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Archive for September, 2012

We at the Bead Bazaar love supporting our local artists, beaders an bead-makers alike. Every day introduces us to new people, and when we saw the work of Joe Skar, we were hooked! Joe and his wife work together to make and sell Skar Art; Joe makes beautiful pendants and sculptural pieces while his wife makes small jars and vessels. Joe’s ethereal lampwork glass has won us over, so we wanted to share it with you! Skar Art Pendants will be available for sale at the Bellingham Bead Bazaar while we feature him as our September Artist of the month. Read on to learn more about this amazing artist.

Skar Art Glass, Bellingham local glass artist Skar Art Glass, Bellingham local glass artist Skar Art Glass, Bellingham local glass artist

What kind of glass work do you do?
A: I make lampwork glass, though a more modern term for the technique is “flamework”. Lampwork glass got it’s name because it was originally done using the flame of an oil lamp and a bellows. My pieces are made using a torch mounted to my desk.

Q: How long have you been making jewelry?
A: I began leaning how to make glass in 2001 and started really focusing on my work in 2005. I’ve gotten to observe other artists, but for the most part I’m self-taught from books, DVDs, YouTube videos, etc.

Q: How did Skar Art get started?
A: In 2008 my wife and I got our own studio. We started making more glass and selling at the Ferndale Farmer’s Market. We got our business license, and since then it’s just taken off.

Q: How did you come up with the name for your business?
A: It was a tough decision, so I put the question out on Facebook! Our original name, Skar Artworks, was the suggestion I liked the best. Since then we’ve shortened the name of our business to Skar Art. Skar is my last name, but I like to joke about having a couple of scars from making the glass.

Q: How would you describe your style?
A: In glass art terminology, I do contemporary borosilicate. That’s the kind of glass I work with. For style, I’m inspired a lot by the Pacific Northwest environment and aquatic things. I’m really into fish and like going to the aquarium. I’ve recently been working on more sculptural stuff: octopi, fish, and aquatic scenes.

Q: What inspires you?
A: Aside from the Pacific Northwest I’m inspired by my family, my daughter and wife. I’m driven by thinking about them. It keeps me going.

Q: Has anyone been an influence to your work?
A: I went to a 2012 glass art convention in Las Vegas and got to meet and see a lot of different artists, including Milon Townsend. We have different styles, but I was inspired by what he is able to do, the direction he had taken with the glass. It showed me just what I can do with it and that you don’t have to follow a pre-existing path; you can do what you want with it.

Q: What other hobbies or activities do you have in your life?
A: My wife and I both love going down to the bay or Seattle and taking pictures. We’re not professionals by a long shot, we just love doing it. I’ve always been into video production and like to make ambient videos. Another passion I have is music. I’m the drummer for a band called Animal Inside. We recently played the Cabin Tavern.

Q: Do you have any hopes or ambitions for Skar Art in the future?
A: I have too many to count! The big one I want is to find a location for a public studio for people to watch or take lessons, maybe with a gallery out in front. While we’ll be focusing more on getting stuff into stores, I don’t want to saturate the market. I also want to develop more of an online presence.

Thank you, Joe, for allowing us to interview you! Make sure to check out their Facebook page, where Joe Skar posts photos of his new work and takes special orders. You can also view their website: www.skarart.com

Skar Art glass can be found at Hammonds gallery of gifts in Barkley Village. Skar Art will be selling their work at the second annual Bellwether Jazz Festival on Saturday, September 8th, and at the Allied Arts Holiday Festival of the Arts. The Allied Arts show will run from November 16th to December 24th, 2012.

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