Friday, September 26, 2008

Relax, Rejuvenate, Recharge

I will be taking a break for the next few days while recharging my creative 'batteries' with a trek to one of my favorite spots, The Grand Tetons. I hope to see lots of moose, elk, buffalo, and other wildlife. I also look forward to hiking in Yellowstone and finding more inspiration from nature. I know Dan will be taking plenty of photographs and my hope is there will be some future stained glass designs for me in those photos of his.

I also hope that we will have the opportunity to see some of the gorgeous fall colors in those settings. I love this time of year.

For now, I wish all of you continued inspired creativity while I relax, rejuvenate, and recharge.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Glass at the Gardens - Opening Reception

What a great evening!

Dan & I got there early and had a chance to walk around looking at all the beautiful art glass. Incredible. When we got to the display case where my jewelry was, to my surprise and delight, the Floral Talisman (pictured in this post) had sold! What a way to start the evening. This is the first time any of my work has sold at the Glass Artists Fellowship.... Glass at the Gardens Show.

The next pleasant surprise was seeing Riva Sweetrocket. Riva is a friend and very talented contemporary pastel artist in Denver, represented by Plus+Gallery. Riva has wanted to see my work and Dan & I had a chance to walk around the show pointing out my pieces. She plans on bringing her husband, Rohan, to see the exhibit this weekend. How cool. And she wants to see more of my work, so the next time she & Rohan are in the Springs, they will stop by the house.

Then Kent Lauer arrived after a day of teaching his Dichroic Sculpture class at D and L. I was able to show Kent my entries in the show and I am very flattered by his kind words and opinion of what I had done. Thanks for your encouragement Kent!

I also had a chance to visit with some of the folks from D & L Stained Glass Supply. They had their display on this history of glass at the show. Really interesting.

It was a great evening. Dan & I had a lot of fun. Unfortunately, the air conditioning must have been off as it was rather toasty. However, that didn't dampen the creative atmosphere in the room. It has been a wonderful week for me. Now I have all these new ideas swirling in my head for my next projects. Can't wait to start them.....

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Facetted Dichroic Pendants

I'm posting a couple of pictures of the pendants that I created in the Kent Lauer class this past Sunday at D & L Stained Glass. Kent was an angel and corrected my initial efforts at shaping these. I think of them as his work and I could never part with them. My goal will be to create more, once I can afford to purchase the machinery necessary to create them. I find them to be absolutely stunning.

The process involves two layers of 1/4" think clear glass with dichroic glass sandwiched between them. The three layers are glued together, using a UV glue. Then the square is shaped, beveled if you will, to allow the beauty of the dichroic glass shine through the prisms created in the beveling process.

These two will be wire wrapped and I will post pictures when they are finished. That may be in another week or two due to my current schedule of events. Enjoy!

All Nine Entries Accepted for Glass at the Gardens

I have some mixed emotions this morning. I am happy to report that all nine of my entries for The Glass at the Gardens Show have been accepted! It's great to know they all made the cut! I posted a few of them in my gallery at Art Scuttlebutt, so you can see them by clicking here and then go to view more pics under my picture on that page.

While I'm very happy and humbled by being accepted, I'm also more than a little awe struck by the beauty of some of the other pieces in the show. The talent in the Glass Artist Fellowship is phenomenal and I know I must continue to work hard so my work becomes even better. It's good to see what others do; that's a motivator. I always strive to set the bar even higher for what I plan to create on my next piece. Stretch, grow! I KNOW I can do it and I will. It's a real boost to see the work of others that I admire....helps me to drive myself to get better.

I feel very blessed and look forward to the opening reception tomorrow night. Boy am I going to be one tired puppy this week with all the trips up to Denver. It's worth it though......

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Invest in Yourself

I have to stress how important it is to invest in yourself and your continuing education. Learning art, or anything I think, requires that you are continually learning and growing.

Today reinforced my belief that learn anything and everything you can from people who are skilled, talented, and willing to share. Seek out those individuals whose work you admire and learn all you can from them.

I had the great opportunity today to attend a class taught by Kent Lauer. WOW.

And there were other artists who attended this workshop too. We all wanted to learn more. It is just terrific to hear others talk about their addiction to glass. What a medium! If it ever captures you, you're hooked.

Kent is phenomenal. Great knowledge, skills, and humor. Today I made two dichroic sculpture pendants, which I will wire wrap. And Kent will be coming to Glass at the Gardens on the opening reception on Wednesday I hope all of my pieces will be accepted into the show when they are delivered tomorrow. What a week this is going to be.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Show Preparations

I'm taking a break from working on everything that will be delivered to the Botanic Gardens on Monday in preparation for Glass at the Gardens, Ancient Origins. Whew.

Last night I spoke with Maggie Heard, Membership VP for Glass Artist Fellowship, who has also taken on the massive responsibility of logging all the entries for the show, along with who knows what else. It's reassuring, in an odd way I realize, that she too is working on the finishing touches of things at the last minute, so to speak.

So while I work diligently today at the cleaning and polishing of everything for the show (Glass needs to sparkle ya know), I do take comfort knowing others are doing the same for this show. I shared this with my husband this morning and he had quite the laugh.

Tomorrow I'm off to D & L Stained Glass in Denver (my supplier of glass and tools), where I'm enrolled in one of their classes. This one is Faceted Dichroic Pendants and the instructor is Kent Lauer, a nationally known glass artist. Good stuff. I know how important it is to invest in yourself by taking classes and growing your personal talent. I figure I'll stop learning about earthly things when I die, not before! I love learning new things.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Lines Into Shapes - Estes Park CO

Tomorrow night is the opening reception for the Lines Into Shapes Show in Estes Park, CO. I wish I could attend, but it is going to be difficult because Estes is almost 3 hours away. Even if we worked through lunch tomorrow, the earliest I could leave the office is 3 PM. So I will be there in spirit and represented by my work.

I found this great article describing more about the show and its beginnings. I am so honored to have been one of the artists selected to be in the show.

Last Art Hop for this Season

It's a little bittersweet...tonight is the last Art Hop of the 2008 season. Dan and I will be stopping by the gallery for a little while. And we will visit another shop where we know some people will be having new works on display.

This is the first year we've gone to Art Hop and we've been amazed by the turn out. Monument is such a quaint town and the thing that is so exciting to us is that it is becoming a growing artist community. I'm very happy to be part of it.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Article in Local Paper

Pretty exciting day for me, an article about Krucoff Studios was published in the local paper today. Here is the link to the article, which I took the liberty of publishing on our website:

Now my husband likes to tease that I'm a "Famous Local Artist", FLA for short! My how I love him and his great sense of humor!

Pendent / Earring Combos

I just wanted to share some of my pendent and earring combinations. I told Heather at Second Street Art Market that if I didn't feel the earrings were right, I would not bring them in. Here are a few of my favorites! Hope you like them too.

The picture on the left is on Infused Blue and on the right is of Floral Dreams.

I now do earrings

It's odd, sometimes I wonder if I'm spreading myself too thin by doing jewelry vs stained glass vs decorative fused glass. I enjoy it all, so I guess that's my answer...if you enjoy it, do it.

PLUS, my jewelry has been very well received, especially since I've been wire wrapping it. And the progress I've made in my wire wrapping skills is very interesting to me. The first book I read on some of the techniques said that your hands and fingers would feel awkward at first, but with practice (as applied to all things) it gets easier.

So, these days my hands are in control of the wire most of the time. It takes nothing to wrap a pendants. Earrings have been my nemesis of sorts. BUT I am happy to report that I conquered them this weekend. When I started working on earrings a little over a week ago, it took me a good 2 hours to wrap one pair. Frustration was heightened and my husband, who knows me oh so well, said "You can't expect to just wrap earrings as well or as quickly as you do pendents...". Yes, my personality is such that I expect I should be able to do something almost immediately...oh yes, and do it well too. Sigh.

Well I continued to persevere and low and behold, my speed, agility, and beauty of the wraps came fairly quickly. Now I have earrings, that I think are quite beautiful, and I will be delivering my first sets to the gallery today.

As Dory, in Finding Nemo, so aptly put "Just keep swimming, just keep swimming...." Perseverance does pay off! Make it a great day.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

More Cyberspace Antics

I continue to experience problems with my feeds to others not updating. The problem may be when I upload my pictures, even though I do that through blogger. I've tried feedburner's validator and it doesn't like some html code around my pictures. So, I can try to fix this code and see if that has any affect. I'm working the problem, but it may take a few days due to other commitments I have and I can't get 'lost in the web' so to speak. The geek in me wants to get this fixed asap, but I have other priorities. Bear with me. Thanks!

Ra's Sun Vessel

Deep purple with gold stripes. Another entry for the Glass at the Gardens.

I'm still experiencing some problems with publishing my blog feeds on other sites. I've tried a few things this morning to try to get things corrected and I hope this entry updates on other links.

Thanks for your patience and for following my artistic endeavors.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Tower Falls at Yellowstone

Stained glass is my first love when it comes to my glass work. This is a design that I created from one of my husband's photographs. I took some artistic liberties with it in modifying the scene. While I've done 3-D affects with glass before, this is one of the first times that I've had the glass sit on top of the frame. In this case, I took the leaf clusters from the trees and had them sit on branches extending from the tree and over lap parts of the glass.

Another Entry - Floral Talisman

I had such great fun with some of the jewelry pieces I entered in the Glass at the Garden's show. This one has a very unusual shape, deliberate on my part, and some of the dichroic pieces formed these delicate, branching flower like shapes. I'm very happy with it.

Branches From The White Tree of Gondor

I like this piece, but it won't make the cut for my entries in the Glass at the Garden's show.

Initially, some of the kiln shelf paper (a brand I have discontinued using) flipped on top of the edges in some places during firing. Such a disappointment. I tried to salvage it with some cold working and adding a border, but on a subsequent firing, two of the air bubbles burst through the surface of the piece. It's not terrible, but it's not acceptable for the show entry.

I still feel like it deserves some recognition, so I'm posting a picture of it.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Black Forest Pine Cones

First, I'm happy to report that my cyberspace problems appear to be resolved. My thanks to fellow artist, Karen (blog A Visual Journey) and my husband, Dan, for their help in getting things back and running.

On to show preparations. This plate is one of my favorite entries for the Glass at the Gardens show. I'm calling this Black Forest Pine Cones. What I find really cool about this piece is that the little pieces of glass that form the pine cones, are raised as they just tack fused. The rest of the plate is fully fused. When I slumped the blank in the mold, the pine cones retained their raised texture.

It's been a great day. I've been wire wrapping jewelry pieces too and getting ready to update both of our main websites. Tomorrow is going to be busy! I'll be posting more pictures tomorrow too.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Cyberspace Troubles

One of my online friends alerted me to a problem with my blog. Apparently the feed to it is a little confused, and as a result of trying to fix it, those of you who have subscribed, have probably lost your subscriptions.

I welcome and encourage those who enjoy reading my online journal to sign up for my latest postings.

This weekend I'll be posting new pictures of completed work.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Basset Supervision

I jokingly refer to "Basset Supervision" during my work. Here are some photos of the adorable threesome. One of them, sometimes all three, are with me as I work on my glass pieces. When I am cutting large sheets of glass, they are banned from the studio for safety reasons. Any other time, they are welcome company. Newton is the pup...all of 2 years old and the photo of his is just the face shot. Nocturne is fondly referred to as Little Miss. She's the one that is sleeping on the pillows with her tongue out (now that's relaxed!). And Bueller (named after the movie....once we heard Ben Stein's delivery of that name, we knew it would be perfect for a basset name) is sleeping on blankets I have in the studio. Bueller is the most confident dog that Dan & I have ever had.

So these are my basset supervisors. While they may try to claim artistic control of my work, that wouldn't be right. However, they are loyal companions and great snuggle bunnies.

I thought it would be fun to share pictures of the three hounds in my life. I have done some basset tribute windows (in stained glass) for some of the folks responsible for allowing us to have these wonderful dogs in our life, which you can find on the gallery of my website, Kathleen Krucoff Studio. Enjoy! Notice two out of the three are sleeping....something they do very well.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

My First Interview

Last night I was interviewed for an article that will be posted in the local paper, The Tri-Lakes Tribune. The story should come out in next week's issue. They only publish the paper once a week.

I had fun discussing what I do with glass art and showing the reporter my studio and work. Our three bassets were relegated to the back yard and carefully observed my discussions. He took several photos of me with various works in the studio. The photos will be in black and white; I must admit I'm anxious to see what the story will show. He decided to feature Krucoff Studios as a small business interest story.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Branches From The White Tree of Gondor

I'm a fan of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. This is my latest for the Glass at the Gardens, pre-firing picture. I'm calling it "Branches From The White Tree of Gondor"

Pine Cones

This is ready to head to the kiln today, after the other piece I just finished firing comes out. It's one of those ideas that has been rustling through my head for the last week or so.

It may be a stretch for this to fit with the Ancient Origins theme of the Glass at the Garden's show, but the way I think about it is that trees developed eons ago, so why not pay tribute to them?

Ra's Sun Vessel

This is the vase that had some pretty unique results. It will be one of my entries for the Glass at the Garden's Show. It's a very deep, rich purple with gold glass accents. The picture doesn't do it justice (my husband will take a much better photo of it than I just did). It has a very dramatic look. I hope it will fit nicely with the theme of the show, "Ancient Origins".

Earring / Pendent Sets

Here is a photo of my new earring and pendent sets. I am pretty happy with the results. I have more to do, but this is an example of some of my first, new and improved earring and pendent wraps. I just took this photo this morning and my husband, the photographer in the family, will take a much nicer one for publishing on our website.

Friday, September 5, 2008


Remember, I posted earlier today that things happen for a reason???

Well, when I got home from my corporate job, the message light was flashing on the phone. A gentleman from the local paper wants to interview me about my work and the piece that was accepted at the Lines into Shapes show in Estes Park. We will meet on Monday evening, here at my studio. Both my husband and I think this is a terrific opportunity for exposure and getting information out there about me and my glass work. To our way of thinking, this is a better opportunity and can open more doors for me.

Now you know why I firmly believe things happen for a reason..............

Things Happen for a Reason

Those of you who know me well, know that I firmly believe things happen for a reason. We may not understand why when certain events are taking place, but ultimately, it becomes clear.

So many good, wonderful things have been happening for me with the response to my work. A fellow artist recommended that I submit my work to an online art wholesaler, which I did. It's been a learning experience and has helped me to grow. My submission went to the jury last Friday and yesterday I received the results. I wasn't accepted and that's ok. The jurors were very encouraging about where I am with my fused work right now, but I need to continue to develop my style in order to stand out from other fused glass artists. Deep down I know this is true and I've been working really hard the last couple of months to come up with ways to make my fused work more distinctive.

I have no arguments with their evaluations. In fact, I'm grateful to them and I'm actually relieved. Yep, relieved. When I submitted my work last week, I have to say it was with a good deal of trepidation, because I was concerned that if I was accepted I may actually have trouble keeping up with orders....if they came in with any volume at all. Remember, I'm a geek by day with a full time job in the corporate world, and artist by nights and weekends. I don't have a lot of spare time. While it would be great to deal with the problem of so many orders to fill, I think I'd rather ease into that situation gradually.

My loyalty belongs to Heather at Second Street who first gave me an opportunity to be in a gallery. I cannot and will not let her down.

My dear husband and soul mate sees this as a good thing too. Now I can approach other galleries, maybe in the mountain communities, Denver, or Santa Fe. If/when I'm accepted at another gallery, let's see how well I can keep up with the demand with two galleries, then move on to three, etc. Plus who knows what the exposure in Estes Park and Denver will do for me with those upcoming shows?

So I am learning from this experience. I've been exposed to how to present, prepare your work for jury review...I can do better. And a bonus for me is I had a couple of new ideas pop in my head this morning for things I want to create. I'm still working on things for the Glass at the Gardens show. I'm busy and most of all I'm happy.

Yes, trust me, things happen for a reason.........