In the fused beads of Bruce St. John Maher, the redwood forests of Northern California are held like fossils in some crystalline relative of amber. Using enamels, Maher paints forest scenes for his beads with precision and detail. A career in the restoration and reproduction of enameled stained glass prepared him for this work in miniature landscapes.
To make a bead, Maher encases a painted scene between enameled layers, dichroic glass, and a final top layer of clear glass. The stack of glass is then fused in a kiln. Bruce St. John Maher fine tunes his shapes through hand lapidary work and faceting. A typical Maher bead features a small enameled fly encased in topaz glass with faceted edges ~ a piece that resembles amber from some Baltic beach.