North Rim Glass Studio, LLC

I was privileged to interview just a few of the artists at the 2014 Western Design Conference in September as we showed our copper and glass art there.

Jared and Nicole Davis are North Rim Glass Studio, LLC . When asked how they got started in glass their answer was, “We didn’t pick glass, it picked us.”

Jared and Nicole Davis of North Rim Glass Studio- at the 2014 Western Design Conference
Jared and Nicole Davis of North Rim Glass Studio- at the 2014 Western Design Conference

In the early 90’s Jared had the opportunity to begin an apprenticeship with a local glass studio. Three years into that apprenticeship, he met Jan-Erik Ritzman and Sven Ake Carlsson of Transjo Sweden, and was invited to study with them. Jared, Nicole, and their 2 small children spent 2 years living in Sweden where the couple perfected their glass skills.

You can read about their techniques and adventures at northrimglassstudio.com

The pieces the Davis’s showed at the Western Design Conference in September were incredibly beautiful. They received Honorable Mention in the Accents category. Jared says he is the principal designer of the vases, and Nicole designs the chandeliers.

One of their designs I was especially drawn to, resembles Rakuu. They explained to me that it is done with a reduction technique that creates a metallic finish.

Their chandeliers are compellingly reminiscent of antlers, in both color and texture but reflect the light so beautifully.

Glass blowing is a different animal, altogether, from stained glass and fusing and I am always in awe of the artists who have perfected its challenge. It was very nice to visit Nicole and Jared’s booth and hear their unique story.

North Rim Glass is located in Crawford, Colorado and their studio is open to the public.

Posted in In the Community | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gearing up for Autumn in the Kiln Studio

Kiln at Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Summered Over Kiln
Cold weather means the  perfect time to fire up the kiln. So that means I have to clean a summer’s worth of dust and dirt from the kiln studio . . . which isn’t a bad thing.
Glass Racks at Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Glass RAcks
It can be really refreshing and inspiring to look through the glass racks and dust off the molds. It helps that sun is pouring through the windows and our Southwest desert is sparkling from a recent rain.
Glass Molds at Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Fusing Glass Molds
The dogs are basking in the sun on the concrete right outside the door, and I’m happy to be organizing something other than paperwork. I’ve primed the shelves and leaned them against the wall so they’re ready for service.
Kiln Shelves at Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Kiln Shelves at Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.

I found 2 bottle molds that will make great serving dishes out of the summer wine bottles.

Molds ready for firing at Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Bottle Molds for Fusing Wine Bottles
The colors and bold light of Autumn are making this winter’s possibilities, and surprises from the kiln . . . Exciting!!
Autumn Glass
Autumn
Autumn's Colors at Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Autumn’s Colors

Are you inspired by the sights and sounds of Autumn? We’d like to hear about your inspirations in the comments below.

Thanks.

Posted in Glass, In the shop., Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Copper and Wood-Walnut Table “Serenity”

When there’s a chill in the air, it reminds us it’s time to move indoors. But it doesn’t have to mean stale and stagnant. For those of us that love the sights and sounds of nature, there are so many ways to hold on to that sensation and bring it indoors. One of our favorite ways to do that is with furniture made of natural materials- copper and wood of course.
Black Walnut Table with Copper Water Feature
Black Walnut Coffee Table
We have a Black Walnut table created with sturdy driftwood legs that fits the bill. Mike made it with a small copper basin that pumps water gently over sandstone rocks. These could easily be replaced with smooth glass nuggets that would reflect the lights and add a whole new dimension to the piece.
Copper Water Feature in Black Walnut Table by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Copper Water Feature in Black Walnut Table
This table is 55″ long x 35″ wide x 16″ high- with plenty of room for your morning coffee and laptop, or you could put your feet up on it and relax to the sound of water in the evening.
Black Walnut Coffee Table with Copper Water Feature by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Black Walnut Coffee Table with Copper Water Feature

The natural Black Walnut slab is strong and holds its own story. The driftwood legs are like petrified wood but smoothed by the waves and time, and the copper basin was formed by hand to fit the table uniquely.

If you would like to add this piece of art to your own home furnishings, just let us know. We’d be glad to give you more information about this table.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

October Endings

Pallet Fence by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Pallet Fence Beginnings

It’s been a busy October. In our desert, it’s time to stay outside as much as possible. Mike built me a Pallet Fence in a bare area of our backyard for next spring and I’ve been hauling blocks from every corner of the yard for flower beds. I’m being watched- carefully.

Gate Keepers at Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Gate Keepers

I’ve finally gotten around to keeping these girls out of my vegetables and look what we have waiting.

Lettuce in the garden of Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Lettuce in October . . . yum.
Cabbage and marigolds at Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Cabbage in Abundance

And herbs drying in the kitchen.

Drying Herbs at Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Sage Drying in the Kitchen

There’s work to be done in the studio . . . and I try to balance my time between the two.

Stained Glass Pantry Door by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Stained Glass Pantry Door

There are projects to finish for my own remodel . . .

Fused Glass Cabinet Door by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Fused Glass Cabinet Door

And projects from long ago to revamp and bring back to life for our Etsy shop.

Fused Glass House Numbers by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Fused Glass House Numbers by Mike Dumas Copper Designs

But for now, I will enjoy the cooler days and join Guido in watching the bits of progress on our homefront.

Guido Watching the Garden at Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Loving the Cooler Weather

How do you spend the fall days on your homefront? Let us know in the comments below. 

Thanks.

Posted in In the shop. | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Copper Wind Sculpture and Turning 58!

Copper Wind Sculpture by Whitaker's Studio-A gift from Mike
Mike’s Gift to Me-Copper Wind Sculpture by Whitaker Studio
Birthdays ‘aint so bad when someone loves you enough to give you something that will last a lifetime, and then shares it with you.
Mike gave me a Double Helix Horizontal wind sculpture from Whitaker Studio and we are really enjoying it on these cool Fall days.
The sculpture moves so gracefully and smooth when it seems there is no breeze at all. It reminds me that God’s breath is always present in my life.
Wind and Water at Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Wind and Water at Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
This sculpture has a place next to our copper water feature that the birds love so much. I wrote about it here. Now when the winter freezes the fountain, and we have to shut it down, we will still have a focal point in our little entry-garden. I love so much to sit on the porch and just feel the sun and the fresh air.
Copper makes such a warm and beautiful accent to gardens, and Mike knows how much I love my gardens. What a great surprise this birthday brought.
Have you been given any copper art as a gift? Tell us about it in the comments below.
Thanks.
Posted in Collections | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dr. C’s Designs at the Western Design Conference 2014

Jim Ciaravella of Dr. C's Designs WDC 2014 by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Dr. James Ciaravella of Dr. C’s Designs WDC 2014

Dr. James Ciaravella retired as a heart surgeon in 2003. Jim’s story is interesting and inspiring. With a second home in Starr Valley, Wyoming, he and his wife were perusing the shops of Jackson Hole. He tells me his wife saw a mirror she admired- accented with a whimsical boot motif on the frame and Jim told her he could make one for her.

When a friend saw the mirror, he suggested that Jim should make more and gave him the name of a designer, in Jackson, to contact. Jim went to her store and noticed it was modern and contemporary, but he told the owner his friend said the boot mirrors were “hot right now”. Knowing Jim’s friend, and obviously respecting his expertise, the designer bought the two Jim had, and one he was working on. The mirrors sold well and he kept making them, each with a little different design.

Tooled Leather Stool and Paintings by Dr. C's Designs (photo Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.)
Tooled Leather Stool and Paintings by Dr. C’s Designs

Jim taught himself leather tooling and saddle-making techniques, and used those skills in his mirror frames. He began making belts and they sold well. Since then he has branched out into painting and sculpting-creating beautiful western art, and furniture, some whimsical and some traditional.

Belt Racks by Dr. C's Designs at WDC 2014 with Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Belt Racks by Dr. C’s Designs

His six gun and fishing rod-belt hooks and toilet paper holders got a lot of attention at the show we participated in recently. Dr. James Ciaravella, owner and curator of Dr. C’s Designs, is a gracious Southern gentleman, with a penchant for creating art. He has an astute business mind, and is eager to see other artists succeed. We were fortunate to share a space next to him at this year’s Western Design Conference.

Does your work inspire you to try your hand at new things? What have you added to your list lately? Tell us about it in the comments below.

Thanks.

Posted in In the Community, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chapman Design at Western Design Conference 2014

We enjoyed our participation in the Western Design Conference in Jackson, Wyoming this month. One of the best parts of the show is meeting the artists and learning about their work. I took the opportunity to interview just a few on the last day of the show, so I could share their stories here on our blog.
Chris Chapman of Chapman Design Inc. at Western Design Conference 2014 with Mike Dumas Copper Designs.
Chris Chapman-WDC 2014-with Mike Dumas Copper Designs.
Chris Chapman of Chapman Design Inc., is a leather artist living and working in Colorado. She has been a furniture maker for over 20 years. Chris says “I’ve always been a maker of things. When I was 5 years old my Scottish Grandfather gave me an antique sewing machine. . . . I began making historical clothing at 19.” Chris has travelled to Scottland and seen the land her ancestors lived on and worked from. This inspires many of the pieces she creates.
Detail of bonded leather work on Scottish Chest by Chris Chapman-Chapman Design Inc.
Detail of bonded leather work on Scottish Chest by Chris Chapman-Chapman Design Inc.
Chapman Design Inc.- Leather Wrapped Bar
Chapman Design Inc.- Leather Wrapped Bar
The leather bonding Chris works into her furniture is a style unique to her design. It’s done by building up layers of leather, then the raised pieces are wrapped and bonded, creating a relief of the image she is portraying. These images incorporate the historical styles of Classic Western, Native American, and Black Forest into many of Chris’s pieces.
Chapman Design 17th c. style Scottish Warriors Chest
Chapman Design 17th c. style Scottish Warriors Chest

This Scottish Chest has 400-500 hours of Chapman’s time alone in it, and another 100 hours from local artisans in the woodworking, ironwork and silversmithing trades. Many of her tools are homemade to create the look she is after. She also uses traditional saddle stamping tools.

Chris is a certified Verterinary Technician and says anatomy and physiology studies have added to the detail seen in the animals she includes in her leather designs; horses, deer and birds are just a few.

Interviewing Chris about the work she does taught me that she is very committed to her art, her love of history and animals, and the freedom of working in her craft to make a living. It was an honor to meet her, and get a close up look at the beautiful work her hands create.

You can learn more about Chris Chapman and the work she does at her website: chapmandesigninc.com

Do you collect historical styled furniture or art? Let us know how you display it in the comments below.
Thanks
Posted in In the Community | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Western Design Conference 2014

Grand Tetons View
Teton Passion

I love a road trip, and we recently made a wind through the backroads to The Western Design Conference in Jackson, Wyoming.

Mike Dumas Copper Designs at the Western Design Conference 2014
Western Design Conference 2014- Jackson, Wyoming- Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.

The show this year was encouraging and inspirational, as well as just plain fun.

Mike did a beautiful job of designing and finishing our Vintage Rustic light sconce. It is a heavy gauged copper, glass and mica wall sconce in the Craftsman style. The warm colors of the glass are framed by hand hammered copper bands and set off by the soft glow of silver mica insets. This light is one we can imagine in a set, lining the walls of a home theater, softly lighting a hallway, or welcoming visitors as an entry light in a covered area.

Copper, Glass, and Mica Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Copper, Glass, and Mica Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.

It measures 28″ high with a 12″ width at the top and tapering to 9 1/2″ at the bottom, but it could be duplicated in a smaller form.

Vintage Rustic Copper Light Sconce by Mike and Julie Dumas-Mike Dumas Copper Designs- Western Design Conference 2014
Vintage Rustic Copper Light Sconce by Mike and Julie Dumas-Mike Dumas Copper Designs- Western Design Conference 2014

We juried this piece and were situated with a couple of other lighting pieces that were equally beautiful; a stained glass and wood floor lamp and an antler chandelier. We would like to suggest that the conference include a lighting category in the future; there are so many options for materials.

We connected with old friends and made new ones at this conference, found ourselves awed each day by something new we experienced in the talent at the show, and admired the skills of so many artisans and craftsmen. Mike’s wheels are already turning on the next project he will design if we return next year.

Breathtaking View of the Tetons from Breakfast Table. by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
View of the Tetons from the breakfast table.

We enjoyed our stay with friends from our desert, who summer in Jackson-their long time home. And who wouldn’t find this view refreshing?

Has your summer inspired new ideas for home décor projects you’re ready to begin? Please tell us about them in the comments below.

Posted in In the Community, In the shop. | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Copper Lighting in the Making

Copper Pocket Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Copper Pocket Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.

The beautiful copper light sconces Mike is making in the shop these days, never stop surprising me. The colors he brings out with heat and his original hand textures are always unique and captivating.

Dark Slate Copper Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Dark Slate Copper Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.

Some of the lights are dramatic, reflecting the bold colors of the desert and the deep textures of the surrounding rocks.

Rectangular Copper Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Rectangular Copper Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.

Others are simple- calming and soothing. They accent their surroundings with an uncomplicated presence.

Silver Moon Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Silver Moon Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.

Some are whimsical . . .

Copper Leaves on Glass Light Sconce by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Copper Leaves on Glass Light by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.

Some are realistic . . .

Corrugated Copper Light Sconces by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Corrugated Copper Light Sconces by Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.

And some are practical.

 

Mike Creating Backs for Copper Light Sconce-Mike Dumas Copper Designs Inc.
Mike Creating Backs for Copper Light Sconce

All are one of a kind, made by two people who appreciate the freedom to “live a simple life, working with our hands, and minding our own business.”

What is your favorite material for lighting? Do you like the combination of copper and glass? Let us know in the comments below.

Thanks

Posted in In the shop. | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Western Art

The West is known for its simple and rustic flavor. Bringing the outside in, and the inside out is the way of the West.

Whole rooms are created without walls just to savor the fresh air and draw in the night sky, like this one by Lesa Loves Rocks.

OUtdoor Space by Lesa Rocks
Outdoor Space by Lesa Loves Rocks

Elements of wood and stone are brought indoors and turned into unusual and practical furnishings.

Serenity Table-Black Walnut with Water Feature by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Serenity Table-Black Walnut with Water Feature

But to me, the most interesting flair of the West is the accents we use to embellish our homes and community spaces.

Recycled Copper Sign by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Recycled Copper Art

We use old signs, recycled and embellished, and sometimes left as is.

We can’t get enough of rusty things to hang on our walls.

We use antlers and skulls from cattle and buffalo to create focal points and frame artwork.

Copper Buffalo Skull by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Copper Buffalo Skull
Antler and Copper Candelabra by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Antler and Copper Candelabra
Apricot Tree Antlers on Resin Skull by Mike Dumas Copper Designs
Apricot Tree Antlers on Resin Skull

Symbols of the enduring hard edges of a rough environment. Reminders of the resiliency of the inhabitants.

Next month, from September 4-7, will mark the 22nd annual Western Design Conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and we will be participating artists there. We look forward to seeing the incredible pieces of art that represent the West-old and new.

What is your favorite piece of Western Art? Do you mix it up with other styles in your home? Let us know in the comments below. Thanks.

 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Posted in In the Community, In the shop., Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment