My wife accompanied me on our last trip to Thailand. During the trip we stopped in LA for the day to meet up with some people and do a little business. Up front I will tell you that December is the best time to travel to Thailand. The weather is temperate and comfortable with very little precipitation. But I digress. In LA we met up with some of my contacts and sold a few stones. Despite being around the business the ins and outs of the wholesale deals are a little Greek to my wife. Upon selling some diamonds and buying her trip necessities with the cash she commented how fun it was. In Thailand we did more of the same selling a little parcel of emeralds in Bangkok for some Bhat. The seed had been set, I needed to see if I could make it all the way around the world just selling gems for my sustenance and travel. Couple that seed with a mild mid life crisis and you get a gemologist setting up the rules of the game for himself. In one week I start the game, or the journey for you reality TV show nuts. No reservations. No money. Just a pocket full of gems and I sell my way around the world. One way tickets west or basically west. Follow along on this blog and Instagram @winwardgg. I will have a couple of Indie film makers along for the ride from JL Studios here in Ogden. Look out for the 2017 Pocket full of gems world tour. #apocketfullofgems
Gems move me. The mesmerizing dazzle of their brilliance captures my attention. In my opinion a vivid colored stone in whatever hue is the epitome of that color, but a vivid color natural gem is a difficult thing to find. This rarity often breeds misunderstanding. It also breeds desire. Once you find one you are moved to find another. Pigeon Blood Red, Canary Yellow, Royal Blue, these descriptive terms represent a connection to the color, the connection that moves the miners, cutters, dealers, retailers, customers along the process of gathering rarity out of the earth.
I received a poster about 10 yrs ago with a Salvador Dali quote, “The difference between false memories and true ones is the same as for jewels: it is always the false ones that look the most real, the most brilliant.” In true surrealist Salvador fashion he found contradiction between dreams and reality. Yet I have had, on a very real occasion, my dreams become a reality upon finding a beautiful stone. The palette of Salvador Dali was full of vibrant colors that his surrealist mind was able to morph into great paintings. For my discerning eye I prefer the stark reality of the beauty and rarity in natural gems.
My desire to capture greatness was probably cemented in junior high. The strength of your cement probably determines how great you will be. Van Gogh wanted “A new way of seeing” The musically duo 21 Pilots “Wish (They) found some cords in an order that was new” I am in constant need for the next great gem that I get to hold for a period. It is rather dichotomous of me when it is time to sell……it is only a little torturous. When the person comes along that sees the same beauty and rarity I do; it confirms to me that surely I am not chasing baubles or trinkets. When this process comes full circle it suppresses the cynic and lets the romantic visionary inside me blossom.
There is a great amount of depth to the gem and diamond business. There is so much depth that even some jewelry professionals do not understand it. In the following Blog posts I hope to share some of the technical challenges that gem dealers and buyers face, while also to shed light on some of the common misconceptions and their dangers.