Twenty years on, Emily starts each day early, with a full immersion in the water, most often at Battery Rocks. The sea is more to me than something I just look at, or am inspired by, Emily assures, I have absolutely integrated myself into it. The cold water, the ragged stones and the barnacles against the smooth rock pools are all a morning ritual for Emily, followed by a coffee to warm up and a rummage in the sands before heading to the studio.
It is these daily rituals that carry and flow through to Emily's current collection. Unmatched gemstones in a rockpool-inspired palette sit within crags of silver and gold; teals, blues and greens are paired with the limes, bright yellows, vermilions and pinks that you sometimes see below the water's surface. And there is a casualness to each piece, with watery sapphires sitting off-kilter, all characterized with a tumbled finish and sculptural asymmetry. Elements from the shoreline integrate seamlessly into Emily's working practice, as she recalls a line from nature writer Roger Deakin. When you enter the water, something like metamorphosis happens, she re-counts. Leaving behind the land, you go through the looking-glass surface and enter a new world.
Words and commissioning by Daisy Gray for TOAST Magazine
Images and film by James Bannister
You can watch a film on the TOAST IGTV Channel that shadows Emily's creative process.