The Love Local Makers Market is the only dedicated local artisan craft market in the Mountains
Hub Program Leader Louise Hales says the Makers Market is a great opportunity for local producers and creators to showcase their wares in the creative community space of the Hub.
“Many of our artisans are purveyors of slow wares, hand built and thoughtfully crafted items while others are entrepreneurial. What they all have in common is a love of living and creating in the Blue Mountains,” says Louise.
Milliner for theatre, opera and film, Christine Thompson, has been making hats for more than 25 years and is based in her Woodford studio. She says she always wanted to be part of the world of theatre and, while she worked hard, she was fortunate enough to learn her craft from some of the best industry experts.
Starting at Opera Australia as an assistant and rising to Head Milliner over 15 years Christine has had a lot of experience with drama.
“Creating hats and headwear for theatre is always an interesting experience, sometimes stressful, but overall fun,” Christine says.
She credits the most fun she had was creating the hats for the Hygge scene in Frozen- the musical production. Christine’s hats are highly sought-after.
Many of the artisans generate their work out of a love of their craft while managing busy lives and more conservative work but they still find the time to create.
Jeweller and Faulconbridge local Jane Tadrist balances her love of metalwork and silversmithing making exquisite jewellery, with her work as an art therapist helping those most vulnerable.
“Art is such a powerful form of expression and can be so helpful for those who are marginalised or voiceless in daily life,” Jane says. Her work with young offenders started by accident. “Metal, tools and young men is a good fit,” she says.
Of her creative practise she is passionate. “I am drawn to metal in general as I love the alchemy of the colours it creates. Many of the techniques are ancient and the connection between makers in antiquity and today is fascinating to me.”
Inspired by her love of nature and the surrounding environment her work brings these elements into her jewellery pieces. “I love the transformation from unassuming piece of metal into a beautiful enduring object,” she says.
Another Faulconbridge resident Sharron Lee of S.Mountain Ceramics (pictured) balances full time work as a high school art teacher of 28 years and credits doing a little bit of art-making each day as essential to maintaining her love for ceramics.
“I have an insatiable thirst for learning and teaching, I am inspired by so many makers, especially in the Blue Mountains community,” Sharron says.
Inspired by the mindful nature of Japanese ceramic practices Sharron says it is what revives her at the end of a busy week. “Clay is my stillness, it forces me to sit, to loosen my shoulders and breath.”
Sharron surrounds herself with other creatives to support and inspire her in what she calls her ‘makers tribe’. “I would recommend that any maker, parent, worker and creative seek out their tribe… This keeps our work fresh and moving forward.”
“The diversity and depth in the Blue Mountains makers is incredible and I love that the makers markets have been revitalised to enable artist and artisans to showcase their creative practices,” Sharron says. “From fine arts, artisans, community groups - we are blessed to be able to create, make, and share with our community.”