The Artist

I paint portraits of diamonds.

- Angie Crabtree

EDUCATION

ART STUDIES IN SAN FRANCISCO, CHICAGO AND AMSTERDAM
Angie Crabtree, known as The Diamond Painter™, is widely regarded as the first and only professional diamond painter. Using oil paint, she creates magnified portraits of real diamonds. Her most well-known commissions include the 14.93-carat Pink Promise diamond and Chopard’s 342-carat Queen of Kalahari diamond. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Art in Painting from the San Francisco Art Institute.

Angie painted her first diamond — at 5 feet tall — in 2012 for an art exhibition about materialism & luxury. Inspired by their abstract patterns, she began collecting images of diamonds and speaking with gem cutters. Without any prior knowledge of gemology, Angie fell in love with their symmetrical patterns and began painting every shape, one by one.

FROM TEACHING TO PAINTING

THE LOVE OF PAINTING IS STRONG
Originally a high school art teacher for 7 years, Angie quit her position in 2015 to pursue an art career. Her work was quickly discovered by the jewelry industry via Instagram, and she was invited to paint at a gem show in 2016. She now spends every day doing what she loves.

Angie works with private clients and corporate companies worldwide who share a mutual appreciation for beautiful gems.

Engagement ring stones, patented cuts, and auction diamonds are my muses.

- Angie Crabtree

Each painting is comprised of several thin layers of color, and takes 3-6 months to complete.

- Angie Crabtree

A LENGTHY PROCESS

IT TAKES THOUSANDS OFHOURS
Each layer takes 1-2 weeks to dry, so Angie rotates between 10-15 pieces at a time. Painted in oil on canvas, Angie uses a classical glazing technique to create a stained-glass effect, reminiscent of 17th century royalty portraiture. The result is a photo-realistically painted diamond enlarged 1000+ times. Their large scale allows viewers to experience the small, beautiful gems in an up-close and personal way.

Frequently asked questions

How did angie crabtree get inspired to paint diamonds?

Angie fell in love with diamonds after painting her first, at 60 inches tall, for an exhibition about “Luxury” in San Francisco in 2013. She fell in love with gems and their geometric patterns, and quit her job as a high school art teacher in 2015 to paint diamond portraits full-time.

is angie crabtree a self-taught diamond painter artist?

Angie Crabtree is a classically trained fine artist, and a self-taught diamond painter. She has a Bachelor’s in Fine Art from the San Francisco Art Institute, and studied at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

What does angie call her style of painting?

Angie considers her work portraiture — gem portraiture — which falls somewhere between realistic and abstract.

What artists have influenced angie crabtree’s style?

Angie considers her work portraiture — gem portraiture — which falls somewhere between realistic and abstract.

What are the most important projects angie has worked on?

In 2017, Angie completed a commissioned oil painting of the Pink Promise by its previous owner Stephen Silver, before it hitting the block at Christie’s Hong Kong. The incredibly rare 14.93-carat Fancy Vivid VVS1 pink diamond, described by Christie’s as the “Picasso of the Pink Diamond world,” sold for an incredible $31,861,000. She created four painted portraits of the Pink Promise: one at 64 inches tall, and three at 24 inches tall. She was honored to have been able to wear the ring on and study it from life before starting her painting. In 2016 Angie completed a commissioned series of oil paintings for Chopard of the 5 biggest gems cut from the Queen of Kalahari diamond, an exceptional 342-carat stone of perfect color and absolute purity. Chopard and Angie’s ongoing collaboration has included portraits of unique watches, and eventually high jewelry pieces.

What type of paint does Angie use?

Angie uses only the highest quality materials, including handmade oil colors, known for their quality and extensive palette including genuine Italian Earth Colors.

What is the most challenging part of the painting process?

Patience. Angie’s paintings take between 3 to 6 months to complete, or approximately 70 hours to 300+ hours. She is constantly rotating between 5 – 10 paintings at once to allow each layer to dry and cure properly (about 1-2 weeks).

Does Angie only paint diamonds?

No. Angie Crabtree can paint any type of gem, faceted or rough. She also paints watches and high jewelry portraits.

Dream of Diamonds

See the rainbow in everything.