Business Name: Aurora Artistic Website: www.auroraartistic.com Established: 2020 Questions answered by: Amy Caldwell
Can you please fully explain your business or product line?
I take photographs of the northern lights and make them into jewelry and other items such as bookmarks and keychains. I do all of the photography, photo processing, editing, printing, and assembly of the jewelry items myself.
The only part I don’t do is fabricate the metals, but I do try to use affordable, lead/nickel-free and hypoallergenic materials whenever possible. My business is just starting out, so I am always looking for new/different items & materials and trying out new things.
With the Winnipeg local maker community continuing to grow, what is the most important thing you’d like potential customers of your company to know?
I’ve only been in business officially for under a year, but I have been taking pictures of the northern lights for several years now and have always been involved in artistic pursuits; everything from music to drama to visual arts like drawing and photography.
I spent over a decade of my life working in art and graphic design, so art is a huge part of my life. To capture something as breathtaking as the northern lights and be able to take the images with you in nontraditional forms was a very appealing idea to me. I like to think of my pieces as wearable art and I’m excited to share my version of wearable art with the world.
What inspired you to start your business?
I love the idea of being able to take the northern lights with you. To be able to literally wear them around your neck, and to be able to easily and affordably gift them to friends and loved ones. Traditional prints and canvases are beautiful, but they can be big and hard to move, to send as a gift, or even find the right frame for. I wanted to try something less physical and cumbersome.
I also live in a place where the lights are often active and many talented photographers sell their own photos, so I wanted to find a way to present mine in a new way. Since I’m a lover of jewelry myself, it was a natural way for me to try something a little different. I started selling them at craft sales a few years ago and received such a great response when I told people that they were my own photos that I decided to try and make it into a full-fledged business.
What was the biggest struggle you’ve had to overcome?
Learning about business is still something I work on every day. As someone who has been artistically inclined since birth, I’ve never had an interest in anything scientific, mathematical, or business-related and really never had much of an aptitude for anything outside of the creative realm.
I now know that I can’t only be successful in the artistic part of the process; I need to know my books just as well. I’m working hard, still learning, and I’m sure I have a lot of learning yet ahead of me!
What has been your biggest success as a maker?
So far, I think the biggest success has been all the positive feedback. Hearing from customers who have really enjoyed my pieces or who have congratulated me for having the idea to do it. It was a passion of mine that I’ve been fortunate enough to turn into a source of income and I really do love what I do.
I’m just getting started, so I hope that there will be more successes in the future, but for the moment having control over my company and still getting to do what makes me happy feels like a pretty big success.
Do you have any advice that you would pass on to someone hoping to start up their own business or product line?
Learn as much as you can about how to start a business before you launch. There are lots of resources out there through social media as well as free webinars through the Winnipeg World Trade Centre and other agencies that can really help.
Please share any upcoming events as well as the best place(s) for people to purchase your product!
I’m always open for business online and often have special sales or discounts.
You can also sign up for an email newsletter on the main page of my site which will keep you updated any time there’s a deal or promotion happening.