The story of Lotus Glassworks begins in Tucson, AZ in 1996. I was
19 years old and working at a place called Cosmic Pizza. It was a pretty
typical teenage job experience (maybe a bit more laid back) and it had
Next door to Cosmic Pizza however, was a small glass shop called Chaotic Enterprises. I was always interested in art. I had been into drawing, and sculpture mainly, and this was totally different. I pestered the owner repeatedly for a job. Finally after about 5 months of this (and offering to work for free), I was hired.
I spent the next few months learning how to make very basic pieces (clear tokers and slides). After being taught how to make a basic silver fumed spoon, I was on my own. Everything else I wanted to learn, I had to teach myself.
Chaotic Enterprises turned out to be somewhat of a prophetic name for the company. There were 6 of us and three torches and we were all on completely free form schedules. You can see how things could get a little hectic under these circumstances.
Well, after about a year at Chaotic Enterprises, the company went bust. It was fun while it lasted, but it was hardly a serious attempt at running a business. I bought the equipment I needed from my ex boss and went off on my own to form Lotus Glassworks. A few of the others did the same thing. I was way too engrossed in glass blowing to let it slip away.
Starting out was rough. I worked in a carport on a gravel floor at my house with no air conditioning in the summer in Tucson. It was HOT. It was also hard to get customers. I was only twenty years old at that point. I had to do all of my initial business face to face. It was hard to negotiate with store owners when you were viewed as some punk kid (which, looking back, was probably a pretty accurate assesment). They liked my work, don't get me wrong, they just did not like haggling with someone so much younger than themselves. After just a few sales, I was able to put together a catalogue (for a look at it click the picture to the upper right). After mailing the catalogue out to potential customers, I sat by the phone to wait. Response was slow. It looked like Lotus Glassworks would fail before it had a chance. That's when I got the call I needed. Bill, from a store called the Psychedelic Wizard in Fresno, CA called to place an order. From there on out, LGW has been moving forward. After a couple of years, I developed this website. I still sell glass to shops around the country and abroad, as well as individual customers from the internet.