As some of you may know we are a participating business of the KCR Friends Card Program! Photo by Jake Sherman
🐝 Meet Gerry! Local Candle Maker of Kootenay Candles!
✨Gerry has been supplying us with her beautiful, hand-made, beeswax candles for countless years. In celebration of Bee Month, our pollinator awareness month, we thought we would conduct a little interview with Gerry!
Gaia: So, tell us a little bit about YOU! Tell us about your background, experiences, other artistic endeavors you might have...
Gerry: I grew up & graduated in Creston. I moved away for about 15 years and moved Back in 1993 raised to raise my kids. I bought Kootenay Candles in 2010. Some of my favourite activities are camping, fishing, hunting, quading, quilting, card making, horseback riding and gardening.
Gaia: What prompted you to start making candles?
Gerry: I dabbled in making candles when my kids were young, but it was just for fun! My youngest opened a business here in Creston & he needed a candle supplier. He said “Mom, Kootenay Candles is for sale, you should buy it!" So I did! That was 2010 and it seems like yesterday.....
Gaia: Why is it important to you that you use beeswax for your candle making? Have you tried other waxes in making your candles & what was the result?
Gerry: I work with a lot of different types of wax. Each wax has its own special traits, but my favorite is beeswax because it is so simple. It’s a traditional wax, it has it’s own great honey smell, it is hypoallergenic, clean burning, longer lasting and has a brighter flame. But most of all for me, it’s 100% natural.
Gaia: Can you explain what “blooming” is?
*Notice the clear wax on the left side & cloudy wax on the right.
Gerry: Well “Bloom” is a good thing, it tells you that your candle is 100% beeswax. It is simply a crystal like substance that appears on the candle over time. Nothing is wrong with your candle! It adds a unique look to your candle that some people really like. If you are the type who doesn’t like the bloom, simply buff your candle with a soft cloth and it will shine like a new penny! Or if your candle has nooks and crannies, use a quick pass over with a warm blow dryer.
Gaia: What is your favourite part about candle making?
Gerry: For me it’s the art of taking something Mother Nature has given us and using it to create something else that is still in its' natural form. I have really added nothing but a wick to my candles and a new form for it to be enjoyed & appreciated in.
Gaia: What is the most challenging part of candle making?
Gerry: I guess it’s the ones that don’t turn out.. although I recycle them back into the mix, it’s a lot of work and if the temperature fluctuates or something comes out of a mold poorly, then all that time and energy was spent for nothing.
Gaia: How do you support our population of pollinators?
Gerry: I plant flowers & support local honey farms.
Gaia: What would be in your bag at Gaia Rising?
Gerry: Oh my gosh...... one of those big beautiful wind chimes!!
Make sure you stop by Gaia to see our large variety of Gerry's beautiful candles!
Check us out on Instagram @gaia_rising_metaphysical ✨
🐝All May long we are celebrating our magical pollinators!✨
Honey Bee candles has created the beautiful Peek-A-Bee candle to raise awareness about saving our bees!
All donations are given to the Honey Bee Research Centre at the University of Guelph.
To learn more about Honey Bee Research click the link below
We have a finite amount of these candles so stop & pick one up to support the cause!🕯️
Ontario born, long term B.C. resident John Proulx, talks to us about his art, inspiration and spiritual pursuits! His super psychedelic art is available in art cards at Gaia Rising!
Follow him on Instagram @gascanjohnny
Gaia Rising: Tell me a little bit about yourself. Background, where you grew up, just a brief history of YOU.
John Proulx: When I was about 2 yrs old my parents inherited my great uncle Rosere's trap line in Caramat, Ontario. There we lived off grid until I was about 9 yrs old. I attended an on-room school house, attended by maybe 10 students in total. At 20yrs old, I began my career as a Laboratory Technician and successfully managed Laboratory Services for about 18 yrs.
Gaia: What prompted your interest in art? Were there any art pieces, or was there a moment of inspiration that compelled you to pursue becoming an artist?
John: My biological father was a traditional carver and allowed me to help out in the shop as a small child. I was managing an Aggregate testing Laboratory in Surrey, BC and on a slow day I noticed that some of the stone in one of my samples was quite soft. I spent the afternoon carving the bust of a woman using a flat head screwdriver. After work I presented it to my wife and she insisted that I pursue stone sculpture as a hobby
Gaia: I noticed in your bio that you said you were a self taught sculptor, what kinds of materials did you work with to create your pieces? What did you sculpt? Why switch over to the other mediums that you work with now? Do you still create sculptures?
John: I sculpted stone and did a little wood work. I preferred working with stone though. For some reason I found the weight of the stone very satisfying and really enjoyed working with hand tools. Almost all abstract pieces that are surprisingly similar to the shapes in my current work. I just started sculpting a piece a couple months ago but I'm at a stand still until I acquire a couple of specialized tools.
Gaia: How does the experience between drawing and sculpting differ for you? Do you feel like you express different parts of yourself through creating different types of art?
John: I don't feel as though they differ much except that one is more labour intensive than the other and you can't hold a drawing the way you can hold a sculpture. Ok, now that I'm thinking about it; that represents a huge difference in that I have a more physical relationship with the stone.
Gaia: Can you tell us what influences your art now? Your designs are rather psychedelic… are you tapping into other realities through any practices like meditation?
John: Absolutely, for the most part I scry my sigils and Transcendental magick in the tradition of Louis Constant, Austin Osman Spare and George Cecil Jones. This practice is big part of my day to day life.
Gaia: Do you have any other creative or artistic pursuits that you like to express yourself besides sculpting, painting and visual art?
John: I do a little writing mostly on the subjects of Magick and Mysticism with a strong emphasis on left hand path traditions.
Gaia: Any projects you are planning that you want to share about?
John: In the short term, I'm working diligently on amassing enough work to show at Frog Peak Cafe in March and Mamma Sita's in May. In the long term I'm working on a Tarot deck.
Gaia: What is your favourite spiritual tool or what spiritual tools are you interested in?
John: Scrying mirrors, hands down.
Gaia: What is something positive you wish to see happen in this world?
John: I'd like to see our society (as a whole) move toward taking responsibility for encouraging and helping to secure the ultimate freedom of the individual. Rather than the current policy of stick and carrot control mechanisms designed to promote a false sense of order through uniformity and mindless conformity.
Gaia: What would be in your shopping bag at Gaia Rising 😊 ?
John: A new scrying mirror (currently scrying in black coffee) and a copy of the Book of Thoth.