Hannah Cowan has always wanted to forge a career in jewellery design and goldsmithing. After completing Western University’s Bachelor’s degree program in Visual Arts, she enrolled at George Brown College’s Jewellery Arts program, where she learned the craft, over three years.
Hannah Cowan was determined to establish her career in creative entrepreneurship after she graduated. In the year following the program, she worked hard at a non-related 9-5 job to earn and save enough money to accumulate the equipment needed to start her own bespoke jewellery company.
Polishing lathes, large metal sheers, torch equipment, a jewellery’s bench, rotary equipment, power tools—the start-up costs of launching a jewellery design company adds up.
“Jewellery is not a cheap field to get into. The equipment alone is expensive,” explained Hannah. “At the time, there was no facility like Artscape Daniels Launchpad’s Jewellery and Fine Metals Creative Studio.”
When Hannah became an Artscape tenant in an affordable artist live-work space, the opportunity was transformative to her career path, which enabled her to set up her first studio in a worn-down loft space and left her full time job to launch Edith Hannah Fine Jewellery.
“When you have double rent and an artist income, and when you are in the beginning stage of any creative career, it always going to be a lot of two steps forward and a hundred steps backward,” she recalls. “The apartment has always been something that keeps me going during the harder times. I have been given this amazing opportunity to stay in this city and work in what I am trained to do, that I don’t want to let down the people who helped me get here. That’s a big reason why I joined the team at Artscape Daniels Launchpad.”
Now as a Studio Tech in Launchpad’s Jewellery + Fine Metals Studio, Hannah is taking on the role of facilitator, sharing both her insight into creative entrepreneurship for emerging jewellery designers as well as providing creative and technical skill development through the Creative Studio Workshops.
On January 9, Hannah Cowan will be leading the Jeweller’s Torch Basics workshop, where she will teach safe torch operations and fine metal fabrication. Participants will gain a better understanding of torch safety, flame types, torch tips, metallurgy, annealing, soldering, fusing, and more, while being able to ask Hannah questions about her path as a jewellery designer and small business owner.