I was attending another community college and taking various workshops, making sculptures with wood, metal, plaster and various mixed media. One day I met up with a friend from my high school who was enrolled in Salem’s Glass Art program. He told me what he was making and I was extremely intrigued by the idea of making my sculptures in glass. I looked into the program that night and registered the next day.
During my two years at Salem, my most important achievement has probably been seeing some of my glass sculptures get into galleries when two years ago I knew nothing about the medium. I came into this program not knowing anything about glass — I mean I knew absolutely nothing. The teachers at Salem taught me everything I know about glass, from the first day of how to simply turn on a torch to the present day of how to get my work out there in the art community.
After graduating from Salem in May 2009, I am going to attend Jacksonville University to earn my BFA in Glass Art. After that, I would like to get my MFA and become a teacher in the Glass Art field. Because of the teachers here at Salem, I have been really able to grow as an artist. I would love to give back by one day teaching students who know nothing about glass but are willing to learn, just like I was.
My advice is not to be afraid if you have never done anything like this before. Just be open-minded and willing to learn and you will get there.
Once you get into this program, you will repeatedly hear how the glass community is just like one big crazy family spread out across the world, and let me tell you, it is. Most glass artists are some of the nicest people you will ever meet and are completely willing to lend you a helping hand when you need it. So don’t be afraid to ask.