Life can take a lot of twists and turns, and sometimes your passion doesn’t make itself known to you until…well, until you find it.
Amelia Marks has experience in many areas; fashion and textiles, marketing, health food, and advertising. You could argue that her ultimate career as a jeweller was the culmination of the creative and sensual sensibility that underpinned her earlier pursuits, and that would make sense.
However, it’s clear that those endeavours were simply signposts to her true calling. Amelia recently won “Graduate of the Year” (GOTYA) in the Vic/Tas Design Institute of Australia’s Jewellery category, and will be competing against the best Jewellery finalists from across Australia in the national AGOTYA competition in May.
How did this mother of three get here?
“I decided to try jewellery making in my spare time after having my second child. I started my own resin jewellery label, selling through markets, retailers and online,” says Amelia.
“After taking a short silver-smithing course, I knew I had discovered my passion and decided to enrol at Melbourne Polytechnic to get more rigour around what I did. I always wanted to work for myself but also wanted the interaction with other professionals in the field. I wanted the stimulation of working with the best in the industry.”
Amelia completed the Advanced Diploma of Jewellery and Object Design full-time, with class flexibility allowing her to work around her family’s busy schedule. She also caught the eye of her teachers, who quickly identified her as a student with great potential.
“We have very high expectations of our students and encourage them to do their best, and Amelia really rose to the challenge,” says Lynley Traeger, one of the passionate teachers in the Melbourne Polytechnic Jewellery program.
“The students have the opportunity to organise and host the annual fundraising Jewellery Auction which funds the student exhibition, and Amelia really threw herself into it. She drew on her marketing background to get a great result. Success in Jewellery is so much more than just technical skills; it’s creativity, it’s business and marketing, it’s the ability to manage constructive relationships with other people in the industry.”
Amelia, who graduated in 2016, was approached by Bini Gallery in Fitzroy to stock her pieces, and also won the Arbor Mentorship Award, a huge testament to her skill and craftsmanship. She is now working with Ellinor Mazza, Director of Arbor in Brunswick, on a jewellery range that will debut in the store in coming months.
If you’d like to see samples of Amelia’s gorgeous work, we recommend a visit to her website, ameliamarksmakes.com
Main photo: Copyright Elleni Toupmas
Media enquiries should be directed to Melbourne Polytechnic Media Officer, Anita Coia, on 03 9269 1251 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Melbourne Polytechnic operates across seven campuses and five specialist training centres throughout Melbourne. The institute delivers high quality vocational and higher education in industry-standard facilities.
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Media enquiries should be directed to the NMIT Communications Officer, James Gardener.