"Just as the artifacts of the Aztec, Mayan, Egyptian, and Native American civilizations have given me insight into their respective cultures, through my designs I try always to reflect the cultures to which I am exposed. I often incorporate unusual, natural materials such as meteorite fragments, fossils, and custom carved gemstones into my one-of-a-kind pieces. These materials mirror my fascination with the natural elements of the Earth, and the mystery of the sun and stars." Keith Belles grew up in central Indiana. His family was instrumental in his pursuit of a career in art. At age eleven, his father taught him the craft of cutting and polishing stones, and also exposed him to the arts of woodworking and photography. Later, Keith's sister taught him in high school art class, and encouraged him to pursue art as a career. Heeding her advice, Keith studied ancient art and trained as a sculptor and metalsmith in college, then went on to earn his living from his skill and creativity. A talented, self-taught figurative carver, Keith lays claim to over 30,000 carvings. His low relief carvings are cast (using the lost wax process) into Platinum, sterling silver and 18k gold. Keith received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in Sculpture and Metal-smithing from Indiana State University. He currently works and resides in Pittsburgh, PA. His work includes both private and public commissions and in 1998 he was honored by the Platinum Guild with an International Design Award for his Eclipse Ring design.