I am the oldest of five siblings born in 1981 to the loving parents of Bob and Linda Wheeler. Growing up in Toledo, Ohio I was surrounded by lots of glass history, both artistically and industrial. My first introductions to hot glass were annual school field trips to Libby Glass Factory and Sauder’s Farms. I watched these skilled gaffers in amazement as they effortlessly transformed the hot molten material into beautiful objects. Seeing those fascinating demonstrations stuck with me, I started seeking out more glass studios. Cedar Point, Green Field Village, and the Toledo Botanical Gardens were all studios that I started visiting to learn more about this medium.
My first time touching hot glass was in the spring 2000 when I enrolled into an introductory class at the Toledo Museum of Art. After that first dip in the furnace I was hooked and wanting more. From that point on I knew that studying and working with glass was going to be one wild journey that I never wanted to end. That following fall I enrolled at Bowling Green State University to pursue my bachelors of fine arts degree focus in glass art. Unknowingly I was in the presence of the best mentor that I ever had the opportunity to study under. Robert “Bud” Hurlstone had created a nurturing learning environment that promoted the life long study of glass. Teaching his students that glass is more than a hobby, it’s a way of life. After graduating in 2004 I started working at productions studios as an assistant across the country.
Currently I am living and studying in the British Virgin Islands running a waste driven trash to treasures glass studio. My interests lay in the new developing eco-friendly energy efficient aspects of hot glass production. It is deeply important to me, future generations of artists, and mother earth. I am responsible as an artist to rethink and reshapes the way we produce our art in a more environmentally responsible way. This wild ride of glass will only continue if we take care of our studio motherearth.