Janet Walker, Biography – “It’s just what I do”

Putting wax Earrings on a Sprue base to be lost wax cast in Sterling

Janet Walker creating the Potlatch Earring and Pendant Collection

I’ve always known that I was an Artist even from my earliest self awareness. Drawing, painting, and making things were always the most personally satisfying adventures. I was encouraged at a very young age by my Grandparents and felt their love in their encouragement. Maybe that’s why I’ve always gravitated toward those experiences…I don’t know, but it’s just what I do.

Learning at an early age that if I focused on artistic experiences in my life that path was opened to me. Almost all the work that I found centered around artistic expression and I pursued them; Floral Arranging, Graphic Illustration, Interior Design, Landscape Design and Care, Advertising, Upholstery, Ivory Scrimshaw, Trade Bead Collecting, Jewelry Design and Creation, and Wax Carving. I loved them all, even the mundane parts of each of these jobs. They all have their “down and dirty” parts, but it didn’t bother me because I found the progressive steps to a beautiful finished project satisfying.

Since partnering up with Owen Walker and creating Walker Goldsmiths we’ve learned and grown and enjoyed this process. And I’ll tell you, Goldsmithing has some down and dirty parts. Lost wax casting and the wax burn-out required, sawing, filing, molten metal fumes, grinding, polishing, acid etching and metal oxidizing are just a few of the grunge tasks needing accomplished to create a gorgeous piece of jewelry. Not at all conducive to beautiful fingernails! The beauty that I’m exposed to in this career IS spectacular fun. Owen with his Archaeology perspective and Master Goldsmith experience has helped my experience also to be so much more rich and varied. We’ve created some real beauties over these 40 years and even some creations that shouldn’t have been, that we laugh about and swear “never to try that again”. But it’s been a wonderful and satisfying creating experience and so here I am still at it, manicure be dammed!

Maybe the most fun part is creating emotional jewelry items for others and seeing their satisfaction, like Custom Jewelry, Custom Rings, Engagement and Wedding Rings.  And there is no such thing as “junk jewelry” if it belonged to your Gramma, you want it repaired even if the so called diamonds are glass and the metal is pewter or something of lesser quality. Recycling old family jewelry has been a fulfilling challenge also; helping people decide what it is they want to do with the jewelry from family that they no longer wear.  It’s an emotional issue and of great value and I’d be honored to help reclaim, repair or make it into something wearable by you today. It is what I do and who I am.