People

Arianna Johnny-Wadsworth

i. I work as a:
Knowledge keeper of Traditional Plant Medicines local to the Coast Salish territory. I am a plant gatherer, apothecary maker, workshop facilitator, and small business owner.

ii. I do this creative work because:
It’s been a part of my culture since time immemorial. I create skincare as a way to share my Cowichan teachings & heritage. It is the simplest way to engage the non native community with the land they currently live on.

iii. Personal qualities that help me in my work are:
My love to make! I am passionate about creating recipes from scratch, designing labels by hand, and presenting my products with displays & signage I built myself.
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iv. The greatest challenges around doing this work are:
Having enough time & energy after paperwork & emails! Balancing the admin work with the fun creative process.

v. Creative childhood hobbies:
My childhood hobbies included learning the Cowichan style of knitwear, weaving cedar bark & wool, picking traditional medicine plants on Vancouver Island, and organizing garage sales with my grandmother.

vi. Other creators who inspire you:
My biggest inspirations are my elders & Native “makers”, including master weaver Chief Janice George, Cease Wyse of Raven & Hummingbird Tea Co, Louie Gong of Eighth Generation, Alano Edzerza of Native American Apparel, and lastly Born In The North.
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vii. Training that has helped me succeed in this career:
The traditional knowledge my grandmother & community raised me with helped me succeed as a small business owner. Traveling along the Pow Wow trail & market circuit also helped me gain important customer service skills.

viii. The biggest myth about this type of work is:
That the medicines are just plants. The herbs & botanicals I work with are sacred & carry strong healing no matter how they’re applied.

ix. Some proud career moments:
When Quw’utsun’ Made started making organic sales online to countries across the world. I’ve shipped Coast Salish plant medicines to New Zealand, Hong Kong, the UK, and more.
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x. If you want to work in my field, I suggest that you:
Learn how to harvest the plant medicines with good intentions & from a local elder.

xi. A professional goal I have for the future:
To collaborate with more makers in apothecary, fashion, jewellery, & more.

xii. If you want to see my work, go to:
Go to quwutsunmade.com to shop my store or see my list of stockists. You can also visit quwutsunmade on Instagram to see my personal story & watch my business grow.
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www.creatorsvancouver.com

Header Photo: Charlene Johnny PYT Photography

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