Marisa shuta is the jewellery designer and owner of Small Roar Studio. she is a self taught eclectic artist, currently living in Pennsylvania, usa, and who has a huge love for all things creative. She is a silversmith and metalsmith who treats all her designs like a blank canvas. Organically growing from nothing and each developing into a unique piece of jewellery.
She blends together different jewellery designs and styles from various sources, from bohemian vibes, to Native American culture, to punk metal. Never being scared to explore something new.
In all her art you can see her attention to detail. Using elements of nature, symbols, patterns, cultures, precious metal and gemstones in beautiful combinations. Creating unusual and stunning statement jewellery pieces that really speak to you.
If you are looking for jewellery that has a unique style and has the ability to communicate your own individual voice then look no further.
Marisa was kind enough to do a Q&A with me. She chatted about her work, jewellery and design, and much more.
Tell us about yourself, and your love affair with Jewellery.
I’m Marisa and I am such a mixture of so many different adjectives and verbs! I’m a combat veteran, mother, artist, and social worker. I started making jewellery at 8 years old, selling bracelets made of string at summer camp, to pay for vending machine snacks! It’s kind of comical as my bracelets at summer camp got so popular the camp counsellors had to shut it down as all the campers were asking their parents for money all the time!
When did you first realise you wanted to make Jewellery as a career?
I never honestly thought about turning jewellery making into a career.
Everything kind of fell into place. I started practicing with copper and was practically begging people to buy my items so I could purchase silver to start working with it.
Eventually I started drawing my own designs and was very surprised when I started to sell things. So I don’t like to think of it as a career, just a hobby. I think that is important for someone like myself. If I ever think of anything I love doing as a career, I start to get bored and resist. So, I just kind of go with the flow and keep making, and thankful that people keep purchasing!
The best thing about making jewellery is meeting and talking to people. It’s really an enjoyment for me to interact with similar artists, or customers.
As a designer, where do you draw your inspiration from?
My background is in painting and other mixed media art. So a lot of my ideas just come from my doodles. I try to think of every piece of jewellery as almost like a canvas. I don’t want to paint the same piece every time much like I don’t want to make the same item every time.
How would you describe your designs?
I find comfort in small details. I pull a lot of inspiration from bohemian vibes but I’m also not afraid to approach my darker punk/metal side.
What is your favourite piece you’ve ever created?
One of my dear friends trusted me make her a piece with her significant lovers ashes. It was really important for me to create her something so beautiful and intimate. I made her a pendant with his initials and an opal on it.
It was really crazy because while working on it the ashes got very hot and I had intended to put a different stone on it to begin with. But something told me to put an opal on it, and I’m glad I did because I didn’t even know it was his birthstone! We were both so shocked.
She wears it everyday, and I then made one for their daughter as well. I love the fact now that she can carry around a little piece of her father and hold him close.
What are you currently working on?
Currently I’m working on a bohemian engagement/wedding set. I’m also playing around with stamps and trying to get a feel for Navajo influenced style.
What advice would you give to someone interested in becoming a jewellery designer?
Don’t make things to “sell” just do what you love. Sure, we all want to make money but don’t lose your vision. Be weird! Be unique! It’s really a piece of art that you make for someone else to express themselves on their body. Your pieces will be passed down for generations, so make it something like a little story being told. Oh and also – have fun! Don’t take anything too seriously!