Welcome Karyn, our newest member

Hello Jewel Envy family,

I am here to introduce myself, Karyn Houston, as the newest member of the studio.

That’s me, at my bench at home, where I’ve been working on designs for my jewellery line sticks vs stone, since 2016.

How did you find your way into Goldsmithing?

It all begins in a land far, far away, a long, long time ago….

But, not at all. I initially enrolled at Fanshawe College in London to study Audio Engineering, but after the first week it all felt very wrong, so I switched programs, and snuck in to the delinquent’s corner, aka the Art program, where I soon felt right at home.

I spent much of my self-directed final year working with paint.

Upon graduating, I followed my beloved Sculpture professor, Thierry Delva, back to his stomping grounding in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and attended NSCAD University to get my BFA. My major was sculpture, but I soon enrolled in classes in the Jewellery Design and Metalsmithing program in order to access their centrifugal casting set up, which would enable me to cast small objects in much higher detail than I was capable of achieving with the casting methods we used in the Sculpture program.

One day, as I was working on a piece, I had a vertiginous moment in which all the architectural and jewellery designing I had done on graph paper in my grandparents’ house as a child was suddenly and viscerally connected to the act of metal manipulation which I was currently undertaking, and I knew with certainty that this was what I was meant for. My path was clear.

After graduating, I travelled for a time, and lived in Melbourne, Australia for a handful of years. I soon discovered that not having a creative practice in my life was detrimental, and something I needed to avoid exploding.

Upon my return to Canada in 2014, I outfitted a jewellery bench in my home, and from there I have been working with metal ever since.

I would consider my aesthetic to be quite organic; evidence of the hand, imperfections, and allusions to natural processes are important aspects I aim to infer in the final design. A deeply rooted love of texture permeates my work.

Often times the creative process can be a very isolated one; the maker sits alone in their studio engrossed in their work for hours on end, only looking up and encountering others when looking to fill their belly or put on a pot of coffee. That’s why it’s important to have collectives, and studios, like Jewel Envy, not just for basic social interaction with other creatives, but to share knowledge and experiences with each other, and to foster a support network.

For this reason, and many others, I am excited to be a member of the studio, and look forward to creating, and engaging, in such a welcoming space.