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A Life Outside Inspires This Silversmith

Of The Westfrom Orvis, features silversmith, angler, hunter, and writer Jillian Lukiwski talking about how her work is influenced by a life outside. 

Filed To: Video / Fly Fishing / Hunting / Best Jobs

Video Transcript

I'm a wife of a smoke jumper.
My husband's gone six months of the year.
I see him a couple days at a time throughout the fire season and it's hard on our marriage.
But, more than anything, I can thank fire for making me even more brave and even more fearless in how I approach my exploration of the natural world around me.
I don't remember specifically changing the way I was living, but I think I maybe started noticing things more.
After only two or three years of silversmithing I had started to become like an overworked piece of metal.
I was hardened.
I was brittle in some ways, and I had these ugly attributes rising to the surface that honestly I loathed within myself and I wanted,
I really wanted to overcome those things.
And I felt the very best when I was outside.
I started going outside with more intention.
I started stepping out the front door everyday,sometimes multiple times a day with
the intent of going outside to actually seek that refining heat that could soften me up,
make me supple, make me sensitive again and burn out the ugly attributes that I didn't want
scarring and scabbing the surface.
When I'm working with metal, I'm looking to create beautiful objects, but I'm also looking to translate
my life experience directly into what it is that I'm creating.
I like the pieces of jewelry that I'm making
to really be directly connected to and influenced by my daily life.
By the animals that I see when I'm outside
By the textures of the natural world that I'm living in
By the emotion that I feel when I'm out on the land
That bigness or the smallness that I feel inside of myself
and personal growth
The growth of the world around me and
the life and death cycles
I've been looking to translate that all into
metal and really reveal in simple ways for people
the way that I see the world and the beauty that I see
actually in the natural world.
I live in the high desert right now and sometimes it seems like
all the light in the world has settled over the canyon.
Just a sight for the soul and a sight for the eyes of the soul, really
if you can take all of that in I feel like I'm going to burst!
I feel filled up.
My creative wells feel filled up but I also feel ready to take on the next day.
I don't even need to sleep almost
like I just, I feel so filled up just by the beauty around me
in the natural world that I feel like I could
just begin again right then and there.