My attraction to bright shiny things led me to a career as a gemologist. I spent many years chasing gemstones in exotic places. Glass has an appeal to me because of its many gem-like qualities—brilliant colors, textures, and optical possibilities.
Glass has infinite possibilities for creating functional glassware and decorative objects. I use fusible glass which comes in large sheets. Colored glass is cut into pieces forming the design. These pieces are then unified by placing a clear colorless piece of glass over the colored glass pieces. Additional glass trim pieces may be added on top of the colorless layer. Glue is used to hold the pieces together. When I am satisfied with the design, the pieces are placed in an electric kiln and fired to 1460 degrees F. At this point the pieces of glass melt together and a flat solid piece is the product. If the piece is to be shaped, it is put on a mold and fired to 1260 degrees F. At this temperature the glass softens and slumps into the form of the mold. Inspiration for glass designs comes from many places. I do my best creative thinking hiking and walking around Flagstaff which provides a rich landscape of color and texture. My cats provide perfect models for my “cat pieces.” Floral pieces are abstractions from nature. Some of my geometric pieces suggest the beautiful local mountain landscape.
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