March 13, 2011

Why I don't teach, cutting and a promise

People have told me in several occasions that they would have liked to attend mosaic classes that I teach. Each time someone asks me about classes I am very flattered.

But... I don't teach...
I don't teach because I am not too good with people, but mainly because I think that learning a technique is not that important. If you look at books, at art works, you can figure out techniques.
What I find helpful is taking art classes. When you learn to see shadows, it doesn't matter if you practice it on mosaic or oil painting, and for that there are no tip or tricks. It is a long journey, some of it is learning, some of it is experience, and no 5 or 10 or 14 days of workshop can be enough.

In the last SAMA conference in Austin people said to me that they would love to study from me how I do my cutting.

I have no hidden tricks, but I have some tips for good cutting -
  1. I use mainly wheeled nippers. I don't use a grinder, I don't use any machines and I don't own any. I find that the imperfect cutting is more perfect.

  2. I make sure my nippers are sharp and adjusted.
    I rotate and change the wheels on my nipper frequently. Since I am working an average of 6 hours a day (7 days a week), I change the wheels to new ones about once in 2 weeks. I replace my nippers to new ones every few months. After a while the nippers are not that parallel and I loose my ability to cut as I wish to.

  3. I am not afraid of wasting materials, but that make it all more costly!

  4. Every new day in the studio starts by examining the work I have done in the previous day, and I'll remove all parts I am not happy with, no remorse there. Some days end with less glass on the piece than they began.

  5. This make my pace very slow. I have learnt to accept this pace and love it, as it allows me to grow with my work.

I have just started a new piece, which I'll photograph daily and post here its progress including comments, that's a promise.


  1. very interesting Irit I'm going to check my wheels right now!

  2. Lovely tips Irit. Thank you. I'll definitely follow your picture journey now. Thanks for the promise

  3. listening and waiting and watching

  4. PS.......I toooooooo tear pieces apart and rebuild. YAY!! you would fall over at the waste that I have had.....

  5. It is so interesting to see others work. Everyone has different approaches to their art. I appreciate the opportunity to see your WIP.

  6. Thanks for sharing!

  7. I like your tips. I now don't feel so inadequate when I do my mosaics.


  8. I agree, technique is good to learn..but the main thing with any art in my opinion is - "What is it that you want to say with your art"?...Anyone can make "things"..But to make something that touches the heart of another, that speaks to the humanness of what we are about on this planet..this is what a makes art meaningful, more than just a "thing". Connection is what it is all about to me, in the long run everyone wants the same, friendship, happy Children, laughter, shelter, sustenance, health and for some a spiritual connection. We also have a yearning to be creative creative in all things not just visual art) and this creativity needs to have purpose to make it worthwhile for the giver and the receiver.