I first became fascinated by hand blown and lampwork glass art in 1995. I was living in Portland, Oregon at the time and the lampwork glass scene was still very young. I started seeing a few artists at the Portland Saturday Market making lampwork glass beads and other hand blown glass items. The medium intrigued me like no other art form ever had before and I started thinking about learning how to do it myself. After all, I’m not the first person in my family to make a livelihood from hot glass. My grandfather spent his life working as a foreman at Corning Glass Works in Corning, New York where borosilicate glass was invented.
I asked around but couldn’t find anyone to show me how to work with borosilicate glass. Then in 1996 on a trip to Asheville, North Carolina a lampwork bead artist showed me how to make a few soft glass beads on her torch. I was hooked! Not long after that, during a visit to Aukland, one of New Zealand’s foremost glass artists Peter Viesnik spent an afternoon teaching me to make glass beads in his studio. I had a growing feeling that it wouldn’t be long until I would really start learning how to lampwork but wasn’t sure how it would happen.
When I returned to Portland, Oregon from New Zealand, I discovered that one of my best friends, Daniel Fierro, had just learned how to blow glass a few months earlier. He showed me the basics he had learned and we shared a studio for a few months as we experimented and learned from each other. After 6 months of lampworking, I moved to Maui and it was on that beautiful island that my individual style as a lampwork artist was born. Surrounded by warm breezes, pleasant evening rains, daily ocean swims and fresh fruit from the trees in my garden, my glass art blossomed along with everything around me.
I currently make my home in the city of Bend, Oregon where I enjoy all the opportunities this area provides to enjoy both nature and art. When I’m not creating lampwork glass art I enjoy hiking, backpacking, camping, kayaking, skiing and playing guitar.