In the Studio with contemporary jeweler Charmaine Vegas


My name is Charmaine Vegas and I am a
contemporary jeweler based in Long Beach. I was born in Compton. I lived in a few
other cities but I currently reside in Long Beach, California. I would say living
in multiple communities, cities and states and in multiple economic
situations has definitely added to the woman that I am today. I’m very fascinated with the human
experience and our obsession with perfection. So you will notice in my work
I intentionally will flaw them, things that are perfect can be a little
boring so I intentionally put in the imperfections and it adds interest. Your
flaws whether they’re audio like mine or internal, it definitely adds to who you
are I’ve been making jewelry for well over
12 years. My original major was fashion, at the
time I was doing a little pieces of jewelry, but I wanted to take
my skills a little further and so I enrolled in a metal smithing course. It’s
a lot going on when you’e in a a metal smithing studio. You have loud tools
you have a material that tells you what it wants to do so it can be very
intimidating. I didn’t go right into jewelry, I actually continued my fashion
career for around 12 years before I took that lunge. I had no idea you can
make a living as an artist. I think living in Long Beach translates
into the artist that I am. I’m more inspired by the community of Long Beach,
I think Long Beach is a great location for artists more so upcoming artists. My
goals for the next five years… Will I continue expressing myself through
jewelry? Who knows, but I see myself continuing my observation of the human
experience. That’s my sole purpose.

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