“A gemstone is an emotional symbol of love, self, and success. Because it represents matters of the heart, it should speak to the heart. A gemstone should be crafted to the highest standards to radiate its own unique beauty and personality from within.”
Richard is a singularly focused artist and one of the rare individuals who has chosen every career path to prepare himself as an artist, inventor, and craftsman to elicit the very best in each gemstone he cuts. A hobbyist since childhood, Richard started his professional career in 1974 cutting gems to pay his way through college and earning a degree in Geology from Kent State University in 1977. After earning his Graduate Gemologist Diploma in Residence from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) in 1979, Richard continued his career in the retail, wholesale, appraisal, and manufacturing arenas garnering a wealth of experiences and expertise. In 1984, he accepted a teaching position at GIA in both the Resident Colored Stones Program and the Jewelry Manufacturing Arts department.
All of Richard’s experiences and qualifications have influenced his unique approach to gem cutting and his ongoing quest to create gem designs that speak to the soul. “A man of few words, prize-winning cutter Richard Homer lets his gemstones speak for themselves. Optimizing color and light return is every gem cutter’s primary objective because that’s what consumers notice when they hold a stone in their hands. So when cutter Richard Homer proved he could ratchet up a gem’s brilliance by an average 100% in any standard shape through new techniques in cutting, the international gem world took notice. The foundations of faceting were shaken to the core. Lapidarists and other gem experts wondered just how he did it”, reports Robert Weldon of Professional Jeweler Magazine.
A member and officer of Gem Artists of North America, (GANA), Richard is recognized as a pioneer of the concave-cutting technique. As an award-winning gem artist, Richard Homer of Kent, Ohio, radically curves and cups facets along the pavilion, girdle, and table of traditionally shaped gemstones to make them explode with light and color.Concave facets work so well because they become convex on the inside of the gem, returning light along the whole surface of the curved facet, instead of in one direction as with flat facets. His style is geometric and crisp, although he has evolved into more free-flowing girdle outlines such as his trademarked paisley pear, concave arch, and concave arabesque cuts. Nonetheless, the hallmark of his work is remarkable brilliance.
Richard considers his most noteworthy skill his creativity in new design, which often requires new cutting techniques and procedures that in turn require specialized tools that he creates to suit his needs. In fact, Richard specifically allocates eight hours a week to engage his mind in creative tooling and its applications to new gem designs, allowing him to stay on the cutting edge of lapidary art.He enjoys working with a range of gems from Amblygonite to Zoisite, each one of which he knows inside and out, allowing him to recognize a good piece of rough and how to get the best out of it. “He can make average material beautiful and rare or wonderful material downright stunning”, asserts David Zoltan of David Zoltan Designs in Austin, Texas. A belief validated by Richard’s having won 15 American Gem Trade Association Cutting Edge Awards. He has also set records cutting one of the world’s largest gemstones; the 20,769ct Adiël Topaz and some of the rarest, including Tashmarine, Kyanite, and Paraiba Tourmaline.