Sometimes when I begin to work on a piece, I have a very strong visual image or sketch to work from. Sometimes I have a vague idea of what it is I want to make, so I make component parts and begin to combine them. Sometimes I work very intuitively making a part of a piece, waiting and studying it then making more and repeating the process until the piece is completed. At some point in the construction, however, no matter how I begin, the piece takes over and dictates to me what it needs.
In my work I utilize several different techniques. Not every technique is used in every piece, but most contain several. I begin with glass forms that I have made from sculpting or blowing solid rods or tubes of glass in different diameters using the flame of a bench torch. The torch is fueled with propane and oxygen. I vary the size of the flame constantly from a very fine, soft flame to a very large, bushy one that is extremely hot. The type of work I am doing determines the kind of flame that I need. I always begin with clear glass, but sometimes I combine colored glass with the clear in either internal compositions or surface decoration. Some of the smaller creations are made quickly with very little kiln work involved and are put in the annealer only once or twice before they are completed.