Canadian jewelry artist Dawn Teasdale presents her collection and inspiration.
ABI: What was the catalyst that encouraged you to become a full-time artist?
DT: I spent many years making jewelry purely as a hobby, practicing and learning hand fabrication techniques in my spare time, while I worked a full-time day job. Over that time, I had acquired most of the tools I needed to build up a nice little home studio.
In late 2012, I started to think seriously about taking some leave from my job, to take a jewelry course in San Francisco. To my surprise, in early 2013, my employer notified me that I was going to be laid off because of cutbacks. After the shock of that wore off, I realized it was a perfect opportunity to take the plunge and go full-time. I went ahead, and took the course, and haven’t looked back. It was really the best thing that could have happened.
ABI: What are the biggest sources of inspiration for your jewelry designs?
DT: I love to travel and enjoy trying to get a feel for what a place is like, its culture and history. Part of that is absorbing the atmosphere, visiting museums and galleries, looking at historical objects and artifacts – making connections to the history of a place – I find it truly inspiring. I also find time spent in nature is one of the best sources of inspiration.
One series of work I’ve developed came out of a trip to Hawaii, where I visited Volcanoes National Park – it had a tremendous impact on me. And of course I always travel with a camera, so I can capture reference shots for a texture, a shape or a mood that inspires me. A walk in the woods, down a beach, or even a city street can be the inspiration for a whole new series of work.
ABI: How do you see your business evolving in the future?
DT: I live in a smaller city, so I always knew that the market for my work would have to be developed outside of my community. Currently, I‘ve been doing a lot of shows. I enjoy the travel, being able to meet people, and talk and get feedback about my work but, for the future, I would like to cut back on the number of shows I do and turn my focus to wholesale.
I think it would allow me to get my work in front of more people than I can reach on my own, and give me more time in the studio developing new work – I’ve got more ideas than time these days! I understand that if I want to grow my business, wholesale is the best route to go, and I’m excited about the idea of working with retailers.