By LEIGH GUIDRY, the advertiser
YOUNGSVILLE, La. (AP) – Dawn Savoy calls her art studio her happy place. This is where she can create, come up with new ideas, and find something exciting among fragments of colored glass and metal.
“When I walk in with the glass and play, it gives me real joy,” said Savoy. “I want to be in that studio. I want to play with glass and play with ideas, to be part of the art itself “.
He said he finds joy and fulfillment in making art from glass.
“I’m just fascinated by the glass, mesmerized,” said Savoy. “It’s almost spiritual: the way the light dances through the glass, the textures and the colors.”
Savoy began work nearly three decades ago as a hobby, making items for herself or gifts for friends and family. About five years ago, her friends encouraged her to start selling.
She became a seller in local markets and started her own Etsy shop, AsunriseStainedGlass. On Facebook it’s Sunrise Glass Creations, but the name was too long for the craft store site.
Now his art is paying for itself.
“This allows me to do what I love,” she said. “Feed my passion.”
He works from a converted room in his Youngsville home, where he keeps some of his earliest works of art or ones that didn’t turn out the way he would have liked.
“I keep them because I was learning,” he said. “They are very special. They too are art. The problem with art is that it doesn’t have to be perfect. “
Working with glass is a multi-faceted process, like construction, said Savoy. He starts with an idea, then identifies the patterns and makes a plan. He chooses colors and glasses, paints, cuts, welds, polishes, cements and sometimes cooks the product.
She will not claim the title of master of any of these techniques, but she has learned a lot over the years, especially thanks to other local glass craftsmen who have shared their time and wisdom with her.
“They took the time to teach me, encourage me, share knowledge with me,” said Savoy.
She has grown over her years of practice, which includes learning when to quit.
“Glass is glass and I have to put it down if it starts to break,” said Savoy.
Make traditional stained glass, Tiffany glass, mosaics and castings. He prefers to work with lead and finds metals almost as fascinating as glass. He also started traditional glass painting.
Savoy lost sight in one eye in 2019 and struggles with depth perception.
“Working with the boring little pieces of thread is a challenge,” said the artist. “It’s very challenging, but I find ways that work for me.”
He is able to keep a flexible schedule when it comes to his art. When he has an upcoming event or market, he might work 8-19 hours a day, but he can usually take his time.
While it makes her happy, working with glass is not something Savoy does alone. She has seen her art of her touch people in very special ways.
A woman bought a glass cross from Savoy to be placed in a garden in memory of her deceased 8-year-old son.
“I was reduced to tears at the thought that my glass would touch people, inspire people,” she said. “I have commemorated special moments with my art.”
Savoy appreciates these moments, but tries not to think about the expectations of others while creating.
“Everyone looks at things a little differently,” Savoy said. “But when the right person sees my art, you can tell. A woman, her eyes tuned to this little honeycomb and it was done. This teases me. I smile even if they don’t buy “.
Originally from New Orleans, Savoy moved to Lafayette in 1988 where she met her husband Ronnie and made Acadiana her home.
“I’ve been here long enough to know this is the best culture in the world and I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else,” he said.
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