Karan Mitchell
In 2003, I was injured and could not work. I had fractured my left wrist and had surgery on my right knee. I had a cast on my wrist, crutches and a brace on my right leg. Boy, was I a mess. I was kind of down in the dumps. Someone had told me about "The Bead Project", offered by Urban Glass in Brooklyn. They were interviewing women to participate in the program and I thought why not try something new.

I interviewed with Annette Shapiro and although I got the feeling that I wasn't exactly what she was looking for, I was given the opportunity to participate in the program. I had to stand for a long time while making beads, but it was well worth it. I burned my cast several times, but through it all I learned a new artistic style; almost a lost art, that of making glass beads.

After completing the program, Annette (the director of the program at that time) told me that she really was concerned that I would be able to make beads due to my physical condition at the start of the program. I almost wasn't selected! She was very proud of me for sticking with it and completing the program.

Later, I was chosen to take a jewelry making class as well as a class on Mosaics. This was a special honor offered to students who showed promise in their bead work.

I have had the opportunity to share my talent with others through teaching. I have worked with children in the capacity of Technical Assistant at Glass Roots in New Jersey and The Boys and Girls Club of New Jersey. I have given back my talents to Urban Glass as well as a teacher and technical assistant. I create beads for private events, sew and write poetry.

I hope you enjoy my beads at Wherefore Art Thou?

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