Welcome to our next exciting post of #meetthemaker this month! Twice Fired Glass creations are crafted by up-and-coming glass artist Kate Park. Based in Leeds, the Twice Fired studio designs and produces exquisite contemporary handmade glass art inspired by the stunning Yorkshire landscape. Using the highest quality hand rolled kiln-glass, sheets are cut, assembled and cast, each one cold worked and fused in the kiln to create individually unique designs. We caught up with Kate to see more about how she makes her work.
1. Could you tell us a little bit about you, and how you came to start your business?
I am Kate Park from Twice Fired. I moved to Leeds to do my fine art degree and fell in love with the city. Twice Fired is my second career as I was a secondary school teacher for 18 years. I loved my job and working with children was so rewarding, but when my youngest of three children started school I started to make my own work again. Within a year Twice Fired took off and needed me full time. I will have been full time at Twice Fired for two years in September and employ another full time person.
2. How long have you been living in Leeds? How does where you work inspire you?
I’ve lived in Leeds for 36 years. A creative hub and home to the inspirational natural surrounding landscape that is Yorkshire.
3. Where does your inspiration come from?
Inspired by naturally occurring art forms – nature’s wealth of beauty is explored. From the tiniest, delicate seed pod or iridescent gloss of a beetle to the elegant formations of birds, each glass piece capturing subtle tones, textures and intricate shapes – hidden gems revealing themselves as the light changes.
4. When you are not creating, what do you do?
I hang out with my family, friends, including the cats and chickens! The studio is set in half an acre, so we love lighting the pizza oven and chatting the night away. I also have a bit of wanderlust and find an excuse to travel.
5. What’s your favourite current piece?
I love the migration range that I make – it was the first range I developed when I went full time so it holds a lot of memories for me. It reflects my hopes and aspirations for becoming a full time maker and mum. The slate grey and cobalt blue are such fabulous colours to work with.
6. What is the most challenging aspect of your work?
Kiln space! I have two kilns and would love a third!
7. If you had one piece of advice to give other makers, what would it be?
Plan it, do it. If you don’t, no-one else is going to do it for you.
8. Are there any particular artists or sculptors that inspire you?
So many, one of the reasons I moved to Leeds was because of the connection with Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth. I love being so close to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and The Hepworth in Wakefield.
9. Describe your work in 3 words!
Glass, colourful, tactile.
10. Without giving away any state secrets, what’s next on your design agenda?
I am very excited about a new range I have designed. It uses different techniques than I have worked with before. I have developed some hand illustrations into screen prints and incorporated layers within the glass. I also have some more large scale free standing sculptures I am experimenting with. So many ideas, more time needed!
Sounds good to us – we can’t wait to see what Twice Fired does next! See more of Kate’s fabulous work here.
… Let us know what you think of Twice Fired by leaving a comment below, and stay tuned for future posts on more of our wonderful artists.