Crafting Her Own Life

Cedar-Eve Peters Lives the Self-Supporting Dream

Cedar-Eve Peters sits at her booth at the Concordia Farmers Market Shannon Carranco

Montreal based artist Cedar-Eve Peters is a regular at the weekly Concordia Farmers’ Markets.

Concordia University, Peters is successfully pursuing her passion as an artisan. The artist makes brightly colored bead pendant earrings and chokers, as well as t-shirts printed with her own drawings.

Peters was born and raised in Toronto where she attended an arts focused high school. The artist moved to Montreal when she was 18 years old to study at Concordia where she focused on improving her skills as a painter and drawer. After graduating, she took up beadwork and has been making beaded jewelry ever since.

Peters’ art is heavily influenced by vivid dreams she has as well as other artists.

“I just sit down and start creating, subconsciously I have a bunch of ideas,” she says. “For beading, I get inspiration from different flowers, animals or coral reefs. Elements of nature inspire the jewelry. For my drawings and paintings, I get inspired by different stories I heard growing up.”

Her dreams often inspire different color patterns for her jewelry and the imagery that she draws and paints. The idea of a shapeshifter in Ojibwe culture often comes up in Eve’s drawings, as well the relationship between humans and animals.

Some of Eve’s current projects include holding workshops at Concordia’s Aboriginal Student Resource Centre and making custom jewelry for clients. The McCord Museum’s boutique also carries some of her jewelry.

“Don’t let someone tell you that you can’t do something, especially since art is so versatile. There’s no formula so if you really believe in what you’re doing, then continue to do it.”

The artist is in the sixth year of a daily self-portrait project where she takes a picture of herself with a Fujifilm Instax Mini every day and sometimes she draws on them.

“I try to do something every day,” says Peters, adding that she is always creating.

Peters’ art is showcased around the city and she is going to partake in the Etsy Montreal show in April.

“I’m living as a full-time artisan and I think I’m blessed in that way because not everyone can live off their art,” she said. “It’s nice to get recognition for something that I just feel inclined to do.”

To aspiring artists, Eve says the best advice she can give is to never give up.

“In university, I had professors telling me that what I was doing didn’t make sense,” she says. “It’s important to keep in mind that not all professors know what they’re saying. There’s no formula so if you really believe in what you’re doing, then continue to do it.”

To Peters, art is a form of therapy. “If I didn’t have art in my life, I don’t know where I would be,” she says. “It keeps me grounded. I think color is really healing and I want others to feel it, too.”