Terry Israelson started working at AMusinGlass as my Studio Assistant last July, mostly making frit balls, cutting glass, and doing finishing work on the pieces that had already been made. Now, keep in mind, that Terry had absolutely no glass experience at all, so he was learning everything as he went. Terry used to run his own wood shop, making custom furniture and cabinetry. Given his background in woodworking, which happens to share some finishing tools with glass working, and what sounded in his interview like some great experience in producing high quality work, I thought that he’d be able to apply his skills and background to the glass with a little coaching from me.
Turns out that I was right! It’s so nice when that happens… 🙂 In the past nine months that he’s been working here, he’s gone from a complete beginner with a position as my Studio Assistant, to creating his own work here in the studio, and a promotion to Studio Manager, effective the first of January, 2015. As part of his promotion, I tasked him with taking over the creation of the studio’s Intention Plate series. I’ll still be doing the energy work on those pieces and I do give him ideas for new plates I’d like him to produce.
However, aside from giving him the intentions that I wanted him to produce first and some of the glass colors I’ve used for those plates in the past, it was now his job to to be accountable for the process from cutting the glass and copper mesh, to lettering the intentions, to handling all of the firing and finishing, and I think he’s made a great start of it! Terry has even come up with some completely new designs of his own for the Intention Plates. The two photos attached to this post are of his first batches of Intention Plates.
At the top left are his new 5″ Intention Plates, including two brand new designs of his own. On the right, just above, are his new 9″ Intention Plates, including a complete makeover for the Happiness plate.
In his off hours, Terry had been creating his own work from glass scraps, starting last summer with some pendants. He gradually increased the scale and artistry of the pieces he was creating from the small pendants to sushi plates and bowls. Some of my favorites are the pieced or latticework glass art he’s experimented with. The two photos below on the right and left are examples of this exploration he’s been playing with. It’s been a real joy seeing him grow into such a huge asset to this studio and I’m very grateful indeed that he decided to come to work here.
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