“Violent Serenade”

The violin is an elegant instrument that most have heard at one point or another. I recently had the chance to attend an elementary Christmas performance at a local school. They had a charming string choir that made me smiles as the sometime screeching strings worked their way through “Mary had a Little Lamb” and a couple other simple songs. The parents of these children are to be commended, because practice time at home can’t be all that easy.

“The violin, so deceptively simple, can both portray and inspire every emotion imaginable, imitating the braying of a donkey or delivering a tune of heart-rendering beauty.”
-Toby Faber from “Stradivari’s Genius: Five Violins, One Cello, and Three Centuries of Enduring Perfection.


The piece I bring you today is the creation of Bobby Johnston and is called “Violent Serenade”.  This explosion of art and beauty was Bobby’s vision of that raucous serenade that this violin may have been witness to in it’s past.

from samsung 2017 662

Bobby was always on the lookout for a diamond in the rough. He found this wooden violin case at a flea market he was attending down south. When he first got it, it had the original velvet fabric lining which had to be removed due to it’s condition. The interior of the case, under the velvet had this delicate paper pattern which was preserved and has been sealed to withstand years of display.  Old sheet music was fashioned to fit in the case to accentuate this musical piece.

from samsung 2017 661            from samsung 2017 656

The wooden case now holds an orphan violin found at a later time by Bobby. The condition of the violin was such that he could only re-master it into an art piece, which also includes a necklace with matching earrings that can be used for display or as functional artisan jewelry.

violin necklace

The necklace is made out of the scroll of the violin. Bobby “butterflied” it open and added wire wrapping and matte agate bead accents. The earrings are the tuning pegs from the violin. Another set of tuning pegs can be seen at the top of the violin case, used to add authenticity to the piece.

violin earrings

Seeing this piece in pictures is impressive, but can’t do justice to the actual artwork. It is currently hanging in the studio of Storm Cloud Hills, but I know Bobby would rather see it hanging on someone’s wall. If you know of a violin connoisseur or just someone who loves music and the preservation of the past you might pass this article along to them.


The one of a kind craftsmanship won’t be duplicated and is “trash to treasure” story that deserved to be shared.  If you or someone you know is interested in it please reach out to Robin, at Storm Cloud Hills.

https://squareup.com/store/stormcloudhills/  or at  https://www.etsy.com/shop/StormCloudHills?ref=seller-platform-mcnav

from samsung 2017 658


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