Tell us a little about yourself and how you got into metal smithing.
My father was a silversmith as a hobby and had a workshop in the basement. I began experimenting with his tools and supplies as a teenager. I then spent many years exploring other mediums and art techniques, coming back to metalsmithing after inheriting his tools. I have made my living as a jeweler for the last 6 years.
To me jewelry should be a personal representation of oneself vs. a fashion item. How are your interests and personality showcased in your work?
I embrace hand-made, especially when it comes to jewelry. My very favorite designs come about when I try to make what I want to wear -not just make something because I think that it will sell. Many of my designs reflect collections that I have, my most cherished being a wall of heart milagros that I have collected over the years. I want my pieces to feel like they’ve been around for awhile, have soul, or a story to tell.
How does living in New Orleans inspire your work?
New Orleanians have an attachment to their town and all things New Orleans that I don’t think exists in many other places. It is very inspiring. It is a town so steeped in history and ritual that it can be a little intimidating to try to reflect that.
New Orleans is very lucky to have several great art markets. I love our creative and very supportive community. Being a regular vendor at a few of these helps me strive to always improve my creations.
Define southern style.