Elise Thompson and I’m the designer and maker behind Mejia Jewelry. Mejia is a Greek word meaning “wear it in good health”. I chose this word to represent my work because it encompasses the exact sentiment, I want my jewelry to receive it’s wearer. Wear this jewelry in good health and happiness and I hope it brings you joy.
Now that you know a little but about my brand, I would love to talk about my new favorite texture that I’ve been using in my latest work. It’s called the Seahorse Texture, and the reason for that is because it is inspired by a seahorse’s bony armor. I’ve always been enamored by seahorses since I was little and saw them at the aquarium, but it wasn’t until 10 years ago that I discovered they actually live in the waters off the shores of NY. They are found in shallow water and swim vertically and have long tails that wrap around grasses. The most fascinating thing about seahorses is that the during their courtship, the females pass eggs into the males’ pouch where they keep them for 3 weeks and give birth to hundreds of baby seahorses.
I grew up on the south shore of Long Island, only 23 miles from here and I spent my summers beachcombing along the shores of Atlantic Beach and Long Beach. Over the years, I’ve collected a massive amount of shells, bit of creatures, sea glass, rocks, you name it. But about 10 years ago, I was walking up from the beach to the boardwalk in Long Beach, and I discovered a completely preserved dried up little seahorse. This is the specimen in front of you. Every part of its little body is intact. I was astonished that these creatures lived so close to us and decided to make a mold of it, not knowing exactly what I would end up using it for, but I knew I wanted to use it in jewelry somehow. Normally, during the molding process, the item you are molding will burn out, especially if it is organic matter. But luckily, my seahorse survived. Once I made a mold, I inject ed wax and manipulated the wax into other shapes.
The first piece I made was a direct interpretation of the seahorse, as a pendant. But then I wanted to get a little more creative with its shape and created this double finger ring, that’s quite massive and solid silver, but it speaks volumes and brings joy to those who wear it. The rings under the seahorse, moved me to create my own texture inspired by its bony segmented armor. I experimented with different sizes and landed on two versions of a stacking ring. From there I’ve used this texture in a frame surrounding roman coins and as the texture of a crescent moon. It’s given me great joy to use this creature in my designs that I’ve admired my entire life.
In many cultures Seahorses are seen as symbols of magic and enchantment. They embody the essence of power, authority, and strength. It’s no wonder I’ve been enchanted by them since I was a little girl, walking on the beach with my bucket collecting treasures."