My name is Olivia Krysa, and I am a grade 12 student at F. J. Brennan Catholic High School here in Windsor, Ontario. I am an artist, and have a small sole proprietorship business. I hand make jewelry and artwork. My business is called Jac Collective, and I started it in January 2020. I am an incredibly creative individual, and art is my escape. It has always been my favourite downtime since I was a little girl, and I aspire to be an animator one day. Jac Collective was a way for me to express this. Initially, I started my business on instagram almost as a portfolio of my artwork. In most of the first year of my company, I went by Livvy Creates, and I painted shoes. Here’s some examples of my early work.
With covid taking over and distributing my daily lifestyle, I’ve had a new spark light inside of me. This is what pushed me to do more with my small business. A few of my next steps currently to grow my business are starting my own website, along with using other platforms to build my customer market. Currently, I am only on Depop and Instagram. I have so many ideas for what my business could look like in the future, I just need to pursue them.
I am extremely excited for this co-operative learning experience with the EPICentre and Sho Art Studio to further explore my ideas. I have been provided with a business outline that enables a direct line of focus to further pursue a success business. I meet weekly with my own mentor in business to discuss what my next steps are, her name is Maureen Lucas. One of the first steps I had to take when starting the EPICentre placement was rebranding to a more professional name and doing a customer market survey. Currently, I am working on a competitor analysis of similar brands and companies in Windsor, so I can set Jac Collective apart.
Maureen aided in the process of a partnership that I have with Windsor Endowment for the Arts (WEA). WEA is a non-profit group in Windsor that supports the community in various ways, one of them being by supporting artists by project based grants. I now will be donating annually 10% of all my profits to WEA. This is something I highly value with. My brand strong relationships are incredibly beneficial in the art community.
My other placement at Sho Art Studio has been incredibly rewarding as well. At Sho, I’ve met an amazing group of people, and my three supervisors have taught me more than I could have ever imagined in only a few weeks. Lorraine Steele, Phil McLeod, and Susan McLeod, are my supervisors at Sho, and they are also the CEOS of the company. Lorraine and Phil are both visual artists, and I relate to them in that retrospect, I have learned a great deal artistically. Susan is the brains behind the whole operation, and has given me an abundance of important information about the business side of things.
The next big steps I have for myself and my company post co-op are partnerships and a big community project. I have an incredible idea for a self managing art venue to display and sell local artworks in the city. I am currently applying for grants to make this dream come true and get the financial support for it. Until then, I will keep on creating art.