“I learn by watching, I did some sanding for my uncles, like on their bracelets. I started carving and really doing some hand saw work on [walrus] ivory back in 1974 when I moved down here to Quinhagak. I didn’t do it everyday, but anytime I had a chance. I worked for the State [of Alaska] for nine years, I was a tribal judge for a few years too. From A to Z, I have done a little bit of everything.
Homer Hunter, he was my favorite uncle, he passed on. He is who I learned from mostly. I get most my inspiration from my family, they all encouraged me, now I am showing my grandkids, they watch me and I give them gifts to inspire them.
Right now I am working on my first needle case, it almost looks like a needle case!” [Laughs] —John Smith is a Yup’ik artist from Quinhagak, Alaska.
- © Brian Adams
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- I AM INUIT