Whew it’s been a ride. I lost my mother at the age of 14. Since I was the oldest of 2 girls I soon learned how to Cook, Clean, wash and all the other stuff to simply survive. My dad was pretty lost and didn’t know what to do with 2 girls Yikes! I had always been brought up with encouragement towards my creative side. I started sewing lessons when I was 10. I was in 4H and when most people had 2 or 3 projects I peaked one year with 27. I guess I’ve always been an over achiever. No one really ever said I couldn’t do something when it came to creativity so I just assumed I could. I had to learn to decorate the house or we would have been lost in the 60’s. As life went on I was a pretty much do-it-yourselfer.
My husband Rich and I have been married 29 years this June and I have 2 step children and 5 grand children the oldest is 16 and the youngest is 8.
What is your professional background?
I was in Corporate America for 30 years with the last 25 as a Corporate Credit Manager. When my company was sold I used a mediocre severance package to start my business. I had a B & M store for 2 years where I taught, sold supplies and offered studio time. I found I was spending so much time helping everyone else and on administrative duties that I didn’t have time to devote to my artistry. I gleefully gave up the store and moved back to my home studio.
What made you start working with glass and when?
I wanted to some cabinet doors about 10+ years ago and decided to take classes and make my own. My creative juices really flowed and within 6 months started fusing. I still do private commissions for Stained Glass but my true love is fusing. I just love glass. Lock me in a Crate & Barrel and I probably wouldn’t even notice that anyone is gone.
Does your glass inspration come from some place special in your life?
I get inspired from the strangest things and I never know when it’ll hit. I’ll see something and immediately contemplate on how it can be translated to glass. Sometimes the simplest things will become the springboard for my next creation.
How wouuld you describe glass?
Love, Hate, Frustrating, Exquisite, Exotic, Mesmerizing, Enticing and Passionate.
Is your studio all you want it to be?
I pretty much have most of the equipment including 5 kilns, 2 saws, grinders, sandblaster, polisher and torch equipment. I have most of the toys, not enough room and it’s definitely not as neat as I would like it.
Do you prefer music or quiet when you are working with glass?
I like some background noise so it’s usually TV. When I moved back into the basement studio my husband bought me cable since I couldn’t work in the dungeon all day and usually well into the wee hours of the night with regular station. Most of the time I have the learning channel or HGTV on and am looking at more creative things as if I don’t have enough to do.
If you have a really bad glass day, what comforts you?
Knowing that tomorrow I may look at that bad days results and find something wonderful. Sometimes a few hours and a new perspective can change the bad into my next gorgeous creation.
If you hav a really good glass day, do you celebrate?
I find that most days are good. I guess I celebrate by just relishing in the glory of making something beautiful.
The best part of working with glass?
There is always something new to try and explore. You can take the regular and turn it into spectacular in a short amount of time.
What is the worse part of working with glass?
I am a control freak to a certain extent and you really can’t control glass at least not the way I work with it most of the time. I want to manipulate and make it move my way and once you put it into the kiln you have to just hope that the kiln goods will be nice to you.
A few words of Wisdom!!!!!
Don’t get discouraged. As I look down the road I’ve traveled I remember the disasters and the uglies. I also remember that I learned from just about every experience. Don’t be afraid to experiment. Heed safety rules but don’t be afraid to try your own process and creativity. Remember everything that has been developed and improved in the glass community has happened because someone pushed the envelope. Look to the community for help and guidance I know you certainly find it in the CGGE group.