I have been making pieces in copper foil stained glass for the last six years. It all started when I enrolled in an adult education course at my local college. Deciding that I wanted one evening a week to do something completely different and creative, the stained glass course jumped out of the page of the brochure at me.
After only three evenings of learning, I was totally hooked, counting down the days until the next Wednesday! Not only was it exciting to be learning such a traditional craft, but I got to meet such a wonderful group of people in my class, all from very different walks of life. Some aspects were highly frustrating, cutting glass was the first hurdle to overcome. I practised in between lessons and started to get the hang of it after quite a few glass cuts! Next, soldering would prove to be a real challenge. When melted, it seemed to have its own mind and didn’t want to flow where you were expecting it to. It took all of us many weeks to learn the various stages of producing what seems now, a very small and untidy first piece of work. But the pride in having made something from start to finish was immense.
By this time, it was November and Christmas was approaching fast. I had decided to put my new found craft to use and make a few small Christmas decorations as presents for family. Friends at work were intrigued by my new hobby, and as soon as I had finished making the decorations, I took them in to work so they could see what I had spent all my free time obsessing over! On the first day I took them in, I had twelve requests to make some more! I was elated that people liked my work so much, they were willing to pay me for it. I was also slightly concerned that it was only a couple of weeks until we finished for Christmas! But I accepted the challenge and decided I had to aim to make one decoration per evening. The intense practise meant my glass cutting and soldering skills improved rapidly. All the orders were completed just in time and I had earned money from doing something I absolutely loved. The money was re- invested in to buying more sheets of glass!
So, that was the start of my little glass business. I still went to the evening classes for another year, mostly to see all my new found friends and have an evening out. But where the others would only work on their glass project for that evening, I would be working on something new nearly every week. I just had so many ideas to make into glass, there was never enough time!
More orders had followed from friends of friends keeping me busy after work. Spring was approaching, and I decided to focus on how I could use glass in the garden. My love of nature inspired me to start making garden stakes with birds, butterflies and dragonflies on them. The pattern I had designed for the dragonfly was so totally unique, it proved very popular and so I decided to name my business ‘Dragonfly Glass Art’.
I did my first show in the August of that year, only a local two day Summer Fair, not expecting that much . The weekend was sunny and the glass sparkled in the light. I was busy on both days and had received so many positive comments from people, I was blown away. From that day on I was inspired to carry on creating and showing my work. My love of nature, animals and birds can be seen in a lot of my pieces. The huge array of glass colours and types is also a great inspiration, and one of my favourite parts of producing a new piece is choosing which glass to use.
Many craft shows have followed since then, and exhibiting in galleries. This website is the final stage to launching Dragonfly Glass Art to the wider world. I hope you enjoy looking at my portfolio pages to see what I have been creating over the last few years and keep up with any new work I have on the go.