In the fall of 2013, Optimystical Studios brought together 11 amazing female artists from around the globe for an art jewelry project called Heroes & Inspirations. This project, funded through Kickstarter, had the original aim to feature 20 Ladies of Science who because of gender politics we do not learn about to the degree of their male counterparts. As the project was funded, an additional 20 portraits were added, 10 each to the Ladies of Literature and Women of History selections, each choosing women who have shaped the world through their actions and words.
In his introduction to the project company co-owner Adrian Keith wrote:
Growing up all of my heroes and idols were women. I wanted to be like these women, they showed me what I could do. I loved baseball, but I never looked up to baseball players like I looked up to women like Eleanor Roosevelt. When I wanted to be an astronaut, I knew I could, because Sally Ride did it.
As our world has changed, as I’ve grown, one thing has stayed strong for me, the desire to honor the amazing women who have been my core inspiration. This project is our very nerdy way to do that.
You can find our Heroes & Inspirations pieces in our Online Shop by following these links:
The additional jewelry pieces funded through the Kickstarter can be found by following these links:
- Element Science Jewelry
- Noble Gas Crystals
- Chemical Formulas
- History Inspired Crystals
- Literature Inspired Crystals
Below are the portraits that each artist did for this project:
Isabelle Melançon: Science (Marie Curie, Grace Hopper, Ada Lovelace, Emilie du Chatelet) Literature (Mary Shelley, Frances Hodgson Burnett, George Sand)
Diloolie: Science (Hertha Marks Ayrton, Mary Sommerville, Lise Meitner, Dorothy Hodgkin) History (Fatima Al-Fhiri)
Whitney Brown: Science (Myra Adele Logan, Gertrude B. Elion, Irene Joliet-Curie, Rosalind Franklin) Literature (Agatha Christie)
Molly Brewer: Science (Caroline Herschel, Valentina Tereshkova) History (Indira Gandhi, Virginia Hall, Liliʻuokalani)
Kata Kane: History (Eleanor Roosevelt) Literature (Octavia Butler, Zora Neale Hurston)
Summer Suzuki: History (Ida B. Wells) Literature (Madeleine L’Engle, Sappho)
Alison Oxborrow: History (Wilma Mankiller, Lydia Litvyak, Harriet Tubman)
Laura McDonough: History (Joan of Arc) Literature (Murasaki Shikibu, Anne McCaffrey)
Emily Dunham: Science (Chien-Shiung Wu, Hypatia)
Rin Veneris: Science (Barbara McClintock, Mary Anning)
Ciritus: Science (Jocelyn Bell Burnell, Maria Mitchell)