Monday, April 18, 2011

Rhody artists ~ Tanner Glass ~ Cranston

Artist's name: Suzanne Tanner
Shop name: Tanner Glass
Web site: www.suzannetanner.com
Twitter: tannerglass


1. Tell us about your work: I like to refer to it as FUNctional Objects for Everyday Life. Primarily, I'm a glassblower, but I added a line of magnets, paperweights and hooks a couple of years ago that have taken me a little bit off course from glassblowing. I do make many of the glass pieces I use in that line, though. So now my time is divided between making things in the Hot Shop (glass studio), and at my at-home studio. It's a great balance!

2. How did you come to be a professional artist/crafter? Lots of work, determination, and most important, a love for what I do. I was fortunate to get my start when the market was really hopping. It gave me a good foundation to move forward and develop new ideas. I've always had a creative side, and a business side, and feel pretty forunate that I was able to combine the two. (And a huge thanks Mom and Dad for not only recognizing that I wan't going to be a Doctor, but for encouraging me to do what makes me happy).

3. Where do you draw your inspiration? Ah, FUNction! I don't make anything that I wouldn't use myself. In fact, many of my products were designed out of necessity. I wanted some cool little vases to put on my windowsill, and viola, the Pinch Bud Vases were born. It was important to me that I made things that people would actually USE, not just store on a shelf in a closet.

image: etsy.com

4. What’s your favorite item to make? Hands down, it's the Coin Bud Vases. They are everything I love about glass.....transparency, texture, simplicity, design and ingenuity (they were tricky to make!)

image via etsy

5. What’s your best seller? Prior to the introduction of the Magnets, the Bottestoppers were always my best seller. They were the first product line I designed, and have continually been popular. Once I started selling magnets, and expanding on the selection, they quickly became the top seller. The Pet themed magnets (Good Dog and Good Kitty) battle it out with the Vintage Maps for the top spot.

image via etsy

6. How long have you been in Rhode Island? I grew up in CT, and was fortunate to spend my summers in a tiny beach community, Quonochontaug, RI. Aside from a 5 year stint in Colorado, I've spent time every year in lil Rhody. I moved here permantly about 11 years ago, and I still head to the beach house in the summers.

7. What do you {heart} about Rhode Island? I'm just going to rattle off a bunch of things, in no particular order......Watch Hill sunsets, Quonochontaug, the "accent", the most awesome restaurants (especially Farmstead/La Laiterie, Fellini's Pizza, and Nick's), ArtsInRI, the Foundry Artists Show, Blackstone Boulevard, the fact that (roughly) a 25 minute drive in any direction can take you to the beach, the City, the Bay or the farm, the East Bay Bike Path, and lastly, the Warwick Animal Shelter (the past home of my best pal, Olivia (dog). They took really good care of her until I came along).

8. Please include anything else you’d like to add: When I moved here, I really didn't know anyone. Although I spent my summers in Quonnie, I hardly knew much about Rhode Island. The Rocky Mountains were trying to lure me back, but once I started meeting people, I realized how awesome this little state is. I've met some of the most talented, driven, kind people, and I'm so grateful. If it weren't for the friendship, and employment of Tracy (www.tracygloverstudio.com), I'm certain I'd have left a long time ago. Now I can't imagine being anywhere else. Lil Rhody rocks!

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