About Esther Smith
Based in South Cornwall, I take inspiration from my beautiful natural surroundings and the goings on of coast and country. My upbringing on the north coast of Scotland has also had a strong influence on the aesthetic qualities of my work. Whether it's automata, metalwork or jewellery, each piece is unique and tells its own story.
Originally trained as a jeweller, in recent years I have extended my range of skills to include the crafts of small scale sculpture and automata. I love to tell visual stories from the world around me and from tales of long ago. The moving parts in my automata really allow me to bring my pieces to life!
The automata are primarily made in silver, copper and brass. I also use enamel, reclaimed tin and reclaimed or coppiced Cornish wood. I treat the metal with patination and oxidisation techniques to achieve turquoises, rich browns, reds and blacks. I also use leaf metal applications and varnishes to seal and add lustre. Recycled tin and enamel add highlights of bright colour. Each of my pieces is crafted entirely by hand so whilst I can reproduce similar items each piece will be entirely unique.