Leyda Campbell of Swan Lake is a talented artist and jewelry designer. Her funky, modern aesthetic is a reflection of Leyda’s fun personality. I love the colors she puts together in her pieces. She works out of St. Louis, Missouri, and says anything and everything–her environment, mood, the colors she sees–can inspire one of her supercool creations. I’m so glad she stopped by for a chat!
Have you been formally trained as an artist? (If so, where, and which degrees do you have?)
I am currently working on my BFA in graphic design with a minor in interactive web design
Have you always loved making jewelry? What do you love most about it?
Making jewelry is something I’ve been doing for years and it brings me a lot of joy. It’s a great creative outlet and I love the challenge of coming up with new designs or working with new techniques or materials. My favorite aspect of making jewelry is taking an idea in my head and turning it into something tangible that I can share with others.
How did you embark upon a career as a crafter? Do you have a “day job” too?
Growing up, punk rock ethos were important to me and a big part of that was DIY. There was a certain freedom in feeling like you didn’t have to have money or a degree to do what you loved you just did it. I basically just decided one night in 2008 to go for it and I opened my first shop on Etsy, The Sparrow Fist. I learned a lot from my first shop but I wanted to go in a different direction so in 2011 I opened Swan Lake. I am currently a full-time student so I don’t have a day job but I would love a chance to make Swan Lake a full-time thing.
How would you describe your design aesthetic?
Where do you get your materials?
That’s a secret! But seriously I get stuff from everywhere: Etsy, various online supply shops, flea markets, estate sales. If I see something that I think I can use in a design I buy it.
You have a lot of cool geometric designs. What inspires you to create a certain kind of piece?
Walking outside, seeing a film, reading a book–any of those things might trigger an idea. It could be a certain color or pattern or even just a mood and it will become the basis for one of my designs.
Name three things that inspire you in general…
Music, film, and other artists
What are your hobbies and interests outside of your work?
I like to go to flea markets with my husband, work on projects around my house, read, and bake. I have a weird obsession with economics and so I check the stock market daily. I don’t know if that qualifies as a hobby but I do it a lot.
Ok, you’re stranded on a desert island. Which five things can’t you live without?
Well if I could I would just bring my family but if that wasn’t an option I would bring:
1. My IPhone
2. My bed
3. A large crate of Diet Coke
4. My Kindle
5. My sketchbook (for doodles and lists)