Those of you who have been following our Blog might remember the one entitled “Whoa Nellie”. Well, in that blog I talked about how our glass art life became frantic and totally out of kilter with constant activity, and that we needed to slow things down to achieve some balance in our lives. We did do that…for a while that is. I guess it is a cyclic phenomenon because here we are again in “crazy mode”. February is a very…VERY… busy month for us.

It started off with us being in Lahaina under the Banyan Tree Saturday and Sunday, February 2nd and 3rd. We leave the house at 6:30 a.m. to get to Lahaina by 7:30 so we can be set up by 9:00. We start tearing down at 4:30 and get on the road by 6:00 p.m.… long, exhausting days! Then, that Monday (February 4th)…and every Monday for the next year (since we committed for a year)… we started presenting our glass at the Wailea Marriot Resort. We are part of a group of artists that have been accepted to show and sell their work at the resort. Six of us show on Mondays, including Scott Mead (a photographer), Coleen d’Avignon (a woven bead jewelry maker), Ken Loyd (a well known Maui oil painter), Jennifer Throne (a gourd artist ), and Brenda Kennerly (a watercolorist). It’s a bit easier than the Banyan. The resort is only 5 minutes from our house. We start set up at 7:00 a.m. to be ready by 8:00, and teardown starting 2:00. On top of those two gigs, we also have Maui Open Studios on the 23rd and 24th. On those days, people come to our house. I give them a tour of our studio and a brief tutorial on how we do the various glass fusion processes we use. Then they go into our house where we have on display (and for sale) our glass art as well as acrylic and watercolor paintings that we’ve done. Sandy and a friend handle that part.

All in all, that’s eight days of “shows” this month. At this point, we are half way through it…and surviving…more or less. To prepare for this month, we’ve been working on glass every day since mid January. We have created a variety of pieces ranging from small items like pendants, 6 inch bowls and candle holders, to large 16 inch bowls and baskets. For the larger bowls (12 to 16 inches), we have used the more complex techniques (pattern bars, drop pots, and the new bubble motif). Sandy has really perfected the bubble motif technique. She worked out the kinks in the process and is able to consistently achieve excellent results. We have also worked on moderate pieces like cheese plates and clocks. For these smaller items we primarily use the mosaic technique for our designs.

In the attached photos, we are showing a 16 inch bubble bowl, a drop pot in process and a pattern bar before and after fuse firing. The drop pot was our first after the near disaster of almost “killing the kiln”. The drop pot photo was taken after the molten glass cooled down. Clearly we didn’t run the kiln long enough to get all the glass out of the ceramic pot. The pot is suspended in mid air by the solidified columns of glass that were dripping from the pot…hence the terminology “Drop Pot”. It’s an interesting photo because it shows how the puddle of glass is created below the pot. Also, we really like the colors of the resulting glass…very sea-like. It made a spectacular bowl.

The pattern bar design was just done yesterday. It came out quite nicely as well. We will be slumping it into a bowl shape in the next day or two so that we have it at our “Maui Open Studio”.

So, yes, we are working at a feverish pace…slightly insane…and somewhat out of control. Just like the impetus last July that drove us off the deep end and loss of “balance”….we are doing it all over again. However, we are aware and I expect that in a few weeks when I write the next blog, I’ll be able to announce that we are sailing calmer waters and have regained an evenly balanced keel!