It was about 5/6 years ago now? Wow–that Phil Valencia got one of the first Dragons from Mobile Glass Blowing Studios (MGBS). Their furnaces really let you go anywhere and blow some glass, I’ve been wanting my own since! In January of 2022, I picked up my Mini Dragon #070 from MGBS and took it straight to Love Burn in Miami where I did an interactive art project. While I was blowing glass, people would come up and talk about things, eventually leading me to make something that represents that conversation. It was a wonderful experience where I gifted that person the art if they came back the next day to pick it up.
It’s now been 9 months and we taken the dragon from Florida all the way to California. Caroline and I are now on the way to Carlsbad, New Mexico for Cavern City Renaissance Festival. I’ve gotten to blow glass at 0ft through 7,700ft elevation near Gunnison, Colorado. Experiencing the changes and effects of how much more gas and time is required to heat up the dragon as we go up. Even getting it lit required more gas. How the humidity, or lack thereof also affects combustion. All while battling the never ending fight against rust because the equipment lives outdoors. Traveling through rough terrain with all of it in the back of a one ton truck, maintaining and keeping it working–the dragon prevails. Under canopies, it’s mostly protected, except for condensation. Having to lubricate any areas exposed and repainting others, it’s a worthy battle to keep such top quality equipment up to shape.
We made protest candles while in Texas to speak out towards the removal of women’s reproductive rights. Creating pregnant belly shaped candles filled with red wax to represent the amount of lives that will be lost due to lack of emergency care during pregnancies–amongst many other wrongs in these decisions. As the wax heats up, it becomes deep red, flowing like the blood unnecessarily spilled due to lack of proper medical access. We drove those creations to the center of the city looking for protests which were scheduled only to find most people out partying. Walking around as though their very liberties aren’t at risk. Most people just don’t care or don’t think they can do anything. When our choices are removed, it is our duty to express the importance of honoring our liberties for all people. Our freedom of expression is an important value we hold and one that should be shared amongst all, not just the privileged.
One of my favorite events so far was at Luvin Arms Animal Sanctuary in Erie, Colorado where we did demonstrations and also gifted them a unique pig tail vase created during that demo for their auction. It was a wonderful experience where we got to meet a caring and hard working community that truly inspired us. Having previously been vegetarian, Caroline and I have both been vegan since attending the Mountain ExtraVeganZa that was hosted by Luvin Arms and Piante Pizza. Inspired by their message of treating all animals with love, recognizing how our dairy industry treats cows, and how chicken farms squeeze these animals into a shed filled with their own feces. Also, if you haven’t eaten at Piante Pizzaria while in Breckenridge, Colorado than you are missing out. Absolutely amazing. My mouth is watering just thinking about it!
As we head to New Mexico, we are in production mode. Creating as much inventory for our upcoming festivals as we can. Everything from cups, vases, jewelry from recycled glass, and now we will also be adding pumpkins as the seasons turn color. The dragon allows for a great versatility that we aim to explore. Leading up to Love Burn, 2023, we will be working on our installation piece that will take everything a bit further. Working towards the eventual goal of “The Beast”, we are creating parts of our installation that will ideally live at Virginia Key Beach. We will be making a post about this in the upcoming weeks as we turn our focus from production of functional work to this sculptural installation. We are still in the planning stages of the interior elements and then we will be seeking funding for our projects! You can donate for the creation of the beast by going here! All donations go straight towards the creation of this installation work. Make sure to follow along for more information on our projects and creations.
We will be putting out a video soon about glassblowing because I’ve realized we have so much glass footage I have not released yet. Make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel to be notified when it’s out!