Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Silvered Shards Demo

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

In the Clear, the next step for marbles!

I am currently running a kickstarter project to fund a new line of marbles utilizing clear glass. As almost every soft glass lampworker will tell you, working clear glass at the torch tends to lead to less than optimal optics. This project will fund a new crucible style kiln for batch melting perfect clear to use in encasing marbles. I hope this will lead to new styles and better work. Just follow the link below to see the project on Kickstarter and please consider supporting.

Kickstarter Campaign

Friday, January 13, 2012

Unexplored Territory

Unexplored territory

For years now I have prided myself as the guy who made surface worked marbles. I felt there was honor in avoiding the lure of clear, vortexes, fuming, air trapping, and a whole host of traditional marble making techniques.  This was coming from a guy who made a living selling paperweights with large amounts of clear and swirls of color for the first ten years of my life as a glass artist.
( honestly, a little part of it was dreading the search for the perfect clear, peeling scum, avoiding air trapping, the large amounts of cussing after an hour of work when you see the clear is flawed, etc.)
But…..  When the first of the year rolled around, I found myself feeling the urge to do some experimenting. So I bit the bullet and ordered some large diameter, high quality clear from Double Helix. I ended up having so many ideas and burning through three pounds of clear before I knew it. Now I find myself with two rods left,(  6 pounds more is one the way) and wondering how not to waste them today.

I am finding I have way more surface area to cram full of visual stimulation, and I feel I am retaining my “style”., something I was worried about when I made the clear plunge. I am still going to make purely surface worked marbles, they are just way too fun to push aside, but… I feel a new world of designs has opened up.

There is still a lot of learning to do, clear is really a pain in the behind. The process of getting the clearest window can be time consuming and tedious. There have been more failures lately than I am used to having. I just remind myself that it is supposed to be about quality, not quantity and slowly gather that gather of transparent goodness.

I think a small crucible furnace may be in my future,  we will see if I can make the expense worth the extra power and time to justify my little pot of molten dreams.

Let me know what you think of the new work, and thanks for taking the time to look!!
All of the new stuff can be found at Etsy   ,and a short video showing this process can be found on YouTube

Sunday, October 09, 2011

What is in it for me??

What is in Teaching for me?        

I love traveling around to teach. I have gotten to see a lot of the country, and even a quick stint to Japan to give a lecture. I get paid fairly well, but more importantly, I get out of the studio and learn a lot myself.

I mainly try to teach patterns and good shaping methods. All the skill in the world creating the most complex pattern ever made will be no good unless it is laid on a well formed bead. Also, after an artist gets the great form and the great pattern; you need the heat control to not screw it all up. So I teach best through teaching the beads and designs I know best. I do not worry about keeping secrets and someone copying my latest and greatest thing. It was actually through needing to come up with new lessons that I have grown as an artist. Many of my series were developed to teach some aspect of heat control or pattern work, and I adopted the lessons into my own stable of series to create. And if you teach properly, then you leave room for everyone to bring their own style to the lesson, even if it through something as simple as color selection.

 That is the moment when I start to learn. Seeing what each new student brings to a lesson, will lead me off on new ideas. It becomes an atmosphere where everyone can see what works and what does not, and thing take it back to their own studios.
Teaching a particular style of bead also makes you really think about why you do it the way you do. You have to have an intelligent answer when someone asks “why do you do it that way?”  It never fails that I have to come up with an answer to an unexpected question every single time. That kind of forced self-examination is always good, even if the answer you give is” just because it’s easier”.

Even the simple act of meeting new and interesting adults is worth the trip. Many weeks I will realize that I have only spoken to my kids and quick hello to others on the walk to school for a whole week or more. I am always nosey and ask about the students’ lives outside of the studio. I have met some truly great people over the years, some who have an impact on my life even when we just catch up at the gathering once a year. The family of artists that teaches and takes bead classes is a truly wonderful quirk of our particular art form. I love seeing a bead artist who took one little thing I taught them and grew it into their own unique style and sensibility. 

I have actually taken quite a step back from teaching, but a recent trip to Third Degree in St. Louis reminded me of a lot of the benefits that I get out of the trips. I look forward to teaching more in the future, even if it is on the new limited scale. I am currently trying to balance the act of sitting in the studio creating, with the sporadic excitement of travel and teaching. 

Thursday, October 06, 2011

How Steve Jobs helped me personally

How did Steve Jobs help me personally? 

In watching the news coverage last night of Steve Jobs passing, I realized just what an important role both he and his generation of entrepreneurs have played in both my life and my art. I am by no means an Apple fan boy. I was raised to be a windows user, and have successfully resisted the urge to buy the more expensive machines that Apple offers; however the influence is everywhere, and a huge part of the world we live in today.

However, the vision of a tech enabled world has changed the way that small scale businesses and artists can sell their work.  I was college trained to be a working artist/crafts person before the last great digital revolution. My senior seminar class was all about producing a slide portfolio, approaching galleries and the traditional model for making and selling art. The time from the creation of the object and the actual sale of the object could easily be 6 months or more. If you went down the craft show route, you would spend months making inventory, travel halfway across the country, set up a tent and hope for good weather and a few customers. If you went the gallery route, you would spend that time making objects, writing resumes and cover letters, hiring a professional photographer to make a portfolio, and hope that you could get 10 stores to agree that your work was worth selling. You would then ship off the work, and it would sit in a store, hoping the right person would walk through the door one day. 

Now I can make a marble or bead in the morning, photograph it in the afternoon, edit the photographs and list an auction or sales page at an online venue, post about the new item on any number of forums and online communities, finally to wake up the next day and find that the item has sold within 24 hours of its creation. In addition some of those items are seen by thousands of viewers online. I happen to think that for me, this is a much better business model.
I can hear us old timers already saying “ well, back in my day,………….”.

Now I know that all of this change is not only Steve Jobs doing, but he played a huge part in pushing the culture that made this possible. Now a hobbyist that makes a few beads a week can look as legitimate as a “pro” that slaves away 8 hours a day on the torch, all you need is a slick website and the skills to make good work. I personally think that this just pushes all of us to be better. Innovation and excellence are being pushed further every day in the arts and crafts, due to the rapid ability to share ideas, post photos and do research online. When I want to see a collection of images to refine an idea, I just pull up Google’s image search. My community of peers is no longer the local crafts guild, but an international group of like minded people on Facebook and glass forums.

It is a great time to be a maker of objects. It is ironic that the cold digital world has allowed those who choose to pursue these ancient and labor intensive craft forms to make a better living. It has allowed me to stay at home with my kids, still sell my art, and never have to stand in the rain at a craft show and hope it lets up enough to allow a customer to buy something, just so I can earn the gas money to get back home. Now I just sit at a keyboard, while dinner is simmering on the stove, the kids are doing their homework in the next room, and I reach out and show thousands of people what I have for sale with the push of a few keystrokes.

The home computer also allowed me to publish 5 books and an instructional DVD. I was able to layout and print the books without the backing of a publisher. All it took was the seed money and the help of a very talented friend ( thanks Julie!) who did the layout and design.  The first book sold 3,000 copies in less than year, only because of the internet.  Even this has changed over the last ten years, my next book will only be digital, no printing costs necessary.
Not like back in my day when you had to walk your item to market uphill 10 miles both ways in a snow storm to do a show that no one came to see.

A bead inspired by fabrics found on Google's image search
 Thank you to Steve Jobs and the visionaries that brought us the internet and the applications to use it.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Sometimes Rambling Pursuit of Pattern

The creative process: 

While recently cruising a marble collector’s website, I was intrigued by a comment from one of the collectors.

Here is a partial quote from it.
“Problem with Brad is you never know when he is going to crank out a new batch of marbles and of what design they will be. He doesn't seem to revisit designs very often, so usually with Brad if you snooze... you lose. ………………… Also, Brad seems to utilize many different colors, patterns and techniques that seem to appeal to different groups of buyers at different times depending on his creative mood. So he may go for months working on a style that does not appeal to me, then he goes through another spell for a few months where almost everything he makes appeals to me.”

For some reason this comment lodged in my brain.  It was interesting to hear an opinion about my body of work from the outside looking in.  From the inside looking out, all the work is the same. It is all about dots, lines and the pursuit of patterns.  It does not matter if it is a skull, a bird, or wavy lines, it is still all about the pursuit of the design. I am on the quest for patterns and interesting new ways of making them. For me, the need to create pattern is a primal element, one that is found in every culture, from every time period. You can find repeated patterns on cave walls and on the finest Ming vase. It can be found in a native Turkish rug and Maori tattoos. 

In looking back over my photos from the last few years, I can see what he is talking about. For some artists, their careers are a linear progression from one idea to the next, constantly using the last item to make the next on better, Much like a vine slowing creeping forward. I view my creative process as a tree with many braches. The trunk is all about dots and lines. Each branch is a direction in which to study dots and lines. They may at first seem very different, but they all have that same “trunk” of the tree in common. I guess I return to the trunk often and start a new branch, but that seed idea of pattern design and repetition are always there.

 I just thought the view from outside looking in was interesting and worth pondering for a few minutes.  

Both the beads below are the same shape,  and the underlying theme is pattern, just two roads taken to explore that direction.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Long overdue....... 2011's first post

A lot of action has been going on around the studio. Starting in December, I set out a new business plan. Mainly it is to be in the studio on certain days, every week, and create a thriving Etsy store.

It seems to be working, I now spend Monday through Wednesday in the studio, Thursday I teach at the Visual Arts Center in Richmond Va., and Fridays can be a studio or a computer day. As of right now there are about 140 items in the Etsy store ( ). Items are moving on a regular basis, keeping me on my toes.

The studio time has paid off. I have been able to begin exploring some new bead and marble ideas. I feel that the work so far this year is some of my best ever.

This new schedule does have some drawbacks. I am actually a little sore form all the bench time. My yoga mat is getting used a lot, as I stretch away the day’s kinks every night. I can highly recommend a little stretching to all my fellow lampworkers; we are not getting any younger. The other drawback is less travelling and teaching. I do miss the interaction I get when I go to another city for a few days and work with other artists. I always learn something, no matter what the skill level of the class is. I decided to spend this year working on my own art, something had to give, and it was travelling. Hopefully when I get back to teaching, I will have a whole new bag of tricks to share.

Here are a few marbles from the last week, these all feature the new matching stands. I plan to have a lot of fun with the stands. The ideas keep flowing in.

Thanks everybody, take a look at the Etsy store and let me know what you think of the new work.


Thursday, July 01, 2010

An interesting question

I got this question on one of the message boards I frequent and thought the question and answer would fit in nicely on the blog.

"Would you talk a bit about what you do to work out a design or how you approach laying your design down on a bead? It's clear from your website you are very methodical and thorough. It would be so neat to hear some of your approach and thinking process on work."

It really is kind of hard to explain. Over the years I have developed a "vocabulary" of design elements through trial and error. Through masking I can make certain parts of a design. When I sit down to make a bead now, it is just a matter of recombining the shapes into a well balanced pattern.

When I sit down, I have a rough idea of which series I am going to make, I can kind of doodle with elements I already know how to create and keep building upon these to make a cohesive pattern. The trick is to know when to stop. If you think of every bead as a mini sculpture then the glass has to stand on its own as a finished work. I think of color and form, exactly as if I were making a larger glass vase or paperweight.

That is one reason the bead as a form is so appealing. In a given day, I can run through ten variations on a theme and really flesh out what works and what can be discarded from my "vocabulary".

I am not as methodical as you might think, but other times I know I can get deeper than I need to. My big thing when I teach is to design with intention. Basically, learn to work with your medium so that no matter what kind of design you work with you know what to expect, from your material.

If you take Micheal Barley for example, his beads look very random and organic. But after studying his body of work, you can see logic in the way he makes choices about design. You can find seemingly random dots that perfectly balance a swirl of color on the other side of the bead.

I hope this helps, I think I rambled a little bit. The biggest advice I can make is to make lots of beads. Study each one as you are making it, and remove the things that don't work, and add the things that do to the next bead.

Feel free to ask about any thing that is not clear, it really is a hard thing to put into words. But I think it is important for everyone to ask this very question of their own work.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Special Gathering class

I have a special class coming soon , On Tuesday and Wednesday before the gathering I will be teaching at :


34 Elton street
Rochester, NY 14607 USA

Marylin is breaking down my usual class and allowing people to take one day or two. I am a big fan of taking both days to get the most out of the class, but you have the option to take either day. I have broken down the lessons to give you an idea of what I will be teaching.

Beyond the Basic Bead

Day one:

Masking and good dots techniques

Long beads with masking and a solution for perfect ends

Simulating wood grain with cane and learning to work with metal punties.

Day Two:

Two different styles of disk bead

Using metal punties to create off mandrel pendants, this opens up a world of new possibilities for all levels of bead maker.

All lessons focus on heat control and good techniques, I try and talk about how and why I do the things I do. We also talk about designing with intention, no matter what style of bead you like to make. As always I try and run a fun energetic class. No matter what your current style is, I guarantee you will be able to apply the skills to your own work.

So come on and join us, I promise great music, lots of learning and some fun. Contact Marilyn for more info and to register.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Getting ready for the Bead and Button show

I have been busy, busy , busy making new work for the bead and button show. My goal was to create almost all new work for the booth. Over the last month I have finished over 100 pieces for the show.

I am also redesigning a lot of thew work from the ground up. Same techniques and care, but some newer shapes and richer color palletes.Below is a marble from about a year ago. I love this marbles, but currently I am working in more analogous colors and a more varied color scheme.

Here are some of the beads from the last month,

As you can see, a lot more color, some new shapes , and a greater attention to color as a whole. Its not just about the pattern any more. I love the new work. Come by booth 411 at the B&B show and see it in person.

Brad Pearson

Friday, October 16, 2009

Balancing act

One thing that all artists face is the tight rope of life. Many of us in the world of lampwork do not face the same restrictions of regular folks. There is no one to scowl at me if I am not at work, there is no time card to punch, and there are no co workers to hold us accountable. We also get few of the benefits of a "real" job, such as knowing how big that check will be when pay day rolls around.

As many of my readers already know, I am a house husband. Not only do I try and work a full week in the studio, I also do the cooking, school drop off and pickup, and the house maintenance. I am the first to admit that I am about the worst house cleaner out there, but my family is well fed, no kids are left outside the school, and more importantly, my kids are still in one piece( so I must be doing something right).

Here are a few of the tasks that I am responsible for in any given week.

errands and school stuff
Making art
Selling art
Promoting art
Teaching art
photographing art
ebay sales
etsy sales (or lack there of)
grocery shopping
emails, taxes , scheduling classes and various other assorted computer time activities.

Now I am sure I am forgetting something is this list ( like something fun ), but you can see my problem. Which ones are priority, and how do I decide. First one to go, to my wife's dismay, is always cleaning. I can live while a few socks hang out on the floor, I can not live with out food.

I try and schedule three days in the studio, one to teach at the Visual arts Center, and one to work in the office. Here is the problem: Life gets in the way.

Let me give you and example. Two weeks ago my son got a very minor fracture in his foot. This started a huge avalanche that impacted two weeks of careful planning.

First I had to cancel class to take him to the ortho doctor. Which led into the next week when I lost a day in the studio to make up that class. Which led to two days out of the studio. I can not even remember all the ways in which the universe conspired against me, but I have not set foot in the studio in a week and a half. All of my scheduling and good intentions, gone out of the window. Next week we will try again.

Now I know a lot of my beadmaking buddies out there are in a similar situation. So come on and give me your solutions.

I do gripe a lot, but I would not trade anything for my ability to be there when the family needs me. The glass can wait, even if it gets a little impatient every now and then.

And here is the pay off, one of the new marbles from before the broken foot issue.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Marylin Monroe With A Cold Sore

( or the importance of form)

Over the years I have had the pleasure of jurying all three Bead Review Books and I can now tell you that form is the single most important factors in your beads. A lot of us are guilty of thinking of form last. The first thing we think of when we sit down is our new secret technique, or the latest batch of silver color to come into our hands.

None of this matters if the design and shape of the bead is poorly executed. When I open up a slide, the first thing your brain hones in on is the form. If the ends are not straight, or if the curves of the bead are off, then your eye tends to stop at the flaw. The extra cool pattern or shiny new glass becomes secondary to the flaws of the form.

In my beginning classes, most of the first six weeks is taken up by the donut bead shape. Until you can master the heat control required to get a clean even dimpled shape, there is not much point in moving on to bi-cones or more complicated forms. We do dress the beads up with the basic skills like dots and lines, but every bead contains the basic shape.

In my own work I am constanly tweaking the form, and trying to match shape with design. It is a matter of making a lot of beads, and trying a narrower end on this on and a gentle dip in the middle of the next one, and on and on, trying to create pleasing shapes, and then concentrating on the desgin of the pattern.

All of this ghoes back to a critique I had in college. We were all told to bring in our best piece( a glassblowing piece). All of us trotted in with the best designs, dichroic glass, and glass bling that we could muster. My proffesor( Kent Ipsen) then proceeded to paint all of the work flat black. His next words have stayed with me for twenty years.

" Now is it still your favorite piece"

When the work was all painted in a dull flat black, we sat down and got all nitty gritty on the form. That is one day I think we all learned a lot.

I also gleaned this other pearl from the days critique. " A vase with a bad lip, is like Marylin Monroe with a cold sore" . I took away the lesson that no matter how pretty the package, we will always see the flaw first. So get out to your studios and always think of the all important form.

Friday, August 07, 2009

You can now get Etsy, Ebay, and Blog update notices on Twitter.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Yay, I have a follower, Welcome Embelishyourself, you are the first official follower of the blog.

Things are a little slow sales wise. I guess I am the grass hopper. I always forget to save beads and money for the month of August. I am taking the month of August to spend some time with the kids, get my Etsy shop all in order and fully stocked, Keep ebay trickling along, and finishing plans to take over the bead world( these plans are continually evolving and changing so stay tuned).

About 1 month to go until the kids are back in school and I can start working in the studio again. First up will be a new stock of Skull and hearts series stuff. Next will be a new smaller line of beads for Etsy and Ebay.

I have started a new Etsy street team with a few fellow glass artists. We have an empty blog, which we will be filling out over the next few weeks. The purpose of the group is to promote ourselves as a group to the different online sales venues. I will keep you up on that front and link to the blog as soon as it is running..

Last thing today is a note about Drama. There seems to be a lot of it this month. I do not know if bead makers are all getting over heated or what. I think we should all just go make beads and stop worrying about who did what to whose design, and who said what on all the forums.

Take a look at the now stocked Etsy Store and let me know what you think.

Monday, August 03, 2009

I finally got around to redesigning the website. Now you can hit it up for a good overview of my work, my schedule and links to my online sales. Take a look and let me know what you think.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

I just got back from the 2009 Gathering. For you non bead people, this is a convention for the International Society of Glass beadmakers. Yes their are enough of us to have a decent conference.This was my sixth conference and they just keep getting better. Due to the economy this one was a little smaller, but I still got to meet a lot of new people.

If you are into making beads, this is the place to be. You can always find the heavy hitters sitting and talking to people who are new to the art form. The gathering organizers did a great job this year and the socials were fun and interesting along with all of the artist who put on some wonderful demos and lectures. ( I was one of them and I survived with out embarassing myself on stage).

You missed my demo on "using the masking tecnique to create squares and angles". I know it does not sound exciting, but these are the skills I am currently using to make my work, and it is all about designing hard geometric shapes to blend with the graceful curves of the bead. Below is an example of what I made in my demo.

My head is still swimming with the suggestions I got in late nite bead talks down with the ladies of room 806, so look for a few minor new directions in my work. As always the ladies would like to see more colors.

Thanks to everyone at the conference, see you in Rochester.

For more info on the conferences and the great organization that puts them on got to

Saturday, June 13, 2009

I am in the process of revamping my business model. Sadly for those who have not had a class yet, my new plan is to travel and teach a lot less. It was getting a little overwhelming, and I never had time to work on my own work in the studio.

I have renewed my Etsy store and fully stocked it. I am spending a lot more time in the studio( and I must say that some cool new stuff is coming). Ebay is now a regular activity at the studio.

A lot of the new focus is towards streamlining my items, and keeping my artistic integrity at the same time. This can be difficult when trying to make a living, but I want to be proud of my work, not just make production work for money.

So here is your job, take a look at Ebay and Etsy and let me know what you think, any comments or helpful suggestions are welcome.


Here are a few of the new rings from the Etsy store

I am super exited about some of my new work. For a while now I have had the desire to take my current style of beads and carry it through to a finished piece of jewelry. It is a desire to see my work to the end. Normally I make a bead and it goes off to a collector or a jeweler who take it to the next step.

Here are a few of the new pieces. The silver is kept really simple to allow the glass to be focus. I will say that silver soldering is a royal pain. I am not used to careful measuring, cutting, filing, cleaning and all that goes with metal work. My hats are of to you full timers.

Any way, here is the work, what do you all think??

Sunday, May 10, 2009

New Collaboration

One of my students( who is a wonderful artist herself) and I have begun a collaborative series of Focal beads. I am making beads with recessed areas for her to make woven bead sections. As we move along we plan to make things more complex. These will be available at our respective shows, Ebay, and Etsy. These first few were about the mechanics of the process. My partner in this is Ingrid Bernhardt. You can see all her creations at :

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Whew.... it has been a very busy week around here. I have been back at the torch making whatever I want. After a winter of hearts and working on the house it is a great change. I stored up all my ideas from the winter and am charging ahead full steam. Here are a few of the new pieces from the last week or two.

I am having a lot of fun introducing some new colors into the designs. Those of you familiar with my work know that I like to stick the simple high contrast colors. Well all that is changing, so bring on the color wheel.

Let me know what you think. Its time for me to head to the torch.


Sunday, February 15, 2009

I've got lot of heart

For the last month I have been working on these hearts. Pictured you see about 150 of the after cleaning. They are ready to be signed. This project was a commission by Bon Secours. They were great to deal with and the hearts will go to the donors and staff that will attend the opening of a new world class heart center here in the city of Richmond. The second picture is all of the finished pieces nestle in their packing foam awaiting delivery.

Now we can get back to our regularly scheduled art work.

Look for some new marbles in the near future. But first I plan to take a few days off and rest my wrists, and hands.


Greening the Studio

Often I worry about the environmental aspects of my artwork. Is what I make worth the impact of running a studio. I do try and keep everything to a minimum.

Here are a few of my efforts:

My studio is at home, no car rides or energy used to get to work. Services such as telephone and internet do double duty for home and office.

Order supplies in bulk. This keeps down energy and money used to ship supplies. It helps me and the environment.

I try to conserve materials and minimize waste.

I have been cutting back on traveling, trying to sell more work through the internet, and teach more local classes. I know that plane trips really hurt my yearly carbon footprint.

I do not air condition the studio.I just adjust working times in the summer to match the cooler parts of the day. A fan is my best friend in august.

My newest tinkering has come up with this solar air heater. It pulls warm air from the studio and uses the sun to heat it up about fifteen degrees and returns it to the studio. It is still a work in progress, and I hope to add a solar powered fan to move air through the system. Right now the fan is on a timer that is set according to the sunny times of the day.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Whew!!! it is busy around here.

I am pleased to announce that the Visual Arts Center now has a full time lampwork area. I taught the first marble workshop in the new space last Saturday. As usual it was a great bunch of students, and the class went off with out a hitch. I must admit that I was a little nervous about teaching marbles to people who have never lit a torch before. They all did great and everybody got a couple of nice marbles to take home.

I am also in the middle of making 350 heart shaped pendants. A local hospital( Bon Secours) is opening a new heart care facility , and at the opening, the doctors and donors are all getting one of these hearts. This happens to be the same hospital that my mom went to when she had a heart attack, so I am of course glad to see that they are continuing the work that saved her life.

I am also pleased that Bon Secours is buying gifts from a local artist, and not some vase that any number event cordinators may get. Lets hear it for supporting the local art scene.

Some day soon I may get back to my own artwork, I have a bunch of marble designs floating around in my head.

All for now, Brad

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Needless to say, I have not posted in a while. It is kind of slow at the studio right. I am firmly in the grip of the dreaded winter doldrums. I will be in the studio a lot over the next few weeks. Bon Secours Hospital just commissioned 350 pendants for a heart hospital grand opening. Nothing like a deadline to kick me in the pants.

Otherwise all is quiet. I am having trouble deciding where to go with my art work. So expect to see a lot of experiments on Ebay over the next few months.

All for now,


Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Well I had a wonderful weekend in the mountains making beads. It was a luxury to be able to concentrate on nothing but glass. I sat down at the torch on Saturday at 9:30, and next thing I knew it was 9:00 at night. I will be posting some of the work as time permits. I was the designated teacher on Friday, and the class was great. I think I learned as much as some of the students. Teaching forces you to examine your work and give justification for the methods and outcomes of your labor. The final assignment was to combine my methods with the students previous methods and merge them into something new. It was wonderful to see the growth of everyone. The wheels were really turning in our heads.

I did learn that Chattanooga is a really long way from Richmond. I also learned that the mountains are a wasteland for really good radio stations. I also learned that Chattanooga is a pretty cool town, not the small southern city that I pictured.


Tuesday, October 28, 2003

Well I am over my rant about daylight savings time. I have been getting ready for a bead show in Richmond VA this weekend. I have come to the conclusion that pixie dust is evil. Every time I sit down to do sets and pairs for the show, the dust sits there and calls to me. I find myself experimenting half the night with the stuff. I like the results so far, but I really have other stuff to do. Here is one of the beads from this week.

As you can see it is good work but it is not the inventory that I need for the show.

I hate the time change. As soon as you get your children into a nice little routine, along comes a one hour difference as puts a wrench in the whole. A 3 year old does not care what the clock says. So I have to face a very energetic child one hour earlier everyday.

On top of that, it is now dark when we used to go to the playground. So now on top of all the other stuff we are stuck in the house after the nap.


Saturday, October 18, 2003

Well it is after midnight on a Friday night. You never realize how much life will change when you have children. 4 years ago I would have been out and about. Now I am enjoying a quiet house, getting some work done. My three year old reminded me that " Halloween is getting very close to our house now". For some reason that struck me as funny. One little secret of having kids is that holidays get to more fun as the kids get involved. A couple of nights ago we made Halloween sugar cookies. By my daughters reaction you would have thought that I had just spent a year handbuilding her the coolest present in the world. My normally sassy little girl was replaced by the sweet 2 year old that I used to know.

As soon as we put away the shorts and got out the pants for colder weather she has been convinced that it will snow soon. So all of you in the south , this is your warning! According to Avera it will snow tomorrow. It is funny that no matter how many times it does not snow, she does not get discouraged in her meteorological aspirations.

Later, I am off to finish formatting this weeks auctions. Keep your eyes out for them on Saturday, there are some great winestoppers for x-mas presents.

Brad Pearson

Thursday, October 16, 2003

Well I am still working on getting the website up and running. My Dad is doing most of the hard work, I get to just say how things should look.

Last night in the studio, I continued the work on my new Idoleyes series.

It usually takes twenty or thirty pieces to get settled into to the direction of a new series. I have to find a balance between the swirling eyes looking mystical and downright busy. There always seems to be a fine line that is easily crossed into chaos. A good friend of mine always said , "working with glass is like cutting hair.... You have to know when to stop!" At least last night went better than the previous. After working 1 hour on a single bead I ended up with a piece of crud and a nice little burn. That was one experiment that did not work!!

For those of you who want to see the work in person, my next show will be in Richmond at the intergalactic bead festival the first weekend in November.