Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 wrapped

2009 was definitely a whirlwind. I think the biggest change for me in 2009 was the recent surge of mosaic and a TEMPORARY lull in fusing. The last big thing I kilnformed was this sink for my powder room. I have two mosaics that I am just starting and if I had the space, I would have three going on simultaneously. I have also started working with recycled glass and am anxious to see where that leads. I think what makes mosaic so appealing to me is that I can combine fused, recycled and purchased glass. More options! More colors! I can't wait to see what 2010 brings.

Friday, December 25, 2009

2009 was good to me!

My son has a WONDERFUL girlfriend. This is her dog, least how I see Tink. She comes over to you and looks at you with eyes that tell you exactly what she wants. When you go to pet her, she flops over on her back so you will scratch her belly. She looks like a little kid in pajamas. There's a ton of personality packed into this eight year old, ten pound pup!
I hope everyone reading this had a Christmas as good as mine. How did it work out that all the nicest people in the world just happened to be MY friends or family? I am truly blessed, and expecting that 2010 will be even better.

Monday, December 7, 2009


I have been working on this 8x10 for quite some time. And it has been stored in my brain for even longer. Of course it is another excuse to work in blue. Most of the iris is done in transparent glass so it really moves and sparkles when you see it in person. The lashes were crazy hard to cut but then even harder to work around! I think the next work on the "drawing board" is also mosaic. Before that, I have to reassemble my bathroom that I tore apart, and Christmas needs to fit it somewhere.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

jungle flowers

I have said all along that I have no preference between mosaic and fused glass. I usually choose the application which would best illustrate what I am trying to get out. But lately all I think about is mosaic. The piece I am working on right now is mosaic-and the next two things that are lined up in my brain are both mosaic too. The latest mosaics I have done all have different thickness of glass so that some parts appear on the surface, while some seem deeper inside the work-sort of dimensional. Yet, the surface is flush.
A really cool thing happened last week. My cousin wrote to me and told me that her grade school daughter wanted to dress up as a glass artist for career day! AND...I got the "Student's Choice Award at the PaGuild's show this past weekend! Woop woop! Life is good.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

now THIS is how you change a tire!

A picture is worth a thousand words. You might call it a bad day when your wheel falls off first thing in the morning but I am gonna tell you just how lucky I am! I was only about two miles from home and I started hearing a weird sound. I got out and looked underneath but saw nothing. I figured it would be best to head back home. It got worse fast so I decided to pull off the road. The second I got off the road, the van dropped! I got out and the wheel was laying beside me. I was LUCKY enough to have lost it while I was safely stopped. I couldn't get the jack under the axle and the jack is too short to be effective anywhere else. I saw a woman outside and asked if she had a jack so I could jack the thing up enough to get my own jack under the axle. I figured I could do this faster than AAA. LUCKILY she did not have a jack because she directed me to a neighbor's house. The neighbor just happened to have a handy little gadget (shown in photo) to pick up my van. Lucky for me, he also had a little tool to rethread the bolts that the errant tire stripped. So many things worked out. My daughter was home and could pick me up from the garage. I think the biggest thing I am glad for is that it didn't happen an hour earlier or later when I was on a 4 lane highway! I guess a good day depends on how you look at it

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

my new baby

I had already posted a link to my youtube video on facebook but am just now writing about it in my blog. You can find it by searching linda billet on youtube or here is the link.- Few things I gotta say....

First- I cannot even believe I got permission from Bonobo to use their music. Kaleo had told me about this band that I would LOVE and he was right! So I figured if I could not get permission I would use generic music that the editing program provided. The whole time I was waiting to hear from Bonobo, I was editing and timing stuff to their song, "Flutter," just in case they said yes! So yeah, I was jumping around the house the day I got the OK email!

Second-The piece,"not so pretty now" would have taken 10-20 days but since I was the person filming and photographing myself the whole time (except about 5 shots that Shaundi took), it took an extra didn't help when I had my kiln broken for an extended period of time. So when I opened the kiln on the morning after the last firing, I was SO relieved. At any time that I was making parts, I could have re-done that part if it came out bad. But for the final firing of the entire piece, if any dust fell onto the glass when the lid closed, or a little fly's eye rolled off the fly and melted onto the wrong place, or anything cracked, or any of a hundred possible things went wrong, then all of the time I spent filming would have had to be redone to make a video.

Third- I gotta be getting an Oscar for this! If not acting or directing, at least editing. I think "So You Think You Can Dance" will be calling me to guest on their show any day now. Seriously, I am pretty happy with it considering I had no special lighting and all video and pictures were done with a little Sony camera!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

OK, today was one of those days that I was up at dark-thirty cause I couldn't wait to see how things worked out in my kiln overnight. This is not my usual subject matter but I am so happy with it and HERE'S WHY!

First-This is the piece that I worked on while making my video. The video is to help answer some of the how-to questions I get. If anything rolled out of place when I shut the kiln, or a crack occurred during firing, it would have meant that I spent a whole lot of time on nothing.

Second-I have been thinking about a bones piece for a couple of years, and something with flies for a couple of months. Combining them means I can empty out two of my brain's folders at once.

Third- I just plain like it! Its rare for me to like anything with this much red in it. Instead of water references, I was going for a "meat" and "drops of blood" feel. Really, the bones were initially going to be fish bones. The whole thing kept changing even after I started cutting parts. The working title is "not so pretty now" ( a nine inch nails song) but Rob might come up with something better. Anyway, as with all my bigger pieces, this is my new least until the next one is done. I am hoping to have the video done this week yet.

Oh, and the coolest part about the movie? I got permission from my current favorite band to use their music. NO KIDDING! How cool is that??!!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

VABeach sand sculptures

This is from the sand sculpting contest at VABeach this past weekend. Pictures do not do these justice. The guy pictured, said his team won. I think they were from Canada. The rear of the sculpture was just as impressive as the front. There was a team from Singapore and a couple from the Netherlands. These are just five of my favorites.

Monday, September 21, 2009


Last week we were on vacation in North Carolina with my son, Kaleo and his girlfriend, Kristen. Also on the trip were my mom and brother. It was a stellar week. The one big negative was that my daughter, Shaundi couldn't come along. The week happened to coincide with my birthday and the weather was perfect every day. The sky was crazy beautiful day and night which gave my camera a work-out. We were at Rob's boss's condo that we go to almost every year. We like to go there in the off season when it is not crowded and there is great potential to just CHILL. It was just what we needed. I read a book on the beach, The Shack, that I highly recommend.

While I was away, my kiln part came and it seems to be the ticket because I put some work in last night and this morning it came out perfect. Now I have so much work to do to get ready to leave for the VABeach show this weekend!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

ArtLess Wednesdays

Yahoo! We are leaving in the AM to go on a much needed vacation. When I get back, my part for my kiln will be here so I don't know which I'm happier about!

Well you know I always try to be upbeat but I am just getting this said-I know right now people are worried about mortgage payments, health care, and grocery money. I found a Psychology Today article in a friend's blog that tells you why arts funding is more important than you may have realized. It is short and really interesting!

Other reasons that the article did not mention are economic reasons. One example is the Pearl District in Portland Oregon. During my first trip to Oregon in the 90's, we drove through a scary run down area of abandoned warehouses etc. Artists moved in and turned it into the Pearl District, some very expensive real estate. The arts draw people (revenue) and make hotels and restaurants busy, real estate more valuable.

WITF's website has a lot of information about arts effect on economics. After vacation, I will be showing my support along with other art businesses by blacking out the front page of my site on Wednesdays.

“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” Einstein

Monday, August 31, 2009

what you do while your kiln is busted!

I was waiting on a part for my kiln which I finally got switched today. Even with the new part, it doesn't work. I ran it through a program with something in. I won't know till tomorrow if the piece I have in cracked because the kiln shut off too soon.
But while I have only small kilns, I figure it is a good time to mosaic! I made this black and white chess set. Some of the black glass is iridescent so depending on how the light hits, it goes Seuss on you. I used a lot of my bubble and striped glass in both black and white. Hard to see in these photos. I cut the chess pieces with a tile saw!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

These were inspired by a guy from VA Beach. He thought it would be cool to hang a bunch of pendants on the wall. At that time, I was thinking about small works for an upcoming exhibit where all work entered had to be less than 12 inches any direction. So thinking about a row of pendants, I came up with what I call "straws." These little guys are 5x10 each-not including the frame. This week I will take them to Lebanon Picture Frame and Fine Art Gallery for their "12 and Under" group show in September. I'm hoping they keep all three. If you haven't been to Lebanon in a while, you'll be surprised at how beautiful the historic downtown Lebanon has become. This gallery, in particular, is georgeous! Their first friday event will be Sept 4th. I'll be there. Come if you can!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Ugly Side of Art Shows

When I quit the post office I thought I was done with the mailman tan. I hardly see this as a step up. Mount Gretna Art Festival was STEAMY! Good news is that I got a "judges choice" award AND a "top ten" award. To avoid at least one smart comment I will say-YES, there were more than ten artists.

Next show is at the beach so I can go barefoot. Maybe my feet can get back to their normal hobbit charm.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Mobiles Aarrghhh!

OK so this week was supposed to be about making more light curves, and finishing the mobile. Didn't seem too tough but the week started off with my saw needing repair. Once I got that fixed, I finished the glass for the mobile. Now, I have a whole new respect for Steve Austin because making mobiles is tedious at best. Besides that, I've decided that once finished, they would not travel well so they would be inappropriate for shows!

The light curves proved to be equally taxing. I had three done but had started with five. Two broke in the final firing. While trying to photograph the remaining three, another broke! What a pain in the glass. So there are two in right now for their final firing. If all goes well, I will have four in the AM.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Mt Gretna, here I come!

What a busy month! I have a few things I am trying to accomplish as I am getting ready for the Mt Gretna Art Festival Aug 15th and 16th. The reason Mt Gretna is so fun is because it is one of the few shows that is close enough to home that my friends and fam can all go.

I have been trying to figure out the glass I would do for a mobile and I think I have it. It should be done by the show. I had wanted it done by last show!

Started doing a glass curve that can sit in a window or in front of a light. I have three finshed and I am REALLY happy with them. I'm hoping to also have some for gallery night this month at 2nd Floor Gallery .

Besides that, I just finished making the sink for one of my bathrooms, I need to drill the hole in the bottom yet. I LOVE it. Of course, it's blue! Pictures will follow.

Monday, July 20, 2009


I found out this morning that I got a little feature on the PAGuild's site for their show this weekend. The photo they showed is my "Glasshopper" and I just hung it in my living room yesterday! The link is The show is at Chase Center of Wilminton, DE. It is Sat and Sunday, indoors. I will have a 10x10 booth.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Reading Public Museum

This is so freaking great! I got a piece of my work in the Reading Pubic Museum. The PA Guild of Craftsmen is having their "Raw to Refined" exhibit there for three months and I will be part of that. The piece they accepted is "Sunny Side Up," Tomorrow night is the opening reception. WoohOOOooo!

Friday, July 10, 2009


Have been CRAZY busy. Just got a new movie editing program-AND a new camera. So here is the plan- I am doing a halloween piece for the October 2nd Floor Gallery opening that will be at a cemetery! So while I am working on it, I am taking little video clips and photos so that I can show how it is done. Then I am going to take all that- which is about a week's worth of glass cutting and cooking- and squish it into about 4 minutes so I can put it to a song. Seems weird to make a video without band kids in it.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Late last year a great friend and fellow artist, Cristine Goldbeck- told me about landfillproject. A guy from Wilkes Barre, PA had all these hubcaps that he was trying to save from becoming landfill. He was sending hubcaps ("canvases") to professional artists and asking to have them returned as art. Well now the project has become much larger. It currantly includes art from 47 countries! The project will eventually become a traveling show and a book. It's completion is projected to be 2012. Check it out at

We were lucky to have missed a tornado in Virginia Beach last weekend. Parts of VABeach had 2 inch hail falling! One of my pieces will soon have a home in France! (Thanks Pierre! Hope your wife likes it!) Hope to be in VABeach this September for Neptune Festval's art show.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Finished my recycled glass piece in time to take to VA Beach. I don't know which part I like best, the "fluff" marshmallow or the Mr. Peanuts. Some of the glass is really old. I had never heard of Kayo Chocolate before. The sobe lizards were the hardest to flatten so I lost a lot of them.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


OK, so you were wondering what I've been doing with all the glass that I've asked you to collect for me? Here is the START of my next piece. The PA Guild has an upcoming show called "Green" which is right up my ally. I have been thinking about working a caterpillar, butterfly, and chrysallis theme into the recycling, rebirth, reuse, repurpose mix. I spent the last few days sawing up jars and bottles and flattening the sculpted letters and pictures to use as tiles. They will be background for the fused glass tiles that I make. I will throw a little iridescent white in, maybe some of Shaundi's windshield that got smashed and we will see what happens, I'm hoping to have it done in time to take to VA Beach next weekend.

Monday, May 25, 2009


Today we went on one of Kaleo's "epic journeys." Kristen, Shaundi, Rob......we all went 3 1/2 hours to Ohiopyle for a hike. I usually measure how much fun I have on vacation by counting bruises on my body. Today I recieved a week's-worth. We hiked up a creek till we got to a small but powerful waterfall. Most of us were soaked up to the neck by then so we all took turns under the fall. Kristen got pulled under for a minute it was so strong! We hiked back down to where we started. At that spot, there is a natural water slide. It was the 60 or so seconds in the slide that produced the most bruising, but of course, it was also the most fun part of the day. I have to say it was by far-the most memorable Memorial Day I've ever experienced. We laughed our asses off all day watching each other slip and fall into the creek. If I could author my own life, I could not invent stuff this great. I gotta be the luckiest woman alive!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I'm working on a huge triptych. My basic plan is to use my bubble glass to make up the body of the three parts, then go over that with a few little familiar things.....clouds? birds, boats, maybe a few shells, that from a distance, the three will appear as a shoreline. At least that's the plan. Up close, you will see my patterns I've made. I'm working on two different white stripes for the foam of the waves. It will be 2 ft tall and 4 1/2 ft wide all together. It has the potential of being a really cool piece or a really expensive waste of my time. Right now, I'm optimistic.