My Books

My Books
These books may be purchased from Schiffer Publishing, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Walmart, Target and in many other fine stores.

Check out my design on Zazzle!

Friday, December 31, 2010

Thanks to the All Fairlington Bulletin for the Nice Article on my Park Sculptures

New Year 2011 Resolutions for Artists

It's time to set your artist goals for 2011! Some things to keep in mind when setting goals:

1.) If something has not been working for you, don't be afraid to say "bye bye."

2.) Keep multiple lines of opportunities open while you always continue to explore what is new on the horizon.

3.) Take a class in your medium or outside of your specialty if you have not taken one for a while.

4.) Know you medium and the level of work that is out there. For example, if you are a photographer, spend at least 2 hours a month looking at other photography work and not just from the iconic photographers. Know what distinguishes a poor photo from an average photo or an average photo from a great photo.

5.) Maintain integrity in yourself and your art work.

6.) If you have provided others art opportunities and/or advice and it has not been reciprocated and/or appreciated, remember that next time.

7.) It is great to be supportive of others work but you are your number one client. I have had several new artists ask me about forming "alliances" for promotion and I assume they mean informal agreements. While informal personal alliances (I promise to tell everyone you are a great artist and promote your work as long as you ALWAYS say the same thing about me for every breath I take) may help beginning artists, they can be risky and difficult to manage.  Often long term they typically tend to profit the more experienced "top dog" (or two) in the group who has the balance of power. Never aim to ride anyone's coattails.

8.) Don't play counselor to wannabe artists who tell you they do not want to work hard or learn things the right way.

9.) I am not a big fan of art sites that recommend you establish fixed numerical goals such as "contact ten art consultants in a month".  If you contact one and get a "no" response, pursue a different opportunity in another direction for a few months (i.e. another juried show) vs. a robotic mentality of "next."

10.) If you are having success, you are bound to receive an occasional catty comment. Ignore the trolls. It just confirms you are doing well.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Recycled Bottle Lamp Kit

I came across this bottle lamp kit on the website  It comes with a battery operated string of LED lights and a shade for £13.95 (around $ 21.50 US currency) but you supply the bottle. Although I commend any product which encourages reuse of a bottle, you might be able to find your own lights and small lampshade of your choice for the same price or less.

Click here for more details on this kit.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Recycled "Granada" Glasses at Crate & Barrel

I love these glasses with the multicolor swirls in the middle. Each glass is one of a kind and the slight imperfections in recycled glass (bubbles, etc.) really make them standouts! I believe recycled glass seems to push its creators to always go the extra design mile even for everyday utilitarian objects.
Click here to view additional details.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Too Much Recycled Glass?

An interesting article showing the successful attempts in collecting glass to recycle yet the economy is causing a slowdown in creating and selling the new recycled glass products.

"Too Much Recycled Glass"  by: Dan Springer

"Americans are doing a better job of recycling all the time. Unfortunately, when it comes to glass there are still major challenges. Recyclers have been going out of business and many of those still hanging on are seeing their piles grow out of control."

"Concrete Recyclers in Tumwater, Washington has a stack of crushed glass that's 8,000 tons and getting bigger. They may have to stop taking recycled glass diverting it instead to landfills. The problem is the slow economy. The company crushes glass into a sandy mixture and then sells it to construction companies who use it as building fill serving the same purpose as sand or pea gravel."

"The slow construction industry, low cost of sand and skepticism about the crushed glass among construction engineers have all hurt glass recyclers."

"When the economy improves there should be a better market for recycled glass. More building and more buying will help. Meantime, despite good intentions, some of the recycled glass you leave at the curbside may end up at the landfill anyway."

Click here for the full story.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Artist Barry Lafler Creates Art Using a Bottle and a Propane Torch

I am looking forward to getting a small propane torch and trying this in my backyard this summer.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas to All!

Three cast recycled glass trees.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Painting Bottles

I tend to highlight mostly warm and some hot glass issues in this blog but wanted to share an interesting video on a cold application for recycled glass bottles. Peruvian artist Josue Villanueva paints beautiful warm designs on these recycled tequilla bottles.

In this video, artist Carol Z. uses paints with a translucent quality and inserts lights into the bottles.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

More Art Email Scams and Just in Time for the Holidays!!!

Although the writing skills of this scammer have improved AND he actually looked at my website this time, somehow I do not think I will be accepting his Mastercard.

Feel free to send your personal Seasons Greetings to Mr. Peter Williams at

I have visited your website and i am very impressed by the wonderful pieces you have on display. I will like to buy this piece:

Liquid Bullseye

I will like to know how much this costs and the shipping cost to this address 89 King Fahad Estate Riyadh Saudi Arabia Zip Code 11564 and also if you accept mastercard as a method of payment.

Kindly get back to me asap.


Peter Williams

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

My "Winter Glass Trellis and Snow" Photo Was Selected by

If you have seen the small LCD screens in many elevators around the Washington, DC area, they are likely part of the Captivate Network. "Captivate Network is a media solutions company. Its digital programming and advertising network informs and entertains business professionals at work." Their mission: "to engage and connect our viewers to the outside world while they are at work."

The photo below will be running on the network on Christmas Eve morning.

Click here to see the photo in Captivate's online gallery.

More Ways on How to Cut Bottles

This question pops up often and there are multiple ways to cut a bottle. I have used masking tape with a dremel cutting tool and hot water and have also used the diamond blade in my wet tile saw.

The website at  goes into great detail with many photos on the six methods one can use to cut bottles.  This site is worth a visit by all recycled glass artists.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Nulife Glass' Unique Solution to CRT Recycling

Nulife Glass in Irlam, England has developed a unique solution to separate the lead (Pb) from the leaded glass structure in cathode ray tubes (CRTs), which are found in televisions and computer monitors.

Why is this important?  According to their website at
"There are three main aspects to consider: the effects of lead, new legislation and increasing volume of waste."

"The dangerous impact of lead poisoning on the human body, especially on the nervous system, and on our environment is well documented. It is presently banned in fuel, paint and pipes and more recently on all new electronics under the new RoHS Directive."

"CRTs contain leaded glass and in landfill the acidic nature of ground water accelerates lead to leach into watercourses. The lead content in the glass of a CRT can be as high as 20%, which means a single 34” television could contain more than 1kg of lead."

"In a bid to fight this problem new European legislation classifies the television and computer screen as Hazardous Waste. Under the new Landfill Directive, CRTs cannot be disposed of in ordinary waste landfill. Added to this, the WEEE Directive makes it obligatory to recycle our electronic waste from 1st July 2007."

"In the UK alone, a conservative estimate suggests there are approximately 60 million TV sets and 40 million computer screens. The sheer volume of waste we are creating, combined with the new legislation, ensures our process is essential in the UK’s fight to safely and easily recycle leaded glass. Globally there are at least 1.9 billion CRTs still in use."

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Recycled Glass Bottle Wall in Arlington Restaurant

A friend and I were having lunch recently at the new restaurant Rustico near the Ballston Commons Mall in Arlington and noticed the use of recycled glass bottles in their decor. The photo below shows bottles that were cut in half lengthwise and epoxied and grouted to the wall near the inside front of the restaurant.  Small pieces of mirror glass surround the bottles. It was great to see this use of recycled glass in their wall sculpture. There is also a chandelier using glass bottles in the back of the restaurant. The food and service is great as well.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Best Social Media for Artists: LinkedIn or Facebook? It Depends!

LinkedIn has numerous art related groups you can join from general all media ones such as the "Art Collecting Network" and the "Professional Fine Artist" group to groups specific to different mediums such as the "Glass Art Society" for glass artists. Some of the recent discussion topics in the professional fine artist group have ranged from "what is the last artwork you sold" to the age old discussion of "craft vs. art." Anyone whom is a member of these groups is permitted to start a topic of discussion or post a response to a topic.

 I have found the responses to the topics tend to be well thought out, more detailed than the discussions in Facebook and offer a variety of useful information.  The discussions may last for weeks or months and you can receive an email notice for each posted response. If you have a busy schedule, LinkedIn groups may be for you since the topic discussions are open for extended periods. The one negative part, as in any social media, is that on occasion I will see an alleged "art consultant" type try to take advantage of a new artist by saying "send me $10 and I will post your images to my website and you will gains lots of exposure!"  Before you take advice from any "experienced" artist or arts professional, it is wise to check out their websites and credentials first. If someone is giving advice on juried shows and they have no first hand experience in juried shows, obtain your advice elsewhere.

Facebook is geared towards more real time responses and shorter discussions. I am signed up to numerous art groups and magazines and museums and the information they post , while useful and interesting, is often more of an educational or PR outreach vs. a multiple party esoteric arts conversation. However, if you have a book or special event coming up, creating a Facebook group on the topic can be useful for publicity reasons. So both social medias can offer advantages for artists.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Colorful Recycled Glass Tumblers

I came across these colorful tumblers on  The comments on purchased recycled glass products are always interesting to read since many consumers are still surprised that recycled glass is not clear and it will often have a greenish cast to it.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Success For An Artist: A Two Way Street

I recently entered an online call to artists for photos by a well known magazine and was surprised to see a posted comment where an "artist" asked "what is in this for me?"  One of the ways that new artists can ruin their career before it starts is by failing to do their homework and viewing themselves as a "famous" artists when they have no credentials. Any other artist, established or emerging, would have been thrilled with this potential opportunity to have photos in this magazine.  In addition, there were no entry fees and it took about 30 seconds or less to enter the competition. This person came across as looking unprofessional and unprepared. 

 I have stressed that if you wish to be a professional artist, you do not give away your time and art for free, and you should never let anyone make unreasonable demands on your time.  However, when potential opportunities arise that are implicitly high visibility with no costs and a few seconds of work, you need to reevaluate your attitude as to what your role is here as well.

Likewise when opportunities arise to be in an art related book by well known publishers, your role should not end once your photos are accepted and the book is published.  I am in a recently published book on art glass yet I have seen only a handful of artists in the book even bother to list this event on their artist websites.  In my situation, I not only listed this new book on my blog and artist website, I provided multiple links from sources where it could be ordered. I also emailed the information on this book to my contact list and promoted it in a number of social media forums (facebook, linkedin, etc). If you have your art work featured in a book that does well, you benefit as an artist.  Your name does not need to be on the book as a publisher or author in order to take some responsibility for advertising the book. Artists who turn around and complain that being in a book did nothing for them have no one other than themselves to blame if they have not done any work to promote the book.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

A Paint Color Called Recycled Glass!

Did you know that Sherwin Williams has an interior/exterior paint color called "Recycled Glass?"  It is in the green color family. See more information on this sage green paint color by clicking here.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Colors Red And Green

The Colors Red And Green are associated with the Christmas Holiday but do you know why?

    The best explanation from is the following:
 "The color green is a natural representation of eternal life,   specifically the evergreen tree and how it survives through the winter season. That's why, in Christian belief, green represents the eternal life of Jesus Christ. The color red symbolizes Christ's blood which was shed during his crucifixion."

Sunday, December 5, 2010

How Glass Ornaments Are Made.

Since Christmas is not far off, I thought I would share this interesting video.