Today, this talented jewellery designer, curator and tutor continues to follow her creative passions and produce collections by hand from her studio.
To explore exactly how influential Bright Young Gems was on her early career, we caught up with Amy to discover what the competition meant to her and what her advice would be to those thinking of entering.
Q. How did you find out about Bright Young Gems and what made you want to apply?
My university introduced me to Bright Young Gem’s and encouraged me to apply, I thought it would be a good opportunity to apply for my first competition and had no idea I would actually end up winning an award, it really gave me the confidence to push forward in my first year of independent making.
Q. Why was entering important to you?
If you are serious about turning your work into a career, it’s a must. It gives you a springboard, a sense of credibility and a confidence boost to get you going in that important first year.
Q. What would be your advice to other recent graduates or final year students who are thinking of entering Bright Young Gems?
Talk to everyone! It is so important when you get these opportunities to talk to everyone and anyone who approaches you. Don’t favour people who you recognise from the industry, because you never know who everyone else is.
I currently work for a wonderful contemporary gallery in Leeds and am often mistaken for ‘just another student’ when attending shows to find new makers… you never know who could be approaching you.
Q. What have you been doing since securing the Highly Commended at Bright Young Gems 2015?
As well as continuing to make and pursue my jewellery career, I have also gone into curation. Having the Highly Commended Award from IJL definitely gave my brand a sense of credibility.
To be recognised by such a major jewellery organisation was a dream, and I was able to advertise and use this to show that although I was a new graduate, I was a serious maker wanting to become part of the industry.
I am now a self employed contemporary jeweller, continuing to create new collections and explore cement as a unique jewellery material. I also work as the Jewellery Coordinator for the Craft Centre and Design Gallery Leeds.
I have collections available through contemporary galleries across the country, I have exhibited at shows in the UK and Holland and have no intention of slowing down any time soon! I am hoping to begin teaching jewellery classes from my studio this year, as well as launch a new collection and take part in several UK shows.
To read more terms and conditions about Bright Young Gems, please click here.
What is the IJL Journey?
As part of our IJL 365 approach, the IJL Journey extends far beyond our three-day trade event. It offers myriad career-boosting benefits, including a mentoring package, workshop days, ongoing pricing, branding and marketing support, and introductions to key industry figures.
This invaluable advice prepares each Bright Young Gem, KickStarter and Design Gallery Exhibitor to meet the 9,000 strong jewellery audience at IJL 2018, from September 2-4.
IJL is #withyou offering career opportunities and the chance to grow your jewellery business, whether you are a student, recent graduate, emerging brand or established player. Speak to our team to find out more.
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