Tag Archives: Local Artists

We Are…Bearhead Factory

Erin Merriman is truly an artisan in her craft. She is the creator behind Bearhead Factory – an experimental line of handmade jewelry that transforms symbols from their collective mythology into wearable art objects. Her vivid imagination and organic way of looking at life translates into her jewelry. Her pieces are the epitome of beautiful statement pieces.

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Where does the name “Bearhead Factory” come from?

“The name is actually now almost 10 years old! I had graduated from school, and was living in an old factory in Brooklyn, and just making tons of different kinds of art. I wanted a name that could be an umbrella or container for whatever I was working on. Around this time, I had a dream about a warrior woman wearing the most beautiful, intricate helmet made from the head of a grizzly bear. This dream woman at the time represented a fierceness of spirit that I was eager to harness/ channel into my business and life.”

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What inspired you to start making  jewelry? 

“I grew up in a very small town with not much to do, so I spent most of high school fantasizing about moving to New York City. When I finally got to art school in Brooklyn, I was surprised to find I missed the solitude of my family’s 100 acre tree farm. I chose jewelry as my major because there where only 3 people in that department, and the idea of being left alone to explore a completely new craft excited me. Also, whenever I would see a painting or sculpture I liked growing up, my first thought was always “ How can I wear that?” I am always inspired by the way jewelry allows us to explore ideas we are interested in by wearing them on our bodies.”

What inspires you, in general?

Carl Jung, Star Trek The Next generation, Dreams, New Aged self help books, good conversation, vintage textiles, textures in general

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Where do you make your work?

“A chance encounter with a local Armenian goldsmith lead to an unlikely friendship and an invite to share his studio in Downtown San Diego. This has given me access to so many tools I had only dreamed of owning, and also immersed me in a completely surreal work environment! Many a late night we have spent there together, me grinding metal, him chain smoking and watching Russian Christmas pageants on the big screen TV. He’s always trying to get me to stop working and have a shot of cognac with him.”

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How did you end up in San Diego?

“My husband and I left Brooklyn for an  earthship in New Mexico, where I briefly considered becoming a homebirth midwife. Instead, we ended up having a homebirth! As soon as our son arrived, we realized how important it was to us both that he had an extended family. My husband is from San Diego, so we just packed up everything and moved here when our son was 8 weeks old. I thought we would just make it work for a couple of years and then choose our next adventure, but San Diego has shown up for us in really incredible ways, and I couldn’t be happier living here.”

What do you like about San Diego? What do you like about North Park?

“It feels like an unbelievable blessing to get to live walking distance from the ocean. The weather is mild all year, and the creative community in San Diego is very collaborative and welcoming. Most of our friends live in North Park, so that is my very favorite thing about the neighborhood, but there is also good yoga and vintage/ resale spots too.”

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Where do you see your artistic endeavors taking you?

“I am getting ready to launch a new project. We will of course still make jewelry collections, but within a more conceptual context, including  lots of  exciting collaborations. There are so many stories about how to be an artist or run a business out there, but most of them feel isolating, limiting and outdated to me.  I am meeting a lot of amazing artists who are feeling the same way, and together we are writing a new story of how to engage creatively in life in an authentic way that leaves room for experimentation, mistakes, individuality and imperfection. Perfection is numbing- Messy is more fun!”

Bearhead Factory jewelry pieces are originally designed and hand made. You can shop some of her specialty pieces in store,and online. 

 

photos by: Chantal Pasag

 

 

 

Inside the Artist Studio

Hey Friends! It’s Monday, but we’re not mad at it. Ray at Night happened this past Saturday (if you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, do it! Every second Saturday of each month from 6-10 p.m on Ray street in North Park, San Diego),  and so did the very first “Inside the Artist Studio” tours, put on by North Park for the Arts and sponsored by North Park Main Street.  We got to be a part of it – Pigment owner and artist Amy Paul‘s studio was on the map. Aside from having a rad store, she also has a really awesome studio!

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Amy Paul_Studio Tours_North Park Oh look who stopped by!, Jim! One of our favorite and most supportive Pigment customers (check out the blog post we did on him and his wife here.)

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Other neighboring studios that participated in the tour:
Plus One Photography

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Plus One Photography owner Zeynep Dogu Cameron. She’s incredibly talented. Learn more about her here.

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Naughty Blonde Redux

naughty blonde-1naughty blonde-2naughty blonde-3Naughty Blonde Redux duo – Daphne (left) and Anna (right)

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Misty Hawkins

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What a great talented group of ladies! And a big thanks to Angela (Right: Executive director of North Park Main Street) and Jasmin (left: North Park for the Arts and Cirello Gallery) for putting this together. Looking forward to the next one!

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We Are….. Subterranean Coffee Boutique

Meet our new friends and neighbors – Subterranean Coffee Boutique (a recently new local business in North Park).


Why “Subterranean Coffee Boutique” – where did that name come from?
Gene: “From the book Subterraneans. Also, I like the word. And we are a kind of a hidden cafe.”

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What makes Pigment unique to you?
Kelsey: “Pigment is unique to me because it provides the most beautiful jewelry from local artists and it certainly adds strong character to North Park. The neighborhood would not be the same without it.  I strongly believe in supporting the small businesses, local artists and people with an entrepreneurial spirit. I know what it is like to have a dream to own your business, and I think its wonderful that Pigment can help others work for themselves as well. ”

Subterranean definitely envelopes a “neighborhood” coffee-shop feel. Kelsey and Gene are really welcoming. They have board games for the little ones, and a modest library for those who want to cozy up with a cup of coffee and a book. Plus, they sell these incredibly delicious homemade pop tarts!

Oh, and they make one of the best Turkey+Brie sandwiches in town.

Who’s a better cook – Gene or Kelsey?
Kelsey : “Definitely Gene. He gets very creative in the kitchen and comes up with some amazing recipes that customers love. He is the brains behind the menu for sure. I try to cook, but he is by far better than me!”

If you’re ever in the neighborhood (North Park in San Diego, that is) you should definitely pop in and say “hello” to Gene and Kelsey. They are a great new addition to the hood that we welcome with open arms!

Subterranean Coffee Boutique
3764 30th St, San Diego, CA 92104 // (619) 780-0916
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SubterraneanCoffeeBoutique

We Are…Oh My Dog Photography

These are our friends Mike and Tee who own the ever-so-wonderful Oh My Dog Photography, located on Ray street – neighbors to our pop-up shop.

Not only are they incredibly talented (dog) photographers, they are just all around cool people. I mean they love dogs, dare we say more than we do (?!) Mike has a few music projects on the side (Mostly Sunny and Skavolutionary Orchestra) while Tee pursues other photography endeavors (www.teetaylor.com). And they have been such a positive light to the neighborhood – Tee helps a great deal in leading North Park for the Arts who runs Ray at Night, a fun monthly art-walk on Ray street.

We bugged Tee with a few questions about our store and the neighborhood:

What is one of your favorite things about North Park? “North park is so diverse. I know it’s a cliché’ but it makes every part of living and working here a richer experience.”

What makes Pigment unique to you? “Walking into Pigment is like stepping foot into my favorite design magazine or blog. It’s is not just a feast for the eyes, but touching and smelling all of the wonderful items makes it a full sensory treat.”

Sweet little Gus posing for his portrait. Such a natural, having dog-photographer “parents”

Is there any one particular thing Pigment carries that you love?
“I love the *candles! How can one small thing change a whole room? They bring beautiful lighting, scents, just a better feel to where ever they are. They also make the perfect gift. Wait, Valentines Day is in 2 weeks so what I meant to say is that I LOVE the jewelry, [hint hint Mike].”

*The Voluspa candles have always been a best seller at Pigment, check them out here.

Yes, that is a picture of Gus on a vintage ring that Tee proudly wears.

Thank you Mike, Tee and Gus for the love and support!