Artist Spotlight, Creekside Custom Creations

PoCo Inspired: Tell us a bit about yourself
Creekside Custom: I grew up as my parents called it "A Free Range Child", I ran barefoot in the forest, foraged berries for eating and moss for building forts. Ever since I was a child I've been collecting and admiring nature, my pockets heavy with things I've found along the way, so its no surprise I mixed nature and art together.
I am always getting into something new and expanding my artistic skills almost daily! Knowing that art can sometimes cost a lot to get into- I try to craft up affordable ways to get the job done and I find so much pleasure from doing that.
I grew up in rural Manitoba, but I have been travelling & moving from town to town across Canada for about 8 years now, but Winnipeg/ Manitoba will always be “home”. I have half an education degree completed, with plans to finish in the coming years. In hopes teach art and share my love of it with young students.

PoCo Inspired: When did you first start making jewellery and what was the first piece you ever made?
Creekside Custom: I’ve been playing with just about any craft supplies I can get my hands on since I can remember. I clearly recall the beading kit I received for Christmas one year, probably 20 years ago. I was hooked and made bracelets for just about every person I came in contact with. I started taking art more seriously as I got into high school mainly because I had an inspiring art teacher that saw my potential before I did. I started with watercolour painting and soon figured out I needed more control so I moved swiftly over to oil and acrylic. My hand kept reaching for acrylic so I just went with it.. for YEARS. I started a clothing customization business out of pure desperation to get out of the 9-5 life as I was becoming sick daily with anxiety. I was painting artworks onto shoes, jackets and pants. By turning my passion into a business it created a stress I couldn’t manage, which is when my Tourettes became so severe that I couldn’t hold a paint brush. The stress of creating enough art to pay the bills was too much to handle. I was forced to find a new medium that I didn’t need as much control in. It took a while and a lot of Cognitive Behavioural therapy but I was able to control my Tourettes enough to get into epoxy and start working on jewelry. I still can’t paint, my therapist doesn't think I ever will be able to again without having a major tic episode because the stress I have connected with it.
I still have my first piece of jewelry I created under the Creekside name. Its a horribly assembled necklace on chain that will probably break at the slightest tug, but I will cherish it nonetheless.
PoCo Inspired: What inspires your creativity when making a new piece of jewellery?
Creekside Custom: I feel that I touched on this in answer #1, but I am heavily inspired but nature and the colours of fall. When I feel any type of creative or personal blockage I take my shoes off and ground myself in nature. I grew up being taught that nature is our first and most important Elder and to appreciate it in all forms.
PoCo Inspired: What is the single most important skill you have learned and why?
Creekside Custom: I’m not sure if its the “skill” you’re looking for but I have to say the most important skill I’ve learned is "complete honesty" with myself and my customers. There is no reason to hide the process, the ugly messy process. Like I said- I like to do things the affordable way, even if it means its a ugly process with a few more steps. I was always embarrassed to share that side to my customers because I wanted them to think I was that perfect cookie cutter jeweller that you see on Pinterest with a clean workstation… but I'm not and very far from. Coming to terms with that has helped me grow an amazing community that are always here for the ride no matter how we get there. Admitting that I am chaos and being honest about it has helped me open up and be willing to try more things without being scared to fail and has brought me more ideas than before.
PoCo Inspired: What challenges do you face in your work?
Northern Heart: Imposter Syndrome! The worst thing I find myself doing is scrolling social media and thinking “oh I can do that”. I strive to be unique and make ‘One-Off’ Products but its hard to not get so heavily influenced by things I see all day. Falling into the mainstream is so far from where I want to be, so getting inspired from nature is what I am trying to do the most- but that takes a lot more time than just making the same thing you see another artist making. Oh the struggle of a modern day artist!
PoCo Inspired: What is your biggest achievement so far in your business?
Creekside Custom: My biggest achievement is probably selling out at the Tattoo Convention over the summer. I always get made fun of for how much stock I bring, but I guess I always have high hopes. This time is paid off. To say I cried is an understatement, I had to pull my car over on the way home to contain myself. I will never forget that feeling. I was assembling more at the table as I was selling out. It was insane, but the most amazing insane rush ever.
PoCo Inspired: Where can we find you to shop online or in-person?
Creekside Custom: I am slowly getting into the wholesale world, but right now I am solely selling through my Instagram at Creekside Custom Creations or though my Facebook which is also under Creekside Custom Creations I do have plans to open up my website in the coming week or when the new year rolls around and I announce some big news ;) when that does happen, it is