Glass Pop Art Revisited.

So, here’s what I was yammerin’ about earlier.

Pop Art

More in my ‘Pop Art’ series. Yes, I’m just now getting back to that. I have a little time to play before I need to get started on a big order from my show and Tucson inventory.

I’m debating whether these will become part of my show inventory this year or if I’ll just make them into a killer show piece. I really like them and am enjoying making them. It’s about the only thing I’ve found that makes me enjoy working with bright colors.

The process behind them is interesting too. Well, to me anyway. You see, they start out as a hollow bead, which people strive for. But I wanted them to ‘pop’, thus ‘pop art.’ Did I mention the fact that I can’t bring myself to use the word ‘pop’ as it relates to color? You know… as in ‘those colors really pop’.

Anyway one of my first attempts (at the link above) was a nice, hefty, sturdy hollow. Have you ever tried popping molten glass without being able to blow into it? Not easy. I tried pokers, scissors, nippers, cool rods of glass, you name it. That’s why the popped part looks so mangled.

So, I devised another method whereby I planned where the hole would be. Not technically ‘pop’ art but the same effect. Today when I was working, almost miraculously, right when I was ready for it, a hole would appear and I just needed to expand it. Of course, I did get some hollow beads (that is, no pops) like the one shown in the front of this picture. And that’s cool too. But I noticed that the more I made, the better the hollows got. Which meant, the less frequency of popping. So I’m going to have to look into that further.

So, that’s what I’m up to, for now.

Obvious Me.

Stitched Tab Focal BeadI realized something about myself today that I already knew. Huh? You know how when you take those personality tests you end up commenting that “I already knew that about myself” but you just never really had it confirmed or in black and white in front of you? Well, it’s one of those things. If you haven’t noticed, I tend to do things by coming in the back door.

While I, or my bead style, might make it seem like I’m just that way, it’s really very contrived. Huh?

What I’m talking about is that I always choose what the other guy is either not focusing on or overlooking. I was listening to a radio interview today of a former basketball player who made the comment, “That was the year I fell in love with defense.” My first thought was, I LOVE defense. My second thought was, but no one else does. Everyone wants to be the three point shooter, the slam dunker. No one says, “I want to be the defensive….anything.”

While I’m not a big sports person, I was when I was younger. I started playing softball when I was in 4th grade and through my whole softball ‘career’ in high school I was always put at positions like third base, short stop and pitcher. On top of that, I was always the third or 4th batter. All I ever wanted to do was play the outfield or catch…and when it came to batting…ew. I wanted to run the bases and steal! I finally got to do that but not until college and later.

When it came to volleyball, I didn’t want to be the spiker or power server (I couldn’t do the former very well anyway), I wanted to be the setter or picking up spikes from the other team. Basketball? Well, I just didn’t like that at all but I did like passing and dribbling drills.

I realize that I’ve always liked working behind the scenes, as was previously obvious in my glass bead ‘career’. Always pumping someone else up. Until recently, anyway. Always the secretary, never the boss. It also shows up in my ‘style(s)’. When everyone…ok, not everyone, but most everyone that I saw…was focusing on surface design, I went to shapes. Why compete where the market is bloated? Shapes started to catch on and I really went away from surface design and started to focus on decorating the edges of beads. See the trend?

I wonder what will be my next back door. I have a few in mind…now I just need the time.

Drugs and Creativity.

I heard a reference on the radio to drugs helping someone to be more creative which reminded me of a group I was leading back in the day when I was a counselor. It was an out-patient court-mandated group for people with drug and alcohol charges. One of the largest addictions that we would see was crystal meth and a young man, probably about 24 years old was talking about how much more productive he could be because you didn’t need to sleep. He also said that it made him more creative.

Now, while I had my share of fun when I was in college and experimented maybe a little too much at times, the kinds of drugs there are today just weren’t around back then so I never tried, and probably wouldn’t have, meth. I can understand someone feeling more creative.

My question to that young man was, “So, how creative are you when you’re not high, and what does that say about you as an artist?” Basically, I mean to ask, if you feel more creative when you’re under the influence, that’s one thing, but can you still be a creative artist without that crutch? If not, why? And wouldn’t it be cool to work through what those blocks are without having to rely on a substance?

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