~~Heather learned how to blow glass in 2007 at Crystal Forge in Omaha, Nebraska. Learning under Ed Fennel, Heather not only learned the basics of blowing glass but was also inspired to look up other glass artists and techniques. Moving to Minnesota for college, Heather studied Art and Foreign Cultures at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. During this time she began a mentorship under David Royce at Foci, Minnesota’s Center for Glass Art, Minneapolis, and then took a year to study abroad at Tokyo Glass Arts Institute in Tokyo, Japan. Since returning the USA she has taken classes at the Corning Museum of Glass, New York under Emilio Santini, Gayla Lee and Mark Ditzler, at Bullseye Glass, Bay Area under Pichard Parrish, and at Foci Glass, Minnesota under Boyd Sugiki and Lisa Zerkowitz, Bryan Ethier, František Janák, Mark Hall, and Michael Boyd. In each of these places Heather was able to learn different techniques— blowing, casting, coldworking, engraving, flame working, fusing, rolling up, sand casting and sculpting—which she then perfected and used in her work. Currently, Heather teaches fusing classes at Potek Glass in Minneapolis, Minnesota and shows her own work throughout the Midwest.
In casting I focus on figurative and expressionistic sculptures that combine the graceful gestures of dancers as well as the freedom of birds in flight. The longing for freedom, for flight, is one of the most common human desires. My sculptures come from myths and legends all around the world. The Garuda in Hindu mythology, the story of Icarus from Greek legends, the story of the firebird from Russian folk tales, and many more supply the inspiration for my work. The need to create something beautiful out of chaos is another such desire. That is why glass is the perfect material for my work. Just like a phoenix rising from the ashes, the beauty of glass is created in the destructive element of fire. Its translucency and fluidity is perfect for conveying the grace in the movements we make every day.