In the Studio With Meghan Patrice Riley

Meghan Patrice Riley is a New York-based jewelry artist who mixes metals with textile techniques and a 2015 PMA Craft Show Artist.

Where is your studio?

My studio is located in Greenpoint, a traditionally Polish neighborhood in Brooklyn, NY, overlooking Manhattan Midtown and the Empire State Building.

I've set up a full metals studio with a soldering station, two fabrication benches, and a lofted office for all the non-making that goes with making. We also have a mini-kitchen area because snacks and tea make life better.

Why did you choose this space? What do you like about it? What makes it special?

I searched everywhere but this spot was my favorite because it's close to Williamsburg, food, the post office, the police station, the park, and all the bustling activity I need while I walk around taking breaks from making.

I love the proximity to life in NYC but I also love having this respite that’s tucked into its own small-town-esque neighborhood. The studio is filled with other makers—ceramicists, illustrators, jewelers, custom surfboard fabricators, record producers. It's a fascinating cross-section of creatives.

 

Describe a typical day at work.

My typical day starts with a HUGE coffee, a review of paperwork and email, and then I check in with my assistants on the schedule for the day or any questions they have with regards to patterns, making, fabrication, spreadsheets, and orders. But that's where the normalcy ends—it's a swiftly tilting and constantly changing schedule. If we're working on orders for shipment then I'm chained to the desk making and mentoring on patterns. If I'm doing a paperwork day, then I'm focused at the computer and putting out fires. My favorite days have a blend of the two with lots of walking around and drawing mixed in. I also try to not go to the studio one day a week so I can venture out to museums, galleries, and to just meet with other artists and poke around their studios.

What's the most fun/interesting thing you've done in the studio?

Play dress-up! Me and my assistants try on the work constantly and then ham it up for each other. It's instant feedback on whether or not a piece is working and it's just FUN! I definitely dress for the studio in anticipation. I make people come over and I pull mountains of work so we can just play. Because why not? and why else? Hands down, it’s the best perk of the job.

 

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