For pricing and information about transportation and lodging see Registration/Transportation
April 18–22 (arrive 17, depart 23), 2017
This is the Big One, and you’ll learn everything! In this five-day workshop we’ll focus on sculptural techniques, inspiration, design improvisation, cartooning, creating components to move your pieces into three dimensions and multi-media. And we’ll do it making fish, animals, goblins, dragons, and the imaginary creatures of your choice.
The first year I made beads, I copied every handmade glass bead I could get my mitts on, trying to learn the techniques. I had a pile of the most awful Pati Walton, Kristina Logan, Tom Holland, and Nancy Pilgrim knockoffs... they’d have laughed themselves silly if they’d seen ‘em, just before they killed me. I didn’t want to rip off other people’s work, and I was going nuts trying to figure out how to develop a personal style.
Then I did my once-every-ten-years household cleanup and found all the old portfolios, cartoons, and doodles in back of the closet, shrieked BINGO!, and raced down to the torch and made my first sculptural bead, from a drawing I'd done when I was about five. It was a little gold cat, a compound bead with a separate head and body, white cheeks with three dots for whiskers, and I put it together with a rhinestone rondelle collar. I still have it, it’s really awful.
"Working with glass and flame is so much fun, it should be illegal. I like playing with primary colors and sculptural forms; my favorite beads are the bright silly ones that tell a story and make people laugh. The process of melting and forming the glass is so calming and meditative, and the gratification is so instant, that the finished piece is just an added bonus."
We’ll begin with basic sculptural techniques and create a bunch of interesting critters. You’ll learn to visualize, design, diagram, and create sculptural beads from the inside out, working from largest to smallest detail. And you’ll learn how to morph the Dreaded Bead Gone Bad into a new and better design—no more plunges into the Waters of Death!
"Sharon is a wonderful instructor! If you've ever wanted to learn sculptural glass this is the class for you no matter what your style. The basics of construction and design are taught in simple step by step increments with lots of drawings for structural understanding, not to mention design concepts and loads of inspiration. HA! And her class is SO much fun! "
We’ll work on Imagination, Improvisation, and Creativity, play games and exercises that will help you apply old techniques in new and creative ways, learn to design from toys and explore where to find inspiration—all of this to help you develop your own design ideas and creative voice.
We’ll explore how to make expressions and make faces with both beads and cabochons. We’ll make components for a multi-media creature with a cabochon face, and play with epoxy clay to put it together. This class is my first trial run of the Glass & Multi-Media pendant creatures and you’ll be my willing victims, yay!
You’ll practice new techniques while making an assortment of strange creatures! You’ll learn to control the flame while making dessert! You’ll experience the amazing Beatles Bead Toss, with fun and learning guaranteed!
You’ll leave the class energized, full of chocolate and full of creativity! You’ll be comfortable doing improvisations in the flame, and find inspiration everywhere! And we’ll all have a heck of a good time at Marley’s place, with optional Giant Poodle Toe Massage!
Is this class too advanced for you? Probably not! If you’re comfortable controlling hot glass, can make basic bead shapes (cylinder, bi-cone, round, etc.) in a reasonable amount of time, have a good grasp of the basic decorative techniques and get regular practice, you shouldn’t have any trouble keeping up in this class. This class is not recommended for new beginners.