Wednesday, January 31, 2007
From the comment files
I got a couple of comments recently that struck me as needing a response, so I thought I'd have a go at it. Silver Thistle asked about starting beadmaking. I don't know if there is a right way or a wrong way to start beading, but I started by taking a class at my local college of art. The class I took included two full days on the torch, and there were only 6 of us, so there was lots of individual attention. I've posted the first beads I made at that session - the're off-centre, half burnt, and generally don't look like much, but they have a special place in my heart. Since then, I've had about 2 more years of practice, own several good reference text and have taken classes from whomever I can find. There are some amazing beadmakers out there, and there are special few who are good at sharing their amazing stuff with other people. I've been fortunate to learn from a couple people in the last category.
As far as expense, I don't even dare add up what I've spent so far. It would probably scare me, and shock everyone that reads this. It's not cheap, and there's always something else to buy. There are different types of glass, and not all of them can be used together, which means I must own about 5 different blacks, whites and clears in different types of glass because I can't use the different types in the same bead.
That being said, I do love it. I love turning this gooey, molten mass into something beautiful. I love seeing how shiny beads are. I love that each one is it's own little work of art.
(And to the Troll Bead question - I don't have the equipment right now to make silver cores - I'm looking at it, but it's not in the near future).
And Michelle wrote me a lovely comment about some glass people she ran into at a show. I honestly hope never to be someone who takes myself that seriously. I guess I've always thought of myself as an artisan rather than an artist - someone who enjoys the process and the craft rather than trying to express an idea through my art. I mostly do what makes me happy when I make things - if that means bright pink polka-dots then so be it.