“This is a story of Alicia O’Dell, a peek into the various facets of her personality, and her day to day life. She calls herself a nomad, and on a typical day, she is a loner, trying to understand her experiences, and turning them into jewelry designs in her studio. But once her products are ready, she is ready to stage as the Founder of AEO Designs, her self-starter jewelry brand. While she is absolutely focused in her studio, at home (which is another artistic expression of Alicia’s life), she is more of a thinker, and a cheerful, radiant personality to meet and hang around with. This is a synopsis of Alicia’s life, in 10 picture shots…”

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December 4, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, is working in an Artists Asylum in Somerville, handcrafting new pieces of jewelry for the busy holiday season. Taking inspiration from her personal travel experiences, which eventually became the reason for her to start the brand, she said, “I was born with nomadic heart. I’ve lived many places and constantly seek opportunities to travel, to explore. I am grateful for my journey, to connect profoundly with this strange yet familiar world. I process these experiences through my art, to find peace with the unanswered questions – a balance with the oppositions”. Photograph by Shraddha Gupta.

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December 4, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, a jewelry designer and metal smith, also the Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, is cooking in her house early morning, preparing before a long day at work at her studio space. Sharing her journey from a public health professional to a jewelry designer now, she said, “I have always worked mostly in reproductive health and as a sex educator, but jewelry was always like a constant side project for me, which kind of grounds me, and is a way to release my energy and chill me out. And it wasn’t until recently in June, that I decided to concentrate my energy more on my passion, quitting my day job and making jewelry full-time”. Photograph by Shraddha Gupta.

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December 4, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, a jewelry designer and metal smith, also the Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, is making herself a cup of morning coffee, preparing for a long day at work at her studio space. Talking about what a typical day in her life is like, she said, “I start early in the morning with a strong cup of coffee and head to the studio, which is based out of an artists asylum in Somerville. The studio is just a mile away, so I spend my mornings and early afternoons working, and a I mostly come back for lunch and head back. I mostly zone out into my work once I am in the studio, and often have to remind myself to eat, and take a break”. Photograph By Shraddha Gupta.

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December 4, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, is walking to her studio in the morning, ready to spend a long day at work making some handcrafted jewelry for a busy holiday season. According to Alicia, everything that she sees around her inspires her with new concepts and designs. She loves walking on the streets, and collecting the fall leaves, to observe the different textures on then that can inspire her. “For me, any moment can be an inspiration, even a fallen autumn leaf”, she said. Photograph By Shraddha Gupta.

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December 4, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, is working in an Artists Asylum in Somerville, handcrafting a new piece of metal jewelry. Elaborating on her inspiration process overtime, she said, “My designs and mediums are always evolving and reflecting these experiences. In Ecuador, a country rich with artisanal goods I was first introduced to natural dyes and intricate silversmithing. Living in Malawi I was inspired by the seasonally lived life – the raw connection to the earth. From this I started to experiment with clay and natural fibers. Lately, as I am at another of life’s transitions, a rebirth of my self, and I feel inspired by the contrast and relationship between metal and fibers”. Photograph by Shraddha Gupta.

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December 4, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, is working in an Artists Asylum in Somerville, handcrafting a new metal ring. Sharing her process, she said, “I don’t have a super formal process for making things, and usually I will see something and get an idea for it. Sometimes I design and sketch out more designs out of that idea, but most of times my final product comes into life while I am actually working in the studio, when I start seeing how it evolves in the process. It all starts with wire, and pieces of metal, and then they are sawed, cut and hammered together into an ornament”. Photograph by Shraddha Gupta.

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December 4, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, is working in an Artists Asylum in Somerville, handcrafting new pieces of jewelry. She loves her work space, and the idea of sharing it with other creative people at the same time. “We have community studios, and private spaces, for all types of artists, such as metal workers, wood workers, electronics, screen printing and the jewelry studio as well. It’s an awesome opportunity in making art financially accessible to people through this concept, and it has made me able to make jewelry of this level, just because the asylum is so well equipped. But what really makes a difference is being around this creative energy, and sharing ideas from different perspectives with other artists, which helps everyone in coming up with new ideas all the time”. Photograph by Shraddha Gupta.

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December 4, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, is working in an Artists Asylum in Somerville, handcrafting a new piece of metal jewelry. While being completely consumed in her process of work, she explained, “I love jewelry because it is that one thing, that makes me totally forget everything… I just zone out and totally focus on that. And in the other aspect, it has been a really great teacher to me, it has helped me understand things. It is the process of making things, that brings up new lessons to my life, and also just how I have started to process and understand my experiences”. Photograph by Shraddha Gupta.

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December 5, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, is displaying her products for sale, at the open house in an Artists Asylum in Somerville. Conducted twice a month, the event gives artists an opportunity to sell and showcase their products to visitors, by organizing a common market place within the studio. Participating for the first time, she said, “It’s a fun way for us to get together and sell our work it an artistic social space. We all have so many different types of products to bring together, from jewelry to furniture, and even robots. Its almost like a of crazy people with crazy stuff”. Photograph by Shraddha Gupta.

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December 4, 2015, SOMERVILLE – Alicia O’Dell, a jewelry designer and metal smith, also the Founder of AEO designs, a US based, metal jewelry brand, sitting and her house in Somerville. Sharing the secret behind her cheerfulness, she said, “I think Jewelry makes me happy. I make collections that are inspired by a journey I took, a the one range that bloomed me as person was – The Broken::Bloom collection. It was inspired by a trip I took deep into the heart of the blue ridge mountains. The solitude of the mountains brought an awareness inside of me. An awareness to the sensation of breaking. The necessity of breaking. A truth that the process of breaking is really the process of growing/expanding/blooming in the greatest way – to our authentic self”. Photograph By Shraddha Gupta.

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PHOTOJOURNALISM

A NOMADIC kind of an ARTIST.

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