Today's featured artist is Laney who sells her beads under the name Izzybeads, who is actually the dog! Before we get started, let's take a look as some of Laney's spacer beads:
What do you make? What or you known for?
I am known for my animal beads and also my flowers. My lampwork is all about the sculpture. I love to poke and pinch the glass whilst its molten and make it come to life, I get bored very quickly so each bead being different is the only way I can make a set. I tend to swing from fun and humour to 'grown up' so my animals fill my need for humour and my flowers for growing up. Just lately, after another birthday, I have found myself finding my inner feminine side and the flowers have really consumed me this time round: maybe its something to do with age? I am also known for my bumble bee beads, I make hundreds of them and each one makes me smile when I make him. The more I make at one sitting the more cross eyed they become, those ones are always the first to find new homes!
Do you ever space out at the torch? What do you think about / listen to / watch?
I listen to the radio. Radio 2 here in the UK all those golden oldies from the 70's and 80's that I can sing, badly, along too. Its been known that deliveries have failed to be delivered and my kids think its because I was singing my head off in the shed at the bottom of the garden and the driver took fright and drove off. I love rock music, Abba and anything that's got a good sing along tune. I even make it up if I need too.
What was the Worst burn / cut you ever got??? How did it happen, where was it? Special treatment??? My worst burn was a freak accident. The glass rod shattered in the flame, a small chunk broke away bounced on the desk and hit me under the chin and then slowly burned a track all down my neck! It was incredibly painful and sore for weeks and I had a bead fair within a few days of getting the burn. I think I may have got sympathy sales from it! I am not very good at treating my burns and cuts, I heal really quickly, usually, and other than maybe sucking a finger that got too close to the flame or using the water from the dump jar to quickly splash onto a burn I rarely do anything else, but that neck burn I did have to use some very soothing cream for a long time.
What was the hardest skill for you to learn how did you overcome? Any tips to share?
The hardest skill...ummm... I am not sure really, other than one accidental lesson - my life is full of opportunity accidents - I have taught myself everything from encasing to sculpting the glass. I get really frustrated when I have something in my head and I can't make it happen in the 'real' so I do something over and over and over again until I finally get it. Before I 'found' glass as an artistic medium, I used to draw and that I think does help me in my beads. If something doesn't go right first time round, I tend to sit and doodle it until I figure out why it didn't happen and what I can do to make it right. I do live by the mantra 'if at first you don't succeed, jump, spit, shout and scream, dig the garden over and have another go'. LOL
What is YOUR favorite jewelry to wear?
I wear a very simple chook (chicken) bead the first one I made, it was after the loss of my first chook Duracell. We had battery chooks Duracell, Ever Ready and Lithium and although they didn't live too long I loved them and they started my chicken bead phase. I have no chooks now since fox and badger killed the second group of girls we had but my chook bead reminds me of my girls and one day I will have some more. I also have a pair of fried egg earrings that I wear to match my chook pendant.
What is your favorite thing you've made? I don't think I have a favourite thing I have made, I have favourite 'muses' - the flowers and the animals. I will like one more than something else but then, I make something different and that could be my new favourite. Other than my chook that I wear, I have a collection of dragons and dogs dotted around my house, usually the ones that don't make it, the chipped and broken or invalids as I call them. They are all my favourites :)
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