To help all of us non-glass artists better understand the industry, evolution and art and science behind how our pipes, bubblers and bongs are made we’ve asked one of Colorado’s most prominent and best-known artists to take on a quasi-regular column we’d like to call: Glass Class.
This week, it’s the second half of our introduction from glass guru Scott “Trikky” Saed. He’s a humble guy with a lot of talent, but he’s always looking to learn and explore glassblowing more and spread knowledge and skill to the growing world of new-school American glassblowers and pipe makers. Enough of our flattery, we’ll let Saed introduce himself:
By the time I made it to California, I was pretty amped up about the possibility of becoming a glass blower. It had been quite some time since I had been excited for any sort of “job.” Though this is hardly what I considered a “job.” When I arrived in Berkley, I was thrown right work the first day I walked in. I lived in a one-bedroom apartment with my dog, Taja for the next six months that followed.
The apprenticeship lasted almost exactly two and a half months. I left, along with a very good friend of mine I had made while working there, who goes under the name Dosa Glass. We left the only studio we had known and decided that the best idea now that we both had our own torches to work on was to build a studio at his house, deep in the Redwood forests of Marin County. Eventually, my lease was up on my one bedroom apartment, and I was able to find a room with some random hippies only a couple miles from Dosa’s place.
We built our studio out of an old carport. It was basically a steel skeleton, with a roof, no sides, and no infrastructure. Dosa and I scraped together what little funds we had, and managed to purchase enough corrugated sheet metal to cover two of the four sides of the structure, and figured we’d supplement the third side with a large tarp. We ran out of money, so the fourth side we left totally open, opting to have our torches blowing out that end, as we had no money for ventilation at all.
Dosa and I made life really good for each other during those times. His whole family was very supportive of me, and often brought me into their home and treated me as a member of the house. I can’t relate how much I appreciated that after almost a year away from my friends and family.
There came a point in my studies as a burgeoning glassblower that I felt I wanted to take my skills somewhere less remote, and potentially see some friends and family as well. I decided I would move back to my hometown of Atlanta, GA, and build a temporary studio at my folks’ house while I found a place to live and a more permanent studio situation.
I figured that since the South was pretty well devoid of any glass pipe makers that I knew personally, it would be quite some time until I would be able to learn anything new from someone better than myself.
I knew I needed a one-on-one lesson from someone who could really show me some new things to work on over the long run back home. I asked Dosa who he suggested, and he linked me up with Eusheen (Eush) Goines. I contacted Goines and we set up some time for me to come learn.
My plan was to spend some time with Goines working on some slightly more advanced techniques than the ones I currently knew, such as full-color bubblers, linework patterns, and prep. The lesson was planned for three days and in that time I watched Eusheen make a KILLER Grateful Dead themed bubbler, and he in turn helped me make a miniature heady bubbler of my own. I know he recognized my desire to be better than I was, because at the end of what turned into a five-day lesson, he asked me to stay, and learn from him and all the shop mates he had working around him.
Read part one of Saed’s introduction here and check back in two weeks for more on glassblowing from Saed.