Hello I'm Sue and I'm originally from and now living once again in Devon, UK. I have lived and worked in various countries, including the Middle East and the Mediterranean, and have been influenced and inspired by different cultures and architecture from my travels. I also have a keen interest in the environment, nature and the landscape around me, and naturally direct this energy and passion into my work.
My Mosaic Technique
Over the past 17 years I have developed my own unique glass mosaic technique which I have taught to many students, both in the UK and abroad. I blend recycled glass and new stained glass directly on to mirrors to give a better reflection and depth of colour. This makes the final mosaic change shade in different lights and angles thus continuously changing its appearance, character and mood. By using weather resistant flexible glues and grouts, my mosaics become suitable for all year round outside display, adding a splash of colour, a flash of light and a spark of interest to any garden or gloomy corner. Some of my students have transformed their gardens into enchanting magical places and captured their creativity and imagination in their work – even if it’s just a few simple pieces of glass on a small mirrored tile. Their mosaic art work contains their essence and their passion.
Due to the recent Covid-19 situation, I have unfortunately been forced to cancel my workshops. The photo below is from my end of the March 2020 workshop - the last before Lockdown. Some managed to sneak away before the photo shoot and some hid behind their mosaics, lol, but everyone still made beautiful pieces. I hope these fun groups we had are not a thing of the past and that we can start up again in the foreseeable future even if it's on a smaller scale initially.
At the start of lock-down, I shared a series of free daily tutorials, which can be viewed on my YouTube channel Sue Smith Glass Mosaics. These tutorials show step by step how to create your own garden flower mosaic like the one below, using the technique I have developed for glass on glass/ mirror mosaic.
I was overwhelmed and touched reading messages of thanks and appreciation from my Facebook followers, with numerous comments of how I had saved their sanity and helped them through these trying times by giving them a focus. It often made me very emotional and brought a tear to my eye as I read these heartfelt messages.
It also made me realise that many people in isolation wished to learn new crafts, expand upon their current knowledge and skills or simply needed an escape or outlet during these challenging times.
A New Goal
It became apparent from comments and requests for advice on what to buy and where to buy it, that it was impossible to acquire the wide selection of colours and styles of glass desired, without investing a considerable amount of money and also having sufficient storage space to house a nice selection of materials. It has been a strain financially for many people this year, so the cost of starting up a new hobby or continuing an old hobby is also a big consideration.
To overcome this, my new aim was to make readily available all the ideal tools and materials necessary, whilst keeping costs and storage space required to a minimum for my potential customers. As a result, I created my Sue Smith Glass Mosaics online shop.
Online Shop set-up
I wanted to be able to satisfy peoples’ needs and requirements and offer Mosaic Kits, Coloured Glass Hobby boxes, Tools, Materials and Fun Accessories that are not available in the shops in the pack sizes or with the variety that I am offering. For example, there is no ‘Tool Kit’ available for glass on glass mosaic so you would have to buy a kit for leaded stained glass work and a kit for mosaic glass work. Some of those tools in each kit would be redundant, therefore wasting money which could be spent on other valuable resources and materials. I have put together the 'Essential Tool Kit' for my technique - everything in it I use myself and it is available in my shop.
A positive outlook
I want to use my experience and knowledge to make it easier for others, so that they can get straight on with their lovely new hobby. So many people find it therapeutic and relaxing – working with colour and creating something beautiful from their heart and soul using scrap – perhaps creating a touching gift. Many of my workshop students have said that they truly escape from the stresses and strains of the world and everyday life when they attend a weekend workshop or start a new project at home for themselves. It also opens up a whole new social circle for them with many of my students building new friendships and supportive relationships with each other that continue on into the future.
As well as my Sue Smith Glass Facebook page, we also have the lovely Facebook Group ‘Mosaic Connections’. It's a wonderful supportive group that promotes positivity and offers work hints, advice, tips and tricks. Complete beginners are welcome – we are all continuously learning and members share their work and ideas from all over the world. These connections made through the world of mosaic are truly uplifting and inspiring.
If you have any enquiries or would like any further information, then please don't hesitate to contact me or follow me on my Social Media Pages @suesmithglass
Stay safe and take care, Sue