The first thing I ever enameled. When Zingaro, my mentor, asked, "what do you want to make?"
My first instince was that of a snarky, arogant & ambitous student. I shot back, "You fancy yourself on the creative level with the all-time greats, I'm just going to steal y'alls tricks. How about you show me how to capture the emotion of DaVinci's Mona Lisa?" And he gleefully accepted. Later that night, defeated & exhausted we summized that for years DaVinci left the piece unfinished out of frustration. I took our progress and showed my mother... who took out a sharpie, scribbled on the fired enamel metal... and captured it perfectly. This is actually her rendition of that smile, which was much easier to recreate once she showed me the way & explained why it was so impactful.
This piece holds a special place in my heart, the first sketch to defeat what Hemingway once coined, "The White Bull." And it took a team effort. Every Spiritile that came after would be new and different, but this remains "The Muse." I am still attempting to capture her today. And each time I do, I get a glimpse of a different smiling emotion from a different inspriting source.