Shop for Jewelry, Paintings and Tiny Pottery From Art Power Couple Heather and Jon Almeda at First Friday
Their pop-up at the Hawai‘i State Art Museum on Dec. 6 will also feature a live demo of Jon Almeda creating mini ceramics.
Editor’s Note: Through our partnership with the Hawai‘i State Art Museum, HONOLULU Magazine publishes a monthly blog written by Lisa Shiroma, owner of the HiSAM Museum Gallery Shop.
Photos: Courtesy of Almeda Studio
You may not recognize the Almedas by name, but you’ve probably seen their work: Heather Almeda paints gorgeous landscapes and still lifes of tropical fruits and flowers, while her husband, Jon, specializes in creating miniature pots and has a massive following on Instagram. Together they share a studio assistant, a fluffy black and white cat named Friend, and have created a thriving business as full-time artists.
The pair’s story began nearly 30 years ago when they met in middle school in Washington. In high school, they each pursued creative media—her, photography, and him, ceramics. Romance blossomed after high school and they tied the knot 10 years later. Heather found success as a wedding photographer and, after they traveled the world for work and fell in love with the Islands, the couple decided to move from Tacoma, Washington, to Hawai‘i in 2017. Now she’s a self-taught artist who completes each painting in one sitting with bold, concise brushstrokes.
Jon, on the other hand, has stuck with pottery, continuing to teach himself after his instructor retired. In 1999, he came across a miniature art exhibition in Seattle and was inspired to create miniature pots. His work is even featured in the National Museum of Toys and Miniatures in Kansas City. He was also invited to participate in a traveling miniature art exhibition that took him from Philadelphia to London and on to Madrid with an easy-to-carry case filled with tiny pots. He started his Instagram account in May 2015 and began posting time-lapse videos of himself creating the miniature pots on a battery-powered wheel at scenic outdoor locations. He now has 284,000 followers.
In 2017, Jon was invited to participate in New York Fashion Week. He did a live miniature pot demo while models wore his tiny-pot earrings. The experience of being able to make jewelry out of ceramics was a breakthrough. Heather joined in and together they launched Almeda Jewelry in 2018, one year after their move to Hawai‘i. Each ceramic earring or pendant is handcrafted and hand painted with a final touch of 22-karat gold luster. The two admit that they get really excited when they see people wearing their jewelry. They consider it wearable art, a beautiful marriage of jewelry and fine art.
Photo on left: KAREN OBRIST
This First Friday, Dec. 6, Heather and Jon Almeda will be doing a special pop-up with their original paintings, ceramics and jewelry at the Hawai‘i State Art Museum. Come by from 6 to 9 p.m. Jon will also be doing a live demo of miniature pot throwing.
isa Shiroma is the owner of the HiSAM Museum Gallery Shop and runs it with partners Aly Ishikuni-Sasaki and Travis Sasaki from Mori by Art + Flea.
Lisa worked as gallery manager for Koa Art Gallery at KCC from 2014 to 2017.
In July 2017, Lisa, Travis and Aly renovated and reopened the Hawai‘i State Art Museum’s gift shop space as a new art gallery and gift shop “for Hawai‘i artists, by Hawai‘i artists.”