I’m a transplant from Seattle. After traveling in a VW bus around the US and living in many cities including DC, Santa Cruz, Sacramento and Seattle I chose Maine as my place to settle in and get more serious about my creative work.(see below)
My work includes Large scale Wall Art, hand forged iron work and welded sculpture, custom furniture designs, Sterling and Copper Jewelry, Mixed Media media and Up cycled work, Custom Copper work. I tend to work with what inspires me at the moment.
I’m best known for my jewelry made from the Reclaimed copper from the Maine State House Dome.
My Studio, now known as the “Belle creative arts center” is located at 87 High street in Wilton, Maine across from Kineowatha park. Formerly the ‘Wells Fiddlehead cannery’ operating for 4 generations canning dandelions and fiddleheads is having a second life it’s next incarnation. As I build it out, I will offer classes in welding, blacksmithing, copper work, plasma cutting, pottery, jewelry and more. Please sign up on the website for updates
In 2018 I opened ‘Vera’s Iron and Vine’ at 127 Broadway Farmington, Maine. The shop is A collective of Artisans from the Western Mountains region. Many of my original works, Hand forged shelving, Artisan jewelry and furnishings Can be seen and purchased at that location Tuesday-Saturday 10-5.
***To be Soft and Bold is an Artful way to live https://www.verajohnson.net/get-personal
As a kid, being in my dad’s wood shop filled me with such curiosity. I loved the smell of sawdust and was fascinated with all the different tools. In high school I took a shop class where we made small wooden toys.
In my 20’s I took a welding class. The teacher determined immediately I wasn’t in the class to become a welder. He recommended I go take the blacksmith class, and that was it…I was hooked.
The relationship between the steel, the fire and the human with the hammer is the divine 3. Everything is transformed on a molecular level. To be able to heat and manipulate steel, changing the shape, never fails to fascinate me.
My desire to work with steel developed as I realized that soft isn’t always the way to walk. Own a hammer and know how to use it.
Having worked with clay for years before welding and blacksmithing, the concept of material manipulation was key to my interest that continues today with almost any material.
I’ve worked with different mediums over the years. These include reclaimed wood and found objects, pastels, watercolors, acrylic, and clay- hand building technique being favorite. Copper is my most current steady medium. I find it to be alive with possibility, warm and energetic.
Whether it’s a garden I’m transforming or a piece of metal, I am in a relationship or dance with the material and feel a freedom of expression that comes from somewhere outside of myself.
Heart, Head and Hands-the divine 3- again
Artists I’ve worked with:
-David Lisch- N.A. master Damascus knife maker
-Shannon Buckner- Seattle based blacksmith
-David Tuthill- Seattle based blacksmith
-Dana Sanderson- Mississippi Artist, Master potter, Flint Knapper and archaeologist
-Scott Shattuck- blacksmith and teacher
-Mimi Riley -artist blacksmith and welding teacher
Artists who gave shape and inspiration to my work:
Our Products Are Available At The Locations Below
127 Broadway Farmington
River Roads Gallery Skowhegan
Belgrade homes Belgrade