i. I work as a jewellery designer and maker.
ii. I do this creative work because…
I love to create original jewellery inspired by nature that can act as life markers for the people who collect and wear it.
While doing this work requires a lot of other business skills, my favourite thing – after all these years – is still making each piece I sell.
It seems hard to believe now, but I started my work career in business – researching and testing products for a wide variety of businesses. While what I do now is totally different, I think that early work helped me understand that if you make something that you totally love and it is true to what you believe, there will be others out there who think that too.
iii. Personal qualities that help me in my work are…
A passion for the tiny details of shape, form and figuring out how things fit together, move and work with the body. I love getting lost in design work and then looking back at a finished piece in wonder of how it all came together.
iv. The greatest challenges around doing this work are…
There always seems to be more to do when you have your own business. I have to be careful to make time for travel and family and friends and personal time, especially being on my bike because that is when inspiration and ideas come to me best.
v. Creative childhood hobbies:
I’ve always loved to make original things – anything three dimensional, out of clay, wire or paper. I remember one time tossing the clothes out of my drawers and making the inside of each drawer into a private little world.
vi. Other creators who inspire you:
I admire many of the impressionists – Serrat, for example, the way he created amazingly large works using tiny little dots of colour. I’m also inspired by the Italian masters, such as Caravaggio and Bernini who created incredible realism in their work, which is one of the reasons I love to travel to Italy. I’m also so inspired by the creative people at the shows I am part of, being surrounded in our home with their work and wearing hand made things makes everyday moments inspiring.
vii. Training that has helped me succeed in this career …
During high school I worked in a handmade jewellery retail store that lead to me being mentored by a skilled European jeweller who taught me silversmithing and lapidary repair. I followed that up with formal jewellery training at the Vancouver school of jewellery art and design, then launched my first line in 2000 and have been working at it ever since.
viii. The biggest myth about this type of work is…
That you can’t make a living at it. If you are diligent, believe in what you are doing, and recognize your strong and weak points and get help when you need it, you can make it work.
ix. If you want to work in my field, I suggest that you…
Love working with people – the people who wear, buy and live with what you make. It is very important to be a good listener and observer, so you can make the best possible pieces for them keeping to your original true designs. Always remember that if a customer wants you to make something that is not true to your design principles, direct them to another jeweller. We all have our unique strengths.
x. A professional goal I have for the future …
One dream is to make my Lockets more accessible to people throughout the world. Whether this means more far reaching shows outside of Canada – time will tell, not a rush at this moment, my hands are very happily busy.
xi. If you want to visit and see my work, go to…
SHINY FUZZY MUDDY!
After that, locally – you can find a my work at the Vancouver Art Gallery gift shop, Just Jewellery on Main Street and South Surrey, Hazel Jools on Main Street and the Craft house on Granville Island.
For other locations throughout Canada and the Pacific Northwest USA find a list on my website: Joanna Lovett Website