OLA: What brought you to this part of the world ?
Stephanie: Anglesea and the Surf Coast has a beautiful energy about it and draws to it interesting, unique and soulful people. Although there are many perfect places to be in Australia and around the world I’ve found myself here since 2011. This area has a lot to offer a visual artist, with its magnificent scenery, good vibes and those who share it with you.
OLA: Who and what inspires your art ?
Stephanie: I’ve studied artists and their artwork and it’s all inspiring in different ways, people are inspiring through what motivates them to create, what messages they want to share and the process they choose to deliver it. When I’m designing a piece I’m thinking of either myself or the person I’m making for and allow all the amazing memories of artists, techniques and influences to guide me creatively. My parents are also an inspiration, my Dad Timothy Hocking a Master Potter and tertiary arts teacher taught me to draw among many other skills, I channel him to solve visual and technical construction problems, my Mum Roslyn Hocking studied graphic design teaching me style and impact, she brings me interesting bugs, bones and whatever else she finds, all which help keep my creative mind sharp in developing new designs and unique pieces. Once I have a plan I channel my Jewellery mentor and friend Jan Donaldson, PHD Fine Arts, she has taught me all the skills necessary to develop pieces with soul and quality, she guides me to understand how metal likes to be treated, manipulated, decorated and fixed, her research into artifact and identity helps me to understand why we do what we do. The patience and dedication required to make art is itself inspiring, the stories and sensitivities that become visual interpretations through individual characters is an endless investigation from the past to the present. From studies in sculpture I love Auguste Rodin, Henry Moore, René Jules Lalique, painters I love Vincent Van Gogh, Rembrandt, Salvador Dali, Leonardo Da Vinci, Amedeo Modigliani, Michelangelo. From drawing and figurative studies I love Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, David Palladini, Rick Amore, Arthur Rackham and then there’s the ladies Georgia O’Keefe and Frida Kahlo. Every new project leads me to research and development in discovering new inspirations and ultimately my love of nature, antiques, recycling, clever design, travel, music and movies are the aids I use to deliver my feelings through my artwork.
OLA:What are some of the challenges and joys of being an artist in a rural area ?
Stephanie: I love rural areas I was raised just out of Shepparton in Bunbartha near the Goulburn river. I’ve lived in big cities Melbourne, London, Hong Kong and as awesome as that is I prefer being around nature and a small community. It can be challenging to get yourself out there and at times a little isolating when you dive into your work though on the flip side the joys are worth any challenges. I have a little garden I look out on and find interesting shapes and textures to include in my jewellery, Point Road Knight Beach is a stones throw away and irresistible to wonder about to clear the mind walking in paradise. I may even bump into someone who’s wearing my jewellery which is a killer buzz! Local support is hugely appreciated and i can’t thank the community and galleries enough for connecting and getting involved, its does more than just keep me in business, it keeps me local and helps spread the love, appreciation and need for something handmade in Australia.
OLA: What are your hopes and dreams for the future?
Stephanie: I am fortunate to have a job that I love and able to live everyday in a beautiful place doing it. I hope handmade jewellery keeps increasing in popularity. I believe once you have something made for you it’s a no brainer to continue to support the artists that make things to last and personally guarantee you quality and value. Purchasing something made locally feels pretty amazing anyway so combined with the magic of meeting the maker who resonates with you is truly unbeatable.
My mind drifts off thinking about meeting new and amazing people with fantastic ideas they want to see made and myself tinkering away in my studio designing pieces that bring happiness to whomever wonders across my work.
I hope I can keep sharing my love of handmade and dream of all the tools and techniques I’m yet to try and all the pieces I hope to create. Making jewellery for a living is rewarding in many ways, it teaches me to observe and over deliver, not every piece is made to sell, so much knowledge is gained in the exploration of craft. I’m always totally chuffed being able to create for a living.
OLA: What do you love to make?
Stephanie: I’m currently working on a wedding ring that features a kangaroo toenail, nothing is off limits in the Ginkoh studio. I love challenges that promote learning something new and appreciating the weird, quirky materials and concepts. Meeting the people who buy my work or commission a piece gives me a lot joy. I welcome everyone to my studio and home display to see how Ginkoh Jewelley is meticulously crafted. The devil is in the details and I’m mad about up-cycling found objects such as coins, cutlery, horn, opals etc. I’m obsessed with utilizing lost wax casting to carve and cast interesting forms into Gold, Silver, Bronze etc, etching free hand surface patterns and symbols also evolve to marry with my work. The pleasure is in the process and I’m organically driven to pair all my influences together to make, redesign or repair rings, earrings, lockets, bracelets, necklaces, buckles, cuff links and more, all one of a kind pieces for both men and women.