putting it all together
Santa Fe has a relaxed, old world pace that evokes serenity, expansiveness and creativity from the soul. The home studio I work from reflects this, with 600 sq feet, 20' ceilings, great storage and an industrial loft vibe. There's a huge wall of windows that opens to the Pinon arroyo out back. Sweeping upward are the expansive views of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains with its ever-changing weather patterns and rainbows. Ravens, coyotes, bobcats and hummingbirds are frequent visitors. It's a lovely space to create art.
The Raw Materials
It all starts with sheets of stained glass and I try to keep a good selection of colors and textures on hand to choose from at all times.
Then there are the rustic wood bowls, which to me are so beautiful in their rustic natural state. They are each hand-carved with beautiful imperfections, each one a work of art in its own right!
Then there are all the tesserae, such as jewelry pieces, tiles, smalti, glass nuggets, charms and picassiette (aka hand-cut china). You can never have too much. Well, maybe I could cut back a little.
There are many steps involved. The raw wood bowls are first prepped at the workbench in the garage...all the messy process of sanding, oiling, painting, staining, waxing, drilling.
Once back in the studio, the overall design concept and color scheme are laid out. Then the work of cutting the glass by hand begins. All tesserae are securely adhered to the surface, with great attention to placement.
Then there's the finish work of grouting, cleaning, sealing and polishing.
Depending on complexity and size, it can can take up to 2 weeks to complete one masterpiece, which is why I like to have more than one in the works at a time.