Justin Bortz: Capturing Expressions of Love and Light Within Handcrafted Jewelry
May 31, 2016 10:41PM
● By Gisele Rinaldi Siebold
The swan is a symbol of elegance and beauty, and the black swan is rare, powerful and ancient. The swan’s body touches the Earth while the head stretches upward, symbolically creating a bridge to the heavens. Justin Bortz, owner of Justin Bortz New World Jeweler, chose as his symbol the Midnight Swan because it is an animal totem representative of many aspects of his life’s journey.
A gemologist and designer, Bortz is grounded and spiritual, much like the black swan. He is on a quest to connect people with the power of their own creativity; in essence, like the swan, he is a bridge of intentional inspiration. His artistic philosophy is evidenced by the love he expresses for the art form by sharing his own gift of creative intuition to imagine, and then bring to fruition, jewelry that is both meaningful and beautiful. Marrying simple design with classical detail, each piece evolves from thought to drawing to wearable work of art.
Bortz’s unique design approach begins with a simple attraction to a gem, which he uses to inspire design drawings that will eventually become three-dimensional pieces of jewelry. “In designing a piece for stock, I am first attracted to the gemstone, then I simply allow the design to come forth while being attracted to the gem,” shares Bortz. “In most cases, my best designs come easy, and I don’t even know where the idea came from.”
Personalized design consultations provide opportunities for interested clients to choose from an array of unmounted gemstones, and commission one-of-a-kind pieces designed and made especially for them. With a strong foundation in gemology and goldsmithing, Bortz carries inspiration through to the completion of a piece. He enjoys the creative process, applying delicate, contemporary, sacred and geometric designs that capture personal feelings and emotions, each piece unique in its own right.
Bortz creates a welcome environment where individuals are comfortable sharing their design ideas. A true artisan, he listens carefully and works diligently to intuitively interpret what the wearer desires. “When I’m working with a client, I am reading all the subtleties of their style, shape and color,” explains Bortz. “Then I simply ‘get out of the way’ and let the design come forward. I enjoy this process most of all.”
A unique element that can be added to a design session is a reading with aura reader, Brandi Jones. An individual’s aura––a field of energy or light surrounding a physical body that communicates emotional, mental, physical and spiritual expression––consists of chakras or energy centers. The energy frequency emitted by gemstones affects individual chakras, which Jones describes as colors and patterns with various intensities.
The best alignment of gemstones to the chakras can give a rise to feelings of happiness, good health and enhanced mental clarity. The right grouping of gems for an individual can create a powerful effect on that individual.
This distinctive series of steps provides the opportunity to connect more deeply with oneself and with stones and gems, and to participate in a creative process potentially resulting in a piece of jewelry that is both beautiful and empowering to the wearer. Custom pieces can take various forms, from brooches and necklaces, to rings, bracelets and earrings.
Aura-inspired design parties, held either at Justin Bortz New World Jeweler or a client’s private home, offer expert design consultations for a host and guests. The host receives special incentives, and leaves the event with an original sketch done by Bortz, which can be created at any point in the future.
A craftsman from a young age, Bortz welcomes the opportunity to artistically capture an inspirational symbol for a client. Being present, mindfully listening and assisting with the unveiling of inspired ideas are the gifts that Bortz delightfully shares. His abounding love for the joy that comes when a wearer discovers the extraordinary essence of self sets him apart as a genuine artisan, spiritually in tune with his craft.
Gisele Rinaldi Siebold is a contributing writer to Natural Awakenings, Lancaster-Berks edition. Connect with her at [email protected].