This unique certificate provides you with the technical skills and industry knowledge needed to conceptualize and create jewellery for artistic expression or as a source of income. It is well-suited to anyone who is interested in beginning or advancing their skills in jewellery making and design - be it for personal enrichment or career interest. No previous experience is required; however, some studio work or hobby experience is advantageous.
During the program, you will explore a wide range of topics and apply professional techiques in jewellery making through extensive hands-on studio practice as well as demonstrations and lectures from skilled jewellery makers. The program focuses on metal techniques, including student work in base and precious metals. Courses emphasize individual creativity, giving you the opportunity to apply your learning to create your own designs.
In the first semester, you will begin with an overview of the jewellery design process, from how to break down a design to rendering sketches. You will learn basic metalworking skills and techniques, such as soldering and bezel setting, and you will explore a range of both high- and low-tech metal casting techniques. Topics also cover basic hand engraving as well as traditional and modern themes in NorthWest Coast First Nations jewellery art.
In the second semester, you will further advance your skills with metal techniques such as repoussage, and intermediate stone setting, and gain more expertise in a variety of casting techniques. Gemmology is introduced with topics in gem identification and classification. Business practices specific to jewellery artists are covered in both semesters, giving you a varied foundation of skills for self-employment and industry-specific marketing techniques to launch your career.
To Be Successful
A successful candidate will have:
- Some experience in design or crafts, or completion of NIC’s Silver Jewellery Making - Beginner’s course or Silver Jewellery Express I workshop.
- Good hand-eye coordination and physical dexterity.
Upon completion, you will have both the technical skills to produce your own metal jewellery and the business skills to present and promote these designs. Depending on your background and interests, you may seek employment opportunities in the retail jewellery industry or pursue self-employment by marketing your jewellery at festivals, fairs, art galleries or your own studio.
The program will be held over two semesters, from September to April, totalling 32 weeks. Classes are scheduled to take place at Campbell River campus from Monday to Thursday, 9 am to 3 pm (22 hours per week).
You are responsible for purchasing supplies and equipment as per the supply list provided ($1,300 approximately), ensuring you have ordered in time to have everything for your first day of class.
To see the range of supplies required for this year, please check the Metal Jewellery Design Supply List.
We encourage you to first search out what is at hand before making purchases. The supplies listed are the basics required for the program and by no means limit what you may purchase for your designs.
Budgeted amounts are minimums required for projects. If your work goes beyond project requirements, more supplies will be necessary.