Most students in introductory stained-glass-making classes are in search of a new hobby or a fun few hours, but not Connie Beckers. In 1995, she took such a course and soon built a career around the art of stained glass and kiln-working. Now, through The Goddess of Glass, she teaches others her craft during classes that cover the creation of jewelry, coasters, plates, and transparent overalls. She’s also been known to flex her instructional muscle as a guest artist on the DIY Network show Cramped Quarters, where she taught the show’s host and contractor how to make stained-glass tiles for a kitchen in the middle of remodeling.
The Goddess of Glass also sells artwork and gifts out of a separate retail shop. Patrons can commission a custom piece, such as a stained-glass window, or peruse a collection of pieces by more than 80 local artisans. The shop’s staff can also advise clients who need custom framing, helping them to pick the proper matting and frame so that their Richard Nixon rookie cards really pop.
When not writing, performing, and recording folk music, Steve Rouch finds himself crouched behind the tool of his true passion—the camera. The former student of Ansel Adams and certified professional photographer lends his eye to capturing moments during portrait sessions for families, high school seniors, newborns, and kids with an emphasis on expert lighting. He bathes each angle in soft light or shadows with up to seven lights in each session, illuminating his subjects’ best features while hiding their third row of teeth. While his mastery of lighting results in artfully composed images, his child-at-heart personality fosters a playful and relaxed setting in which clients can be themselves in front of the camera.
Having taken more than 6,000 portraits throughout his career, he’s developed a classical fine-art portraiture technique to craft stunning photos of moms-to-be, the family pet, and weddings. His photos in this style have graced Disney World’s Epcot Center, and earned him a 2012 MomentVille.com Hot List selection for his wedding photography.
Thirty years ago, Sun Control had just two part-time window-tint installers. Today, they're 15 strong—each certified to install window films not just in cars, but also in homes and commercial locations. They also benefit interiors by keeping them cool on hot summer days and filtering out damaging UV rays that can fade upholstery. For homes, tinting reduces heating and cooling costs and decreases glare while still allowing in natural light. To ensure proper fit and a seamless look, the 3M certified installers cut films and bless them with a lifetime warranty.