Grief CareWhen I founded The Midnight Orange, I never imagined myself working in grief care. Once I started sculpting families, a client asked me to make an inclusive sculpture showing her entire family portrait including her young daughter that couldn't be earthside with them. With extreme reverence I took on the custom project, and once their sculpture was received it was shared with other bereft families and online communities.My inbox became a treasure chest unpryable to the faint of heart. The messages I received were heavier than gold, private as pearls. What families shared with me about their loved and little ones who touched the stars too soon could have easily intimidated me or been a responsibility I was not mentally or emotionally prepared for, were it not for Christopher. Christopher. His name is still the "golden bell hung in my heart". On the first day of summer in 1990, the world suddenly lost a very cherished eight year old and I lost my bursting childhood friend. As a child I did not know how to process this loss and for years I just carried him with me. Every milestone I had I wished for him. In college I became desperate, not for closure but closeness to him and I wrote a letter to his family about 10 years after his passing. My message was strong and clear. I missed Christopher, I loved him still, and I REMEMBERED. Always I remembered him.The letter I received back I held with trembling hands. His mother wrote that my letter was a true miracle and went on to explain that after his passing, his loss was so painful that he became rarely spoken of outside of family. I felt such newfound sorrow when I read that. In retrospect I now am keenly aware of (and hope to help break) the deep taboo that has surrounded child loss and I understand how easily a well-intending heart can be lost for words when confronted with the unthinkable. At the time that I read it, however, it became a new burden on my heart and this unknowingly bookmarked what would later become my life calling. One of the things that stood out profoundly to me was need. The need for loved ones to be acknowledged, celebrated, spoken about. The need to know others remember. The need for a LEGACY. Years later when my artistry unexpectedly intertwined paths with grieving families, I knew such deep love for them and that I was tasked with the tremendous privilege and responsibility to help others nurture these love legacies. Sculpting these tender memorials isn't something I ever set out to do. The shift in my artistic responsibility came to me first in whispered urgency and then in amplified echos. Family after family came to me, entrusting their hearts to the interpretation of my hands. Friends of grieving families came to me, seeking a way to express comfort while sensitively nurturing grief in the absence of knowing what to say. I continue to be so deeply honored, so indelibly touched with every sculpture I make. Sculpting on your behalf isn't my job, it's my life calling. Watching a family's love and unity form in my hands is unforgettably personal and the highest honor my artistry could ever be called to do.My work isn't about loss. It's about life and love and loss co-exists among both. You'll find in my available collections and past work that I sculpt for all of life's occasions. Through clay I aim to capture the spectrum of human emotion, from very bright to very raw. I choose to create with bravery and want my work to serve as a story telling outlet that marks personal milestones among the human experience. I am very humbled to share that my sculptures are used worldwide by therapists who most often incorporate them into sand tray therapy to aid in the path of healing.I live in the United States and my business is fully run right out of my home studio in a quiet little town in New York, right between Niagara Falls and Buffalo. We are an "art family" and fully immersed in creativity here. This is a lot about me and there's irony in that. My bespoke handmade sculptures are about you and your experiences. To learn more about the process and how to start or grow a collection of sculptures from The Midnight Orange, I warmly invite you into my shop.
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