Today our guest is Lori Lochner - a lampwork artist with a flair for gorgeous color combinations and abstract designs. Her elaborate focal pieces like feathers, birds, and decorative glass shells are wonderful to behold.
Inspirational Beading: How did you first get started with lampwork?
Lori: I bought my first beadmaking kit in 1995. It was a "hot-head" type torch and some crude glass in a little zip lock bag. What a horrible experience. I managed to make some lumpy beads and put the kit away. In 1996 I decided to take the plunge and buy a complete set up and start right. I bought a minor torch, a large selection of glass and tools. At the time I was seriously into glass fusing and was a silversmith.
Inspirational Beading: Do you remember your first bead? Where is it today?
Lori: Yes, it was a lumpy black and white dot bead. I believe it threw it in my flower garden.
Inspirational Beading: Where do you look for inspiration?
Lori: I'm inspired by nature and organic forms. I adore flowers, pods, and sea creatures. I strive to mimic the subtle colorations and symmetry of the natural world. Pinterest also provides some wonderful eye candy when I'm seeking inspiration. My feed is heavy in the jewelry, textile and tribal crafts genre. Intricate patterning of tribal basketry, beadwork, jewelry and textiles in infinitely fascinating!
Inspirational Beading: What is your favorite color or combination to work with?
Lori: Tough to nail down a favorite combination... I like to mix cool and warm colorations in my work to provide designers with flexibility when creating. A subtle addition of metallic and sparkle lends depth to a piece as well. Also matte and shiny. My work seems to be purple heavy.
Inspirational Beading: Do you have a favorite bead style or shape to create?
Lori: I really enjoy "off mandrel" work. In soft glass and especially in borosilicate glass. Hollow forms are fascinating in that they allow another dimension of "light-play" from within the form. When working with larger forms hollow work lends itself to better wearability.
Inspirational Beading: What is the most interesting thing about your design process?
Lori: I'm never without a sketch book. I have a little one in my purse and a simple composition notebook in the studio. Every morning I jot down the days production schedule and make drawings and notes of things I would like to accomplish at the torch. I also jot down music, books, ideas and inspirations while I'm working. Being an full time artist/craftsperson is such a solitary experience. I subscribe to many podcasts that keep me entertained while working.
Inspirational Beading: What is the most exciting design in your shop right now? What makes it special?
Lori: Right now I'm working on some functional pieces. Goblets and bowls mainly, although I haven't listed them in my web store. In my Etsy shop I think my sea-forms
are a favorite. Each one is special and unique. When using borosilicate glass there is so much serendipity in the way the colors strike in the kiln.
Inspirational Beading: Do you have any plans for new bead styles or themes in the works?
Lori: Recently I have been creating some feathers and they seem to be well received. When my production work is done for the day I follow my muse and create something unique usually from an idea that has been floating nebulously in my mind.
Lori also carries a fantastic selection of designer Czech glass in her Etsy shop. You can get updates on her latest creations on Facebook.
Copyright 2013 Inspirational Beading and Lori Lochner
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