Pammy holds a goose egg that she has smoothed to a silken finish and with a gem marker inscribes a complex trellis such as faberge himself might work. The diamond edged drill then cuts through the shell, carving it out to leave a delicate lattice, writes Carolle Doyle.
This is the world of egg crafting and one that has enthralled Pammy for the past 15 years. In glass cabinets around the walls of the one time chapel that is now her home, studio and classroom. Ostrich and emu eggs sit upon intricate stands whilst goose eggs dangle on chains from brass spirals.
Some are carved and some open with tiny brass hinges to reveal a swan or a baby, in one egg that has been turned into a teapot, a Chinaman. Many more are beautifully painted, many with birds that look out from the eggs with jewel bright eyes.
Pamela, points out that an ostrich egg is painted to depict the ascension of Christ. On the reverse a stairway shimmers with angels descending through the thin, eggshell blue ether.
I look from the egg to the chapel wall in front of me for it bears the same scene. When she came here 9 years ago Pam wanted to paint something in sympathy with the building and so, Taking her theme from the egg, she painted a great mural across the entire wall.
Christ lingers in Gethsemane and the angels, those small angels that decorate the egg, are descending to meet him. “You see, he was going home was’nt he? she says.
Pamela feels that she too has come home here to this chapel a mile or so from the black and white village of Berriew that lies between Welshpool and Newtown. Cosy cottage rooms open on to what was once the chapel itself with its high windows through which the light streams. Light that makes this vast space an ideal artist’s studio.
One wall is devoted to Pamela’s paintings and her latest work, ‘Macaw’s feathers,’ is still on the easel. The body of the room is taken up with a long table upon which, easels and water pots are set awaiting the students who fill the chapel house in spring and autumn.
Her eggs are brought by collectors worldwide but secretly, she grieves for those she has sold for each one has taken many hours of work. Pam has decided to hold an egg-crafting workshop in the summer so she can share this absorbing pass-time with others.
All sorts of people find their way here, she says. It may be quiet and away from the bustle of every day life, for that is what attracts not only Pamela, but visitors who come to admire the chapel house and her amazing artwork, from April’s 2007 edition of North, Mid Wales & Borders Living.
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