Sundance has a very relaxed energy, kind of a well worn feel to it that helps keep me grounded. I am able to have a great balance of work and play there, in the summer and fall after spending the morning in the studio, I love to trail run up to the waterfall and look out over the valley. In the winter I can go ski for a few hours and show up to teach in my ski pants and my students will have just come off the slopes themselves, then we make jewelry over hot chocolate with rosy grins. I love my life and it helps to keep the creative energy flowing!
You mention that you grew up learning to appreciate beauty...what was your path to silversmithing and jewelry design?
What have you found to be the most challenging part of trying to make a living at jewelry design? Most enjoyable?
At first it was selling things at all because I would get so attached to my pieces! Once I got over that it's been a lot of fun to see people wearing my jewelry. I recently observed someone complimenting someone else on a ring of mine that they were wearing and the person replied that it was their favorite ring, neither of them knew the artist was watching the interaction, those moments are rewarding.
What appeals to you about teaching?
I like seeing the joy people get from having a completed piece that becomes priceless to them because they made it! The moment I see the light bulb go on for someone, when the inspiration kicks in and they get into the flow, I know they are hooked and will be back to see me again! Everyone sees things so differently and having people from all over the world and all walks of life challenges my perceptions of things and inspires me to look at things differently. It makes every class different and I love it!
How has the price of metal and the economy affected what you are doing?
How would you describe your style?
What have you found to be the best way to find clients?
Talking to people, wearing my jewelry and being passionate about what I do. People like sharing their jewelry stories and listening had gotten me some faithful clients. Having a relationship with someone through jewelry is special for me, I think it creates a deeper connection for the me and the wearer.
What advice do you have for fledgling jewelry designers?
It's an old saying but still true, do what you love and the money will follow! Never lose faith, just because things don't happen on your time frame doesn't mean that they will never happen, the universe probably has something better in mind! Before taking my jewelry class I had applied at Sundance (my favorite place to be) to work in the store and didn't get hired! Shortly after that I signed up for a jewelry college course and took it 5 times. Almost 3 years later I was hired as the Resident Silversmith and Instructor, a job I'd much rather be doing but may not have if I had gotten the store job earlier!
More of Brittany's work can be found on her website and at the Sundance Gallery as well as the Thanksgiving Point Art Institute Gallery.