My love for art started at a young age and my father, who was an artist himself, encouraged me in every creative area I showed interest in. Always having my hands busy making something, I continuously found myself drawn back into jewelry making.
As a teenager and young adult I Worked at the small gem and bead shop ‘Ikote’ in Hood River. My metalsmith journey began when I met Rory and Cari Streeter, a local couple who have a very successful jewelry business, ‘Jewelry by Cari’. It was Rory who first got me behind a torch and watching that first solder joint flow… was love at first sight! Working for them was an amazing inspiration for me to further my education in jewelry making. I attended the Oregon College of Art and Craft in Portland, OR and majored in jewelry making. I was challenged in so many ways there and my conceptual designs really blossomed. After graduating I moved to Maui with my partner! After we moved here I attended an intensive training at the ‘Revere Academy of Jeweler Arts’ in San Fransisco due to the enormous support from my family, primarily my father and I received my JA Bench Jewelers Certificate and Jewelry Technician Diploma.
When I came home to Maui I was fully charged with ambition, I had a million new skills I was dying to implement and dreams of a successful jewelry business I could almost taste! I was ready to hit the ground running! Then… I found out I was pregnant. Oh my… At first I told myself, “Okay! I can totally do this. I have nine months to get this going!” Then the most interesting phenomenon happened… I had zero desire to make! Creating had always been the biggest part of who I am, and it was the most terrifying feeling to have it vaporize from my being. Instead of panicking (even though there was a bit of that) I decided to melt into my fullest incarnation of momminess and enjoy my new phase of CREATING… this time a baby!
After the birth of our son, Jasiah, I truly realized the vastness in my ability to create and had a whole new respect and awe for life and art and the power of the most unconditional love… motherhood. I slowly started dipping my toe back into the jewelry making waters when my lil’ man was about six months old. Daddy could entertain him upstairs while I worked in my studio downstairs and the mama milk was never far away.
It was only when I became a single mama that I really realized how much of a blessing Jasiah was to my artistic side. I realized how capable and productive and driven I could really be, and also how much time I wasted before having children! The amount of things I can get done in and hour long nap time is more that I would have in days before. It also has given much more meaning to what I create and why. A lot of my Volo Metal pieces now have a hidden side that only the wearer sees and this speaks of the theory that you always need to give yourself more than you give everyone else. Only those who invest time in you, get glimpses of that hidden gem that is your true essence. I feel that motherhood has only focused my desires to become the most successful version of me that I can be and the fear that I was broken forever turned out to be I was changed forever in the best ways possible.
Image Credit: Fenamber Photography