Friday, June 12, 2015

An extraordinary week of learning

What an amazing week!  For the last 5 days, I've been taking a class at the Bay Area Glass Institute with two phenomenal artists: Beau Tsai and Demetra Theophanous.  The focus of the class was in representing natural, realistic life forms in borosilicate glass.  I signed up for several reasons. First, this is the first time Beau has taught a group class in his thirty plus years of lampworking, so I knew this was a real opportunity.  Second, Beau and Demetra's work complement each other nicely, and I admire both of their work for their remarkable technique, use of color, and manipulation of texture and form.   While most of my exploration in borosilicate up to this point has been in smaller components (beads), I've long wanted to get over my fears of assembling larger, complex pieces out of those components.  The class more than met my wishes- both Beau and Demetra were so very generous with their time, technique, inspiration, and encouraging words.  I can't wait to get home, order more color, and take the first steps to implementing what I've learned this week and adapting it to my own work.  Aside from being inspiring and educational, I had a blast, too, much due to the hospitality of fellow artist Joy Munshower, who creates amazing bas-relief animal beads.  I was so grateful to have a class buddy! 
Here are a few highlights from the class: the fish, chickadee, and seahorse/ seaweed/ coral pieces I made in the class, Beau working on a Kingfisher bird sculpture, and our group for the week (Bob, Andrea, Beau, Demetra, Heather, Terry, me, Joy, and Nick).

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