Betty's fascination with the work of Josh Simpson led her to take a beginning lampworking class, in 2003, at the William Holland School of Lapidary Arts. Since then she has studied with Pati Walton, Larry Brickman, Jennifer Geldard, Kristen Frantzen Orr, Kate Fowle Meleney and James Yuan.
Drawing her inspiration from nature, that ageless silent witness to the creative process at work in all of us, she finds the challenge the glass presents to be a satisfying one and takes great delight in discovering new techniques for both fused glass and the botanical beads for which she is best known. She fashions her jewelry using her glass pieces in combination with the ancient Japanese braiding technique of Kumihimo.
Betty, a professional member of the ISGB, teaches for William Holland School of Lapidary Arts, and the Crafts Center at North Carolina State University. With her husband, Betty participates in arts festivals throughout the Eastern Seaboard.
John works primarily with silver, gold, and titanium. The techniques he uses include anticlastic raising, casting, chain making, etching, fold forming, forging, and stone setting.
He finds chains and chain mail particularly interesting because they combine art, mathematics, and construction techniques into each different chain pattern. There is art in the way the finished chain jewelry decorates the body. The mathematics comes into play in calculating the new ring size to use when changing the wire gauge in a particular pattern or creating a new pattern. The techniques needed to properly construct a pattern are like solving a jigsaw puzzle.
John teaches chain and chain mail classes at the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee WI, The Crafts Center at North Carolina State University in Raleigh NC, the William Holland School of Lapidary Arts in Young Harris GA, the Sawtooth School for Visual Art in Winston-Salem NC, The ArtsCenter in Carrboro NC, and Interweave Bead Fest shows.
His mentors have included Mary Ann Scherr, Blaine Lewis, Charles Lewton-Brain, Thomas Mann, and Betty Helen Longhi.
His publications include: