My wife and I built Tsuga Studios in 2000 where she grew up in Chester Vermont. We worked on our timber frame for nearly two years building glass and pottery studios, a gallery space and an upstairs apartment in which to live. I worked in this space for about seventeen years developing my skills and my markets through wholesale, retail, internet and gallery representations. This studio served me well for nearly two decades, inspiring me to make one-of-a-kind and production art glass, to hone my abilities and develop my market while also raising a family.
In September of 2017 I had a studio fire rendering my glass shop unusable and damaging my equipment. Thankfully, no one was hurt, the building was not a total loss but I needed to make a choice of how and where to rebuild. In 2005 a friend and colleague built a glass shop with an electric furnace and ovens in nearby Bellows Falls, VT where hydroelectric energy is provided by a nearby dam on the Connecticut River. With a vacancy in the same building, I could see the potential of what that renewable energy could produce and the creative community that could be fostered and grown by moving there. I was inspired by the idea of a hot glass studio for the future, one that melts using modern technology in a responsible and sustainable manner.
Motivated to make opportunity out of misfortune, I have begun the process of transforming the blank canvas of the new space into a functional glass shop and gallery location. It needed walls, sheet rock, paint, fresh water plumbing and drains, gas line, hooded ventilation and another 200 AMP service to run an electric furnace. Some of my old equipment can be repaired and re-purposed for the new space but a big expense in this move is the cost of an electric glass furnace and other electric equipment that will allow me to fully leverage the renewable, hydroelectric power available in the rented space. I love what I do as I’ve done it in the past. But if I could produce my glasswork more responsibly and sustainably using green, renewable energy, while also participating in the growing creative community of Bellows Falls, I see more clearly an exciting and long-term path for my glasswork and my future career.
This is where you come in. In order to cover the cost of the remaining equipment and with the hopes that you will help me to reach my goal, I have created this project and designed these exciting and popular rewards from which to choose. After much contemplation, I know I can rebuild and face this new chapter in my career. I am also equally excited that with this Kickstarter campaign, I have an opportunity to bring my community and friends into the process of helping me to rebuild. I look forward to making these rewards as they help to fulfill my dream of building a shop that runs on renewable energy.
Here are the rewards:
Because the actual awards don’t yet exist, these photographs are prototypes of the glass pieces available, giving you an idea of what you will receive. Some of these rewards are available in a variety of colors, which you will select from a survey at the conclusion of my campaign. Please be sure to provide me with your best contact information when you select your reward so I can be sure to make the pieces to your preference.
If you would like more than one of the reward items (either multiple of one level or multiple reward items) simply select one of the items as your pledge, pledge the combined total amount of the items you'd like to receive—send us a message letting us know and we can certainly make that happen. Thank you for helping to support our goal!
Risks and challenges
Of course there are risks that may be associated with this project. I expect there could be some difficulty in getting the glass equipment to function properly, or an unforeseen difficulty with getting the glass rewards made on time. To my advantage though, I previously worked for HUB Consolidated building glass equipment and my project and goals have been informed by the fact that I have built several glass studios in the past. For additional support, I've also hired HUB to build and install the new electric furnace. I also understand that a balance between making rewards and filling current orders will need to be found. I expect to be in active communication with any supporters throughout the process and if I get behind, adjustments will be made in my production schedule. While I cannot control all outcomes, I'm confident that with my more than twenty years of experience in the glass making industry and with the technical help from my collaborators (HUB Consolidated, employees, friends, family and community), we can minimize the risks and overcome any challenges if they arise.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)