AGTA MEMBER PROFILE:
John Dyer is happiest when he is surrounded by colored gemstones. He grew up traveling the globe with his missionary parents. John first discovered his interest in these fascinating “pebbles” as a boy when he discovered a book on gemstones and cutting. Home-schooled by his parents in Brazil, it was this locale that would change his course forever; here, people gave John his first loose gemstones: amethyst and aquamarine.
At a young age, John Dyer exhibited entrepreneurial savvy. He sold donuts as a street vendor in Brazil. Donuts were an unknown product, so John offered free samples. He created a market for them and began to build his business.
|At age 16,
Dyer and his family returned to the
United States. John Dyer and his father David decided to go into the
Dyer and his father went to Zambia to purchase emeralds and aquamarine rough.
Machine-gun fire did not dissuade the Dyers, they purchased the rough material and returned home. They gave the material to a faceter, but they were outraged by the price and poor quality. In fact, two of the three emeralds were cut so poorly, that the emeralds had to be recut later. John decided to take on the cutting himself with his first Ultra Tec faceting machine.
It was difficult in the beginning. John’s cutting skills improved with trial and error, and he read everything he could on gemstone faceting and buying rough. “I learned a lot of good lessons on what to buy and not to buy,” said Dyer. About five years later, the business finally broke even from the Zambia trip.
John’s father, David Dyer is the “big idea guy.” David has played an integral role in making machinery and improving aspects for their company, John Dyer & Company. As an inventor and machinist skills, David created their first concave-faceting machine in 1999. John quickly began experimenting with concave cutting. A few years later, he experimented with a combination of carving and faceting. John Dyer likes to experiment with new faceting techniques, and his father is always there to create new tools for him.
his first AGTA Cutting Edge Award in 2002
for a 37.16 ct Pakistani Peridot. Dyer took home 2nd place in the
According to John each competition has different parameters, some involving a particular theme or the use of a particular material.
“For the AGTA competition, I try to make the most awesome gem possible.”
And he must be doing something right, John has won 28 AGTA Cutting Edge Awards, an Idar-Oberstein Award and a Gemmy Award. In fact, the gem artist swept the Faceting Category in 2005 and 2007.
(Awards page here.)
A Gem in the Rough
The Dyers travel widely to Asia, Africa, South America and other locations to find good values and a wider diversity of rough gemstone materials. John Dyer wants to provide high quality at the lowest possible price.
Buying a good piece of rough is difficult. But a seasoned gem cutter like John Dyer knows exactly what to look for. “It is hard to judge color, so I imagine what it will look like and choose the orientation.” Since each piece is unique, Dyer envisions the best use for it and uses many different styles of cutting to create his vision. Color, shape, depth and so many “little things” come into play when cutting. "
great pride when he can juggle creativity and beauty in an economical
manner. “I love the challenge of trying to reconcile so many factors -
creating the most beautiful gem from the rough is always my goal.
Once the gemstone has been cut, Dyer engraves the JD trademark below the girdle. The logo stands as a mark of excellence in faceting and reinforces how special the gemstone truly is. The fact that it came from John Dyer’s workshop shows the customer that it is a piece of art worthy of his signature.
To learn more about John Dyer and his designs, visit his website at www.johndyergems.com
Images from left to right
37.16 ct. Peridot. 2nd Place. AGTA Cutting Edge Awards Winner 2002.
119.60 ct. Morganite. 2nd Place. AGTA Cutting Edge Awards Winner 2006.
27.23 ct. . Imperial Topaz. 1st Place. AGTA Cutting Edge Awards Winner 2007.
Pair of Ametrines (28.91) 1st Place. AGTA Cutting Edge Awards Winner 2008.
106.84 ct. Aquamarine. 3rd Place. AGTA Cutting Edge Awards Winner 2009.
44.74 ct. Citrine. Honorable Mention AGTA Cutting Edge Awards Winner 2010.
Like this? Share it with your friends!
From the American Gem Trade's Prism publication, Summer 2010 Issue. Article by Joshua Garcia. Reproduced with permission.