Marine Biologist who reads Vogue!!
Artisan designed jewelry Inspired by everything from ancient relics and futuristic post-apocalyptic worlds to vampires and fairies. I like the unusual and special and try to reflect that in my design and choice of materials.
I am a full time Professor of Marine Biology who found an artisan trapped inside longing to get out. I have always had a secret passion for CLOTHES, SHOES, SPARKLIES! I tried to hide it. I didn't want to be shunned in the logical, tweedy, flat-shoed world of academia! But I could never help myself! I read scientific journal papers followed by fashion magazines. I grew up reading science fiction and Mexican comic books full of ghosts of wronged ladies in colonial dresses, haunting the streets and calling out for their lost love! Did my brain grow tangled and twisted - science, nature, fantasy and myth all smushed together? Probably. Am I a happy weirdo with a perfect right brain, left brain balance as a result? Definitely! Instead of a mess, I like to think I'm a logical designer and a creative scientist! But, I spent most of my life thinking I wasn't artistic. Admittedly, My 2D skills are horrific. I discovered my inner 3D artist many years after I was grown up! Goes to show that life is a mysterious and wonderful adventure with unforeseen and beautiful outcomes when you don't fret about it and just go!
My specialty is Goldsmithing, my style a bit organic but modern, my medium includes gold and blackened silver with surface treatments and unusual stones such as rose-cuts, odd shapes, tourmaline, sapphire and raw, black and champagne diamonds. I am SO in love with the metal, the rocks. Well, I started as a geology major before switching to marine science! I just now have a legitimate reason to collect sparkly rocks.
I produce all of my work myself using techniques such as lost wax casting, and a variety of stone settings. Each piece is created individually and clearly shows the maker's hand. I have been a jeweler for many years and I hold my work to a high standard of quality and workmanship and stamp every piece I produce with my name.
I like to make jewelry that's a little different. My bands are a little wider, my stones are placed just so, I use a lot of texture but nothing is overwrought and my designs are tightly edited until they're just perfect. Streamlined, modern, yet organic. I hope you feel this in my pieces and love the work.
Dr. Monica Lara
Owner, Maker, Designer, Curator
When I was growing up I wanted to be an Astronaut or a Fashion Designer. Kids, right? Well, turns out I became a Marine Biologist and a Jewelry Designer instead. Creativity, logic, left, right. I say it's all because a lopsided brain is a bad thing!