Tuesday, February 2

"Glass Hogs and Tool Junkies"

I came across Classy Art Glass after having googled Lampwork. Lampwork is a very hot art technique currently nd it seems everyone is doing it. However not everyone should be doing it. Again as I flipped through page after page of “lampwork” My eyes grew weary. Until I hit on Classy Art Glass, and as their name suggested, I found exactly that. I read the bio and was instantly captivated by this husband and wife duo. Fortunately for me they had recently completed an interview with Artifre. Here are experts from that interview and Jack talking about the loves of his life- his wife, and their glass work!


“I make lampwork glass beads so you may use your talent and creativity to design beautiful one-of-a kind jewelry anyone would be proud to wear!

Lampworking and jewelry making is all I do now. If I'm not on the torch making glass art, I'm in the studio creating sterling silver jewelry from the glass pieces that I lampworked. Besides that, the marketing of our work is very time consuming, so I guess you could say that it takes up almost all of my time in one way, shape, or form.

The one thing that defines me is probably my dedication to whatever I am trying to accomplish at the time. Whether it is at the torch, designing jewelry, or working on our websites. I'm sort of a perfectionist and take great pride in the final product. It seems that I'm always "tinkering" with one thing or another striving to make whatever it is the best that it can be.

My wife is the most important thing in my life, and has been for almost 20 years! If it wasn't for her, I might not even be here right now, much less, making glass and jewelry. From the later part of 2001 to Oct 2003 I began a difficult period in my life, having to endure five serious abdominal surgeries, resulting in the selling of my company and basically, my willingness to live. This situation forced Mary (my wife) to find another source of income to support our moderate lifestyle. She started working 7 days a week and did this for two years until it became so overwhelming that she had to find a better way. This brought her to something she had always wanted to do: make jewelry. She loves to wear it, and loves to buy it, so why not make it? In the early part of 2004, I began to have periods during the day when I was able to start doing things around the house. Mary would beg me to let her teach me how to make jewelry when I would have a good day. I finally said, “Okay, teach me.” This was the beginning of my “new life” as a fine jewelry and glass designer. After having a “creative drought” of over 3 years, Mary was the person who taught me to “unleash my creativity again.”

The question of where I learned the craft of lampworking is easy to answer. One of our good friends, out of the goodness of her heart, came over to our home one weekend a few years ago. She had loaded her car with glass, hoses, a torch, mandrels, bead release, tools, glasses, etc., everything one needs to start learning the art of lampworking! From that moment on, my wife and I were hooked! Thank you so very much Shawnette!!

If there was a new craft for me to learn, it would be designing and making pieces in Borosilicate Glass. I've always been a "soft glass" kind of guy, and have never tried using Boro glass for any of my projects. First, however, I want a lot more experience using soft glass before taking that next step to Boro work.

My wife and I would love to be able to support ourselves through ArtFire and our glass and jewelry! I believe that this website can do nothing but go up in popularity because of the ease of use and quality of product that it showcases. The more that people see this wonderful arena of true handmade creativity, the more they are going to want to purchase quality, handcrafted goods from this site.

As far as my inspiration goes, each piece of glass artwork is a reflection of my individual impressions of life, nature, emotion, and experiences. What makes our lampwork glass and jewelry different is our design process. Every item begins with an inspiration, based on color and form. It will never get old!

If I were to win a $1000 shopping spree I would BUY MORE GLASS of course, and more Sterling Silver findings for our jewelry making. In this craft, you can never have too much glass! Maybe a few more tools as well... After all, we ARE known as "Glass Hogs and Tool Junkies"! “

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