I am very interested in both culture as well as artistic design, and Melbourne is the best place to do both of these things.
My name is Satomi, I am from Nagasaki in Japan. In Japan I worked in a role as a personal assistant. I had learnt English, and so came to visit Australia in 2009 to take an English course to teach children.
I later returned to Australia as a working visitor, to take an English course for teaching adults. I decided to stay on in order to experience Australian culture. I was offered a job from an educational agent, and moved to Sydney for six years.
I really enjoyed the beach culture, but was happy to move to Melbourne in 2015.
It was when I was exploring Melbourne that I came across the SisterWorks stall at the market on the Esplanade in St Kilda. I met Lhakpa and she introduced me to SisterWorks. It was really helpful because I knew no one here.
I initially started volunteering at SisterWorks and helping out with the relationship management, as well as organising exhibitions.
Since then I have developed products to sell in the shop; accessories using materials imported from Japan and hand-dyed scarves with Japanese Indigo. I use Japanese inspired designs, and taught myself to produce them using online tutorials.
To give the story and character to my products I use my culture and background.
It is nice for me to show and introduce my culture people, as when I arrived here it was a very welcoming environment. I want to give back to this community that welcomed me.
In addition to my accessories business, I have started up an educational consultancy business on my own. I make study plans for students, such as those from Japan, that want to study English courses here in Australia.
I can use my experiences from coming to Australia to advise them on what they need to do to study here, as well as give them other information such as about Australian culture, which is hard to look up.
I am very interested in both culture as well as artistic design, and Melbourne is the best place to do both of these things. I can help others through my consultancy business, and designing accessories is for myself. In this way I can get a balance.
Coming here and meeting people with a welcoming attitude really helped me. I want to remember this and what everyone has done for me, so that I can connect with other people and support them.