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Over 100 Copies Sold!
I really want to thank the people who played a part in the creation of Life on the Rails. Most are mentioned and depicted throughout the book. I would not have got to this point in my life without you.
When I was teaching at Circle 6 Studios in Phoenix, I always thought back to the days when I started blowing glass. I thought about my learning process. I asked myself, "What is the easiest way to transfer the information in my head to my students?" The answer was clear; Drawing! But how much should I invest in it? Oh, just a page or two of hand outs each day. Nice. Perfect. Ok, but what about this part? In order to know this, you need to know that. What about that time I learned this here and that there. Alright, I'll write a book. Just a short one. I'll get it published in a few months. I'll scan in the pages, transfer the images into a Word document and type out the description. Perfect. Great. This is a lot of information. I've had suggestions to make two books. Let's do it. I'll split it down the middle. The first will be intermediate, and the second, advanced. Let's put that advanced copy off to the side for now.
I really want to make the images look better. Lets bring them up in Photoshop and I'll draw over them with my mouse pen. Wow these are looking good....now I have to do that for all Eight. Hundred. and Fifty of them. I redrew each image at the very least twice. That's right. I danced through about five different genres of music, and watched both of the Friends and That 70's Show series while editing. I had a lot of time to think. Those months turned into half a year, one year, over a year and a half! Over the course of this time period, I printed four hard copies to give to people to edit. Those copies traveled across the world. I worked on it like crazy. I couldn't stop. I didn't want to go to sleep at night because there was so much to write. I kept notes on my phone, on sticky notes, in Word documents, on the drafts. It slowly took form. It felt real.
Now, I'm working on posters, the Advanced book, and the second edition of the Intermediate book.
Educational posters are my newest undertaking that will display the most important aspects of the glassblowing process. My first "Jack Line" example will travel with me to the GAS conference in Norfolk to spark interest. I wish I had posters when I was learning how to blow glass. I absorb information the quickest and most efficient through images and explanations.
I've been away from a studio for a while but I continue to sketch constantly. The time away has led to a deeper reflection about my glass work. Instead of my skills progressing faster than my ideas, my ideas are now progressing faster than my skills. Funny how that happens. Time away is important for any artist. Take a step back. Distract yourself with another process or media and come back around full circle. For me, fresh eyes produce the most inspiration. Find a balance between contact time and reflection.
Enjoy your weekend!
I am speechless holding this book in my hand...all I can do is smile.
This book and the people in it mean so much to me.
Looking back on the past 19 months, I moved to three different places. Each of them I called home; twice in phoenix and back to Cal, City, IL. I travelled to Turkey, filmed Life on the Rails: The Video in North Carolina, visited Mt. Mitchell: the highest peak in mainland eastern North America, became an uncle, and snowboarded the Rockies. All inspired the creation of this book in some way. Words of encouragement from so many people made it all possible.
For the remainder of the year, I will slowly piece together an international book tour in the US, Canada, and Europe. In 2018, I am honored with a residency in Australia. After that, I’ll find a new home to write the Advanced Book!! I’m not sure where it’ll be yet, but I’m excited about it.
The first 100 book are almost all sold! Future orders may be delayed an extra few weeks until the next shipment comes in. All copies ordered through me will be signed unless otherwise noted.
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Time to start shipping books!!!!!
Enjoy the weekend! I know I will.
I was raised in Calumet City, IL. My professional glassblowing career led me to Phoenix, AZ and the coast of Carlsbad, CA. where I was given the opportunity to teach glassblowing classes. Notes and chalk drawings of different techniques for the students resulted in my current book project.