New Year, New Skill
20 January 2015
With a new year brings a fresh perspective on life and that often involves learning something new. Jeannette Therrien is a glass artist who runs courses from her studio in Ogbourne St George. It’s a visual feast of kiln-formed glass, deep-cast glass (sculpture) & stained glass – there are so many things you wouldn’t imagine possible.
Originally from Essex, Jeannette’s love of children and creativity spurred her on to train as a nursery nurse. After qualifying at 21 Jeannette went to her father’s homeland of Canada where she became a nanny for a creative family. Despite loving her time in Canada she found it rather cold, and missed the English Spring, so after a few years she came home.
After a few years working at a nursery in London Jeanette came to Wiltshire when she set-up a business in caravan and camping in Swindon, which she did for the next 20 years.
However, like most of us we all crave change in our lives and Jeanette heard about an Access course in Swindon for older students. This was closely followed by a three year degree in Ceramics and glass at High Wycombe and it was here she discovered glass – she loved the colours and the different techniques.
And she hasn’t looked back. After teaching stained glass in schools and setting-up Wagon Yard Artists in Marlborough in 1998, she eventually moved to Ogbourne St George in 2001 and built her own studio. Here she holds her popular classes which draw students from Windsor to Bristol with her close proximity to the M4.
Her courses are weekly - Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday morning and Tuesday & Wednesday nights. And every few months Jeanette runs workshops on Saturdays for the whole day for those who can’t make it in the week. The classes are extremely friendly and relaxed with a choice of 3 different techniques to learn during term. These are Kiln formed glass, foiling or the Tiffany technique and stained glass. Jeannette can also be found teaching at Marlborough College Summer School and participates in the annual Marlborough Open Studios.
When Jeanette isn’t making glass or teaching she’s walking her dog Rupert or spending time with her nephew’s children. Her current challenge is to walk the whole Ridgeway with a friend – they do 6 miles at a time. They’ve got to Uffington so far so there’s lots more beautiful countryside to look forward to. She loves the village where she lives and the countryside inspires much of her work.
Jeanette does love the sea and her campervan makes it easy for her to get a sea fix when she needs it. Last year she went to Wales and one day she hopes to drive in her van to Italy.
There’s so much Jeanette can do for you. Her tablemats, coasters and plates are stunning. If you’re installing a new kitchen then consider a bespoke glass splashback to really give your kitchen a lift. She also does glass panels and fun glass creations such as flowers for the garden. It’s extremely difficult to photograph glass and do it justice, a single image doesn’t show the depth, so I’d really encourage you to go along and take a look. Just email or phone for a visit and Jeanette would be delighted to see you.