Carolyn Osborne’s Creative Forces, LLC may be a “Limited Liability Corporation,” but her talent is unlimited. She is renowned not only for what she creates in the tangible world of artistry but also for her profound sense of community. Her creative talents encompass a panoply of artistic endeavors that include fused glass, jewelry-making, memorial portrait painting, plus an array of other styles and painting techniques.
Sacred Embers came into existence when Carolyn lost her brother David Osborne to cancer in August of 2008 after an epic eight-year battle with the malignancies and complications that led to his death. “He would probably be here today if he had had a colonoscopy,” she shares. “But, because he was so young, they didn’t. He was 42 when he died.”
Carolyn wanted to honor her sibling in a special way. “Keeping my brother close ‘in living color’ is now helping others to feel the healing and peace made possible from holding and wearing a Sacred Embers object,” she says. “I always take the time to get to know who you have lost, using your loved one’s unique energy to create a pendant or amulet, ring or bracelet, money clip, cuff links or key chain, small art dishes, wall art or window ornaments. Your loss is personal to me.”
“Bereavement Artist” may be an unfamiliar term. Think of it as “Artists and artisans working in all media creating utilitarian and decorative pieces from your loved one’s belongings, photos and cremated remains.” Carolyn is included among that highly specialized group of artists.
Sacred Embers are created by fusing dichroic glass with the ashes or hair of your loved one. Carolyn is a ‘heart connection’ to the unique Sacred Embers fused glass memorial keepsakes. Her motivation is “inspired by your stories of loved ones, whether they are about a cherished family member or a beloved pet.”
As a great listener, Carolyn wants to learn as much as she can about the person or pet that a client requests when she creates a memorial keepsake. All that is required is that she be provided with about half-teaspoon of ashes from your loved one’s cremains.
In cases where there has been a burial rather than a cremation, Carolyn can substitute hair from your pet or other loved one instead of ashes. Hair works equally well.
The fused glass memorial keepsake can be crafted to become a pendant to be worn on a neck chain or added to another necklace. Many beautiful examples are found at Sacred Embers Memorial Jewelry.
Sacred Embers can even be incorporated into fused glass key rings, such as a fused glass memorial keepsake with hair from a beloved double-dapple Dachshund named Schatzie.
Clients are invited to choose when ordering whether they want the ashes to remain visible in the finished piece or, if they prefer, the ashes can be concealed between layers of the fused glass, but in either case, they are subtle.
Memorial Pet Portraits
When a cherished family dog or feline friend, that may be lovingly referred to as one of your “fur babies,” dies, it leaves you with heartache. If the Sacred Embers are not your first choice for a pet memorial, consider meeting with Carolyn to discuss having a custom portrait created. As a gifted artist in a broad spectrum of media, she wants to first learn from you about your loss and some cherished memories of your dog or cat. Then with a favorite photo you provide, she will create a one-of-a-kind likeness on canvas that will have and hold a special place in your home.
Ten years ago, Carolyn launched an all-in venture in a high-profile retail location. She opened Creative Forces Gifts and Sundries, which became both a delightful shop and art gallery, in the lobby of the posh boutique Hotel Murano at 1320 Broadway Plaza in downtown Tacoma. It is just minutes away from museums and galleries that Tacoma is famous for, including the internationally renowned Museum of Glass.
Carolyn built her business selling the full array of her creations, including custom and commissioned pieces for international travelers, tourists, and business people who stayed at the hotel. But it grew into much more than that! It was more than just a venue for displaying and selling her own works of art. She supported what became a consortium of artists from throughout the region. Over the next eight years at Hotel Murano, she welcomed 68 other artists to display and market their works of art within her gallery and shop. She didn’t charge any of the other artists rent, merely retaining a commission from selling their artwork. It was all about the artwork.
As the pandemic was raging, it adversely affected almost every segment of society and business, including travel, hotels and the entire hospitality industry. Even airlines, which contracted rooms for their pilots and flight attendants during layovers between flights, had to cancel their arrangements.
Two years ago, it was with a heavy heart that Carolyn closed the store in the hotel lobby. The shop could no longer stay open with all the changes that had negatively affected her business and the other artists whose creations were displayed and sold from that one-of-a-kind retail shop.
Now, with the easing of restrictions, life and business travel is returning to a more nearly normal routine for airline employees and others. Carolyn had formed business relationships over the course of their repeat stays at the hotel. Each time they were in Tacoma, their companies provided accommodations for them again at the hotel.
Today guests of the Hotel Murano walk up to the front desk attendant and ask, “Where’s Carolyn?!?”
Even though she was recently presented with an opportunity to return and reopen her store and gallery at the hotel, she declined. Carolyn has come to enjoy the fullness and freedom of her life today, where she can focus on creating Sacred Embers and her other artistic endeavors without the day-to-day demands on her energy of operating a full-time retail store.
Carolyn’s energy seems limitless, though, as she also works alongside Kris Vermeer, a teaching artist and artist-in-residence with Tacoma Public Schools, teaching 2-D and 3-D art using recycled materials for children in grades K-5. Additionally, Kris is widely recognized for her 38 years as a self-employed artist in metalworking and fabrication, custom design, glass fusing, and painting.
History and Progression of Carolyn’s Creative Forces
Carolyn was a longtime resident and homeowner in Fircrest. However, she decided to sell her house and move to a waterfront home with unmatched spectacular scenery and sunset views, creating the enticing serenity of life near the water. Every wall in her home exudes her creative touch in gallery-like displays of both her personal artistic creations and others she has collected. It is exquisite!
Passionate about art since she was in elementary school, it wasn’t until Carolyn had held a career for many years as a corrections officer that she allowed herself to move forward and morph into the owner/operator of a sign-making company.
As a single mother, she devoted herself to raising her precious daughter Anjelica. Now Anjelica is happily married and a mother, too. Carolyn delights in spending time with her precious two-year-old grandson now.
To schedule an appointment to meet with Carolyn Osborne and discuss fused glass keepsake(s) of your loved ones or portraiture, call her at 253.227.8871. She is also available via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Look for Carolyn’s gallery on Fine Art America to order prints of paintings that include everything from angels to nudes.
Carolyn’s greatest passion today is creating fused glass memorial keepsakes, and she also creates functional memorial objects as yet another way to memorialize your loved one who has gone on.