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Hastings senior turns liquid fire into art
Molding works of art out of a firing liquid. News 5's Amy West introduces us to a young man learning the art of working with glass. He's a senior at Hastings Senior High but spends his spare time at Hastings College making glass pieces.
Michael Beahm is featured in this week's Celebrate Youth.
"It's just fun to take something from nothing, turn it into something that has a great end result and can be very multifunctional," said Beahm.
It's not a typical hobby for a high school student, but at least three times a week you can find 18-year-old Michael Beahm behind the burning glow of hot glass.
"I'm not really good at art. I don't like art, I don't like to draw but this is a way that I can express that artsy side that I don't actually really have," Beahm said.
They all start with this powder heated in a 2,000 degree furnace.
"Gets pretty hot, but you learn to deal with it," said Beahm.
There may a few casualties along the way, but working with college student Jeremy Hansen, Michael stretches, bends, breaks, and shapes the glass into a functional work of art.
"I've seen him grow a lot especially this year when he's been in with the intermediate students. He's really learning a lot. He's working with the college students," said Tom Kreager.
It is showing talent that instructor Tom Kreager at Hastings College said could lead to a future in the craft.
"I've got friends looking for new assistants. If he loves it I hope that he can do it the rest of his life," Kreager said.
"Right now it's just a hobby, but I would like to do a lot more in the future whether that takes me into a job or turns it into a career of some type that would be cool," said Beahm.
The finished product is kept for about 12 hours in this annealer as a computer slowly turns down the temperature.
And for Michael the process will soon start again.
"Just as long as I have a place to do it I just want to keep doing it," said Beahm.
** If you know a kid doing fun or interesting things in your community let us know. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. **
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