Meet Joan of Petsinglass
You can visit her store here:
How many years have you been an artist?
I never considered myself an artist. Art classes were torture for me in school. It’s only been in the last few years that my overactive imagination has become constructive and given me the ability to express myself through glass. I received my business license with the Commonwealth of VA in January 2006. For about a year before that, my work was sold at a local stained glass store.
How many years have you worked with glass?
My first stained glass class was in January 2004. From the first class, I knew this was something I would enjoy doing for a very long time. With the help of a very patient instructor who didn’t mind answering my million and one questions, I’ve been able to develop my skills.
What triggers ideas for new projects?
There is really no one thing that triggers the idea for a project. Inspiration comes from just about everywhere and everything.
When do ideas come to you? How often?
Ideas pop up at the weirdest times and the strangest places. I work full-time and do glass as a hobby right now, so I can be sitting in a meeting and an idea will pop into my head, or driving down the road there can be an interesting looking tree along the way, or a squirrel can run across the road. It’s not something I try to force or do intentionally; it’s just something that “happens”.
What percentage of the day do you think about or work on your art? There are days when working in glass is all I think about. Then there are days when it doesn’t even cross my mind. Sometimes I have to literally force myself to sit down and relax a bit, otherwise I would continue working on projects that will end up sitting in storage.
Do you create daily?
Whenever the inspiration hits, I will usually head for my work room. Sometimes it’s not possible due to other commitments, but if I don’t have to go to the office the next day, it’s not usual for me to be working into the wee hours of the morning. It’s very relaxing for me. Time seems to fly by when I’m working on glass. I try to not work on anything for more than an hour or so during the week after work because it’s difficult shutting down the creative side of my mind when it’s time to go to sleep. The really bad part is when I lose track of time and don’t realize it’s time for the dog to go out until he comes in the work room and starts poking at me. I’m just lucky he’s such a good dog! Otherwise my home would be a total disaster!
How important is it for you to create art?
How important is it for you to create art?
I have found that glass work is very therapeutic. It helps relieve the stress of the day and gives my imagination an outlet that nothing else ever has. It’s very relaxing for me. Time seems to fly by when I’m working on glass. I try to not work on anything during the week after work because I have a hard time shutting down the creative side of my mind when it’s time to go to sleep. But on week ends or nights when I don’t have to go to the office the next day, I’ll stay up all night and just work on glass. The really bad part is when I lose track of time and don’t realize it’s time for the dog to go out until he comes in the work room and starts poking at me. I’m just lucky he’s such a good dog! Otherwise my home would be a total disaster!
Do you feel that choosing the artist’s life has been a sacrifice?
Have you given up certain luxuries?
Since I still work a full-time job and only do the glass work during free time, I don’t think I have given up anything. Once I can retire and devote more time to the glass work, that will probably change.
Describe your studio.
Organized mess is probably the best description for the work room. Everything has its place, but it usually doesn’t end up there. No one else would be able to find anything easily, but it works for me.
Tell me something about you.
It’s probably obvious from my store, but I LOVE animals; dogs in particular. I’d rather spend my time in a room full of dogs than socializing with people. They are so much easier to figure out than people. I volunteer for two dog related charities (Blue Ridge Assistance Dogs, which trains Service Dogs for the physically disabled, and The Magic Bullet Fund, which raises money for dogs in the US with cancer whose owners can’t afford the high cost of treatment on their own) and alternate donating proceeds from sales between the 2 charities. I’m looking forward to retirement at the end of 2008 so that I can spend more time being creative.