Oh no. What did I do?

glass lampwork focal bead lori greenbergDo you ever get that feeling of ‘oh no. what did I just do?’ I’ve had that feeling a few times in my life when big decisions were made and there was no turning back. Even if I was happy with the decision it was the feeling of being forced to stay committed to something based on my own choices. I felt that way the day we signed the papers for our house. That was a big decision. I felt that way the morning I woke up after I got married. Hee hee. I felt that way when I took my first pregnancy test. No turning back now guys. So no use in worrying about whether it was a good or bad decision.

I also felt that way the first time I turned my torch on in my studio. I had previously been working in polymer clay and sold everything to fund the new glass lampwork studio. I was fully committed to glass in all of my beginner-ness. I was so excited. I had been renting torch time at Cave Creek Glassworks and decided I was ready to have a place where I didn’t have to pack up my supplies every time I worked.

The day came to light my torch and and aside from being terrified of it exploding because of the way I hooked up the gas and oxygen, I was giddy with anticipation. It lit just fine. The fire stayed where it was supposed to. Ventilation worked perfectly. Time to melt some glass. I made my first donut bead (I worked very tiny in those early days) and it didn’t work like I expected. I tried a few more and it wasn’t feeling as good as it was supposed to or as it had in the past. It was then that I had the distinct feeling that I had made a big mistake. I missed my polymer. What had I done?

I still get that feeling every once in a while. I have so much time and money invested into this thing they call glass lampwork. Some days (usually after a long day of production work) I wonder what would happen if I started to lose the desire to do it? What if someone moves my cheese? What would I do? What if one day the designs just stopped coming out of me and never returned? What would I do? I see people changing mediums and working into different areas like painting and precious metal clay and it scares me a little bit. It’s like breaking up with a boyfriend and having to start all over.

And then I tell myself to stop it and focus on what I’m doing. If that day were ever to come, I’d be ready for the change, right? Yikes.

2 responses to “Oh no. What did I do?

  1. Camilla Frager

    I will be taking my first glass class in June. I’m also a polymer clay artist and love to learn new techniques. Do you have any tips I should know prior to the class. I LOVE your beads, the one you show is beautiful and different from any that I have seen so far. Keep up the beautiful work.

  2. Hi Cami. Good luck! It was a long time ago but I think I remember that it’s totally different than polymer. While you can control the polymer, you are at the mercy of molten glass. One thing I do remember is that I kept wanting to grab it and make it do what I wanted. Obviously, don’t do that! Just keep an open mind and don’t try to fit it into your polymer skill set. Keep a beginners mind. One nice thing about glass is that there is no finishing. No sanding or buffing! When you’re done, you’re done!

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