Behind-The-Scenes of Glass Art

On Sunday I had the pleasure of meeting several people and documenting their experience of learning to make glass beads at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon, NY. In addition to the glass beads, I watched as an experienced glass blower created an ornament.

One thing I love in photography is taking photos of people doing something they are enthralled by. It always creates a unique image and is great storytelling. The expressions are authentic and there is no posing. It’s real.

And, ever since I visited Venice for the first time while in college, after having taken my first photojournalism course, I was very inspired to document the process of glass blowing – because I find it to be a very intriguing art and I’m passionate about capturing and sharing things that we are not used to thinking about or seeing. So, when my editor asked if I wanted to cover the glass workshops this past weekend as part of a series they are doing on “places to learn new things in 2013”, I was super excited to have the opportunity and access.

Walking into Hudson Beach Glass, on Main St in Beacon, a small-ish, artsy, comeback “city” in the Mid-Hudson Valley, you are surrounded by beautiful and delicate artistic pieces and all the colors in the visible spectrum. It’s truly gorgeous. Everything from large glass bowls to tiny animals and jewelry.

The bead making workshop, which is a weekend intensive and offered three times before June, shows how to make all kids of decorative beads with glass sticks and a torch – as well as other accessories that can create a layered and variegated effect in the beads.

Hudson Beach Glass also offers one-on-one glass-blowing lessons, were you can start by learning to make a paper-weight and eventually create very fragile glass ornaments.

See the photos by clicking on the image below and scrolling through, or on Newsday at this link, and read the article here.

As usual, all photos are © Caylena Cahill/CC Photo & Media, all rights reserved. If you wish to obtain a copy of any of the images, please contact me for further information.

Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, demonstrates adding a mesh to her bead, which will give it a multi-colored, layered pattern. Maddalena teaches a bead-making workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Beth Silverstein, of Brooklyn Heights, makes a glass bead during a workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. The glass bead making workshop, taught by Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, is a weekend intensive course and will take place two more times before the summer. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Glass items are available for purchase at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Nadine Sapiente, of Fort Mongomery, blows air into a tube  that will inflate her glass ornament. Sepiente has been taking private glass blowing lessens at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon for about two years. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Nadine Sapiente, of Fort Mongomery, adds color to hot glass that will eventually be an ornament. Sepiente has been taking private glass blowing lessens at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon for about two years. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Nadine Sapiente, of Fort Mongomery, adds molton glass to an ornament she is making. Sepiente,  the principal of West Point Elementary School, has been taking private glass blowing lessens at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon for about two years. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Nadine Sapiente, of Fort Mongomery, adds color to hot glass that will eventually be an ornament. Sepiente has been taking private glass blowing lessens at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon for about two years. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Glass paper-weights sit on a stand in the glass-blowing room at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Hot glass boils and bubbles as a result of mixing materials to create a multi-layered effect. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Students watch as Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, demonstrates a bead-making technique at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

A kiln hardens the glass beads made during the workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, melts glass during a demonstration at her bead making workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Glass beads sit on a table during a bead making workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Beth Silverstein, of Brooklyn Heights, and Sarah La Spada, of Wallkill, make glass beads during a workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Sarah La Spada, of Wallkill, melts glass to make a bead Sunday at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Lorinda Hill, of Pomona, cuts petals into hot glass in order to make a flower during a workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

A glass bead on the end of a screw can be used as a handle on a drawer or the knob on a box. (Jan. 13, 2013)

This glass bead, made by Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, features a popout tulip on a multi-layered background. Maddalena teaches a glass bead making workshop at at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Joyce Rosen, of Manhattan, melts glass to make a bead Sunday during a workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. The workshop, taught by Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, is a weekend intensive course where students learn to make glass beads. It will take place two more times before the summer. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Glass beads can be used on a bracelet like this one on the table during a workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, presses the petals on her glass flower using plyers during her workshop Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. The workshop is a weekend intensive course where students learn to make glass beads. It will take place two more times before the summer. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, makes a flower bead during her workshop Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. The workshop is a weekend intensive course where students learn to make glass beads. It will take place two more times before the summer. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, cuts hot glass with scissors to make petals of a flower as part of a demonstration during her workshop Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. The workshop is a weekend intensive course where students learn to make glass beads. It will take place two more times before the summer. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, shows students at her workshop how to make a glass flower bead during a workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. The workshop is a weekend intensive course and will take place two more times before the summer. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Teacher Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, helps Lorinda Hill, of Pomona, while she makes a glass bead during a workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. The glass bead making workshop, taught by Maddalena, of Haverstraw, is a weekend intensive course and will take place two more times before the summer. (Jan. 13, 2013)

Donna DeFelice, of Stony Point, Lorinda Hill, of Pomona, and Joyce Rosen, of Manhattan, make glass beads during a workshop at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. The glass bead making workshop, taught by Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, is a weekend intensive course and will take place two more times before the summer. (Jan. 13, 2013)

A student makes a glass beadduring a workshop  at Hudson Beach Glass in Beacon. The glass bead making workshop, taught by Stephanie Maddalena, of Haverstraw, is a weekend intensive course and will take place two more times before the summer. (Jan. 13, 2013)

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