The Prompt Sally gave us for week 4 of focus on life 52 photos was "create art"
in Sally's own words-
This week let's CREATE ART! There is no wrong way to be creative! Immerse your self in what you already love to make or take this prompt as the little push to try something completely new! Then show us!
I decided to go with something completely new. Thanks for the push Sally!
Last Saturday I headed out for St.Pete to check another thing off my bucket list.
Anyone who knows me is well aware of the love affair I have with glass, especially stained glass.
I have in my studio most of the tools required to create stained glass and had fully intended to muddle through on my own to learn the craft, something I have wanted to learn for a VERY long time now, but I am so much better with a little show and tell, so I signed up for a beginner's series of classes at
Pictured here L-R are the owners, Bradley and Eloyne Erickson,
along with Christi and Dawn, all of whom are glass and jewelry artists and instructors in the studio. Bradley also operates the fine art graphics end of the business in the adjoining studio space. ( another artist, Ragon is missing from the photo but was a great help getting me settled in and picking out my glass in the morning)
My hat is off to all of you for creating such a welcoming atmosphere so conducive to learning and for having the patience to share your wealth of knowledge and skills to make my experience in the class a success.
The studio itself is huge and filled with the most amazing natural light, large worktables at the perfect working height for glass, fantastic music streaming from Pandora and all the supplies and beautiful glass neatly organized around the room, not to mention all the finished works of art hanging in the front windows for inspiration.
The classes are set up in convenient 2 hour sessions with an hour break in between and so I opted to take all 3 sessions offered on Saturday to save travel time and get as much done as I could since I was short on time.
Each session brought with it a new group of participants at all different stages of working, some beginners like me in each session and others coming in for studio time to work on individual projects of varying degrees, both in stained and fused glass.
One of my tablemates was an ambitious young man working on only his second project of which he chose to recreate his family's crest in glass as a gift for his Father.
I shared with him one of my favorite sayings
"Anything worth doing is worth overdoing"
I on the other hand was very grateful once I got started to be working on a suncatcher of manageable size and design for a beginner. Step by step, each of the instructors guided me and taught me the skills I would need to go on from here and I feel very confident in being able to take what I learned and tackle a more ambitious project myself now too.
Clockwise from top left- all the pieces of glass, cut and fit to the pattern layout, copper taped, initial tacking and soldering to stabilize the piece on both sides and then the final soldering on each side and framed in zinc.
Bradley was kind enough to send me a copy of the picture he took of me (which I altered) with my completed piece which he had posted on their facebook page here.
I couldn't possibly go to St Pete and not stop in and see my dear friend Barbara, her studio and shop, Painting With Fire, is right across the street from Grand Central Stained Glass and is actually how I originally found it. I was visiting Barbara and Jim last year this time when they were busy with all the renovations and getting ready to open her studio.
As you can tell,I snuck in during my break and surprised her as she was luring some more interested students to the dark side! I had really hoped to visit with her longer but her schedule was pretty full so I'll just have to take another trip out there, go ahead, twist my arm!
The street where all of this is located is Central Avenue and it is an historic district full of wonderful studios and shops and eateries and I would love to wander along when I have more time and see more of the area.
I did manage to squeeze in a delicious lunch at Nitally's Thai Mex Cuisine, right down the street from the studio, some Pad Thai with shrimp and iced tea which arrived in a quart canning jar. I can't even remember a time when I went to a restaurant alone so that is another new thing for me but it was nice. The restaurant was filled with interesting things to look at and was decorated very bright and cheerfully. I would enjoy coming back here as well, maybe with some friends next time.
Now hop on over to the Studio Sublime and see what everyone else created this week!