41 episodes

Welcome back or welcome to the Taming Lightning Podcast, I'm Percy Echols II. I'm the creator and host of Taming Lightning, as well as emerging Plasma Tech at Pittsburgh Glass Center, where I'm researching and developing a space for exploring Plasma and Neon Light.

Taming Lightning Podcast is a series of conversations to help expand our understanding of Plasma and Neon Light - looking beyond it's associations with novelty and sign making, and to explore the potential for Noble Gases as an artistic medium with each guest sharing their unique knowledge and experience.

Taming Lightning Percy Echols II

    • Arts
    • 4.7 • 7 Ratings

Welcome back or welcome to the Taming Lightning Podcast, I'm Percy Echols II. I'm the creator and host of Taming Lightning, as well as emerging Plasma Tech at Pittsburgh Glass Center, where I'm researching and developing a space for exploring Plasma and Neon Light.

Taming Lightning Podcast is a series of conversations to help expand our understanding of Plasma and Neon Light - looking beyond it's associations with novelty and sign making, and to explore the potential for Noble Gases as an artistic medium with each guest sharing their unique knowledge and experience.

    EP 40: Glass Focus 1990 Interview of Paul Seide, ft. Zach Layhew

    EP 40: Glass Focus 1990 Interview of Paul Seide, ft. Zach Layhew

    In today's podcast I'll be joined by Pittsburgh Based - Glass Artist, Zach Layhew to read and review a 1990 Glass Focus Interview of Paul Seide. We talk about what Glass Focus was, and hear about the founder and Glass Collector, Beverly Copeland.
    "American artist Paul Seide has developed a unique type of glass sculpture which utilizes scientific and electronic technology along with a highly developed artistic sense. His famous neon sculptures are activated by transmitted radio signals, which eliminates the need for messy and cumbersome electrodes. This allows him more freedom to investigate a greater range of illuminated shapes. Seide developed this technology after many years of experimentation. With his pioneering work in the field of neon he follows in the footsteps of his father, Charles, a pioneer in the development of acrylic paint. "
    Check blog post at www.taminglightning.net for more information! 
    Music:
    Retro by ONE  Taming Lightning by Trav B. Ryan    Next Time by Hayku Walking by Ras-Hop  

    • 1 hr 11 min
    EP 39: Michael Flechtner - Drawing with Light

    EP 39: Michael Flechtner - Drawing with Light

    On today’s podcast  we have Michael Flechtner! 
    As a child Michael Flechtner was fascinated with electricity, fire and colored light of all kinds.  It could be the stained glass windows at church, his father testing the Christmas lights on Christmas Eve and the neon signage in his home town…adorning shop windows and local drive-ins and movie theatres.
     

    With Flechtner’s background in sculpture(BFA, MFA) , as he began to learn how to bend neon tubes, it became clear to him through literally some “wrong turns” that he would be able to create 3 dimensional neon forms in what is primarily  considered a 2 dimensional medium. He believes he has a “gift” that enables him to be able to visualize the finished work and then to create patterns, jigs, techniques and other devices in order to create these very “in the round” neon artworks.  

    Michael would say “I knew that it was very important to develop sound bending skills and techniques so that my work would survive, handling, bombarding, and finally assembly and installation.”

    And thus over the years, he’s created a number of forms in various sizes that include sea life, aircrafts, radios, cameras, etc.  The smallest 3D plane he’s made has a 6 inch wingspan and the largest 3D shark 7 long long. Flechtner says “It is surprising to me…as well as others how strong these fragile constructions really are”.

    Note for context this episode was recorded in early June of 2020, it seems so far away, with all that’s happened in between. Let’s get right to it!
     
    web: www.taminglightning.net
    ig: @taminglightning

    • 45 min
    EP 38: Wayne Strattman - Standing on the Shoulders of our Predecessors

    EP 38: Wayne Strattman - Standing on the Shoulders of our Predecessors

    Hello Lightning Tamers! This episode number 38! In today's podcast, I have Wayne Strattman.
    Strattman’s work encompasses over 30 years of innovation in lighted glass plasma technology, as an artist, designer, researcher, teacher, advocate and author.
    Wayne has invented unique lighting technologies such as Luminglas- an interactive flat panel plasma light that Star Trek fans will recognize as the charging station for the Borg. While working on creating a plasma TV, he came up with a process of fusing window glass together in a kiln to make  flat glass that lit up and was kinetic. Today, his work remains on the cutting edge of lighted glass engineering, with many recent developments of new effects never seen before.
    www.taminglightning.net
    ig @taminglightning
    Music credits to the following artists: Preview - Retro by ONE  GEEX promo - Sunny Side by One (O-N-E) The opening theme - Boost by Joakim Karud Intermission - Serenity by prod. Riddiman Credits - The Process by Lakey Inspired  

    • 49 min
    EP 37: Intro to Plasma | Chapter 4: Starting your Plasma Journey

    EP 37: Intro to Plasma | Chapter 4: Starting your Plasma Journey

    April 2021 | In the final chapter of this collaborative series, Percy Echols II discusses his journey to become an independent plasma maker, strategies for assembling a gas-filling manifold, and thoughts on accessibility, education, and advancing the field of plasma and glass.
     
    Created and hosted by Percy, the Taming Lightning podcast unpacks the alchemy of plasma and neon technology while interviewing glass artists, craftspeople, and scientists in the field.
     
    Welcome back, lightning tamers!
    In this collaboration with GEEX, Percy and Ben Orozco are producing a 4-part series for people new to the plasma process, introducing elements of plasma in an easy-to-apply format and touching on Percy’s journey as a self-starter and alchemist. Podcast episodes premiere monthly through April.
     
    FOOTNOTES
    Want the show notes? Click here: 
    https://www.geex.glass/resources/taminglightning-podcast/ 
     
    READY FOR MORE?
    Excited to learn more about plasma? Check out Taming Lightning: 
    http://www.percyechols.com/taminglightning 
     
    SUPPORT
    We’re hoping one hundred listeners can chip in $7/episode. Support Taming Lightning’s production and compensate valued voices in the field of glass education! Fundraiser ends May 15th, 2021.
    Venmo @geexglass your support with the word “PLASMA”.
     
    LINKS
    Follow @GEEXglass!
    Web: https://www.geex.glass/
    IG: https://www.instagram.com/geexglass/
    FB: https://www.facebook.com/geexglass/
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/geexglass/
     
    Follow Percy, AKA @TamingLighting!
    Web: http://www.percyechols.com/
    Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/2xhtRabhnRdEOhpZ1P39WV
    IG: https://www.instagram.com/taminglightning/
    FB: https://www.facebook.com/TamingLightning/
     
    ____
    MUSIC CREDITS
    Preview: Retro by ONE
    Fundraiser: Serenity, produced by Riddiman
    Introduction: Boost by Joakim Karud
    Global Rare Gases: Mixtape, produced by Riddiman
    GEEX Intermission: Sunnyside by One
    Information Unlimited: Reentry by Lapse
    Swagelok: Lucky, produced by OBI
    Credits: The Process by Lakey Inspired

    • 1 hr 10 min
    EP 36: Intro to Plasma | Chapter 3: Chemistry of Collaboration

    EP 36: Intro to Plasma | Chapter 3: Chemistry of Collaboration

    Feb. 2021 | In the third chapter of this collaborative series, Percy Echols II and Ben Orozco discuss filling and illumination. Created and hosted by Percy, the Taming Lightning podcast unpacks the alchemy of plasma and neon technology while interviewing glass artists, craftspeople, and scientists in the field.
     
    Welcome back, lightning tamers!
    In this collaboration with GEEX, Percy and Ben Orozco are producing a 4-part series for people new to the plasma process, introducing elements of plasma in an easy-to-apply format and touching on Percy’s journey as a self-starter and alchemist. Podcast episodes premiere monthly through April.
     
    FOOTNOTES
    Want the show notes? Click here: 
    https://www.geex.glass/resources/taminglightning-podcast/ 
     
    READY FOR MORE?
    Excited to learn more about plasma? Check out Taming Lightning: 
    http://www.percyechols.com/taminglightning 
     
    SUPPORT
    We’re hoping one hundred listeners can chip in $7/episode. Support Taming Lightning’s production and compensate valued voices in the field of glass education!
    Venmo @geexglass your support with the word “PLASMA”.
     
    LINKS
    Follow @GEEXglass!
    Web: https://www.geex.glass/
    IG: https://www.instagram.com/geexglass/
    FB: https://www.facebook.com/geexglass/
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/geexglass/
     
    Follow Percy, AKA @TamingLighting!
    Web: http://www.percyechols.com/
    Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/2xhtRabhnRdEOhpZ1P39WV
    IG: https://www.instagram.com/taminglightning/
    FB: https://www.facebook.com/TamingLightning/
     
    ____
    MUSIC CREDITS
    Preview: Retro by ONE
    Fundraiser: Serenity, produced by Riddiman
    Introduction: Boost by Joakim Karud
    Global Rare Gases: Mixtape, produced by Riddiman
    Intermission: Sunnyside by One
    Information Unlimited: Reentry by Lapse
    Credits: The Process by Lakey Inspired

    • 1 hr 13 min
    EP 35 : Rusty Russo - Neon in Excellence

    EP 35 : Rusty Russo - Neon in Excellence

    In today's podcast, I have Rusty Russo, who has been working and developing his skills in the area of Illuminated Glass Tubing for over 30 years in which he’s acquired an expert level proficiency in glass fabrication, vacuum tube processing, system design, and construction, leak detection, technical support, packaging design, and technical writing.
    He’s also a Senior R+D Glass Blower for a Boston-based start-up specializing in energy-efficient inductively coupled soda-lime light bulbs.
     
    From his beginning as a neon bender, he’s worked as a technical consultant for The EGL Co., a columnist for Signs of the Times Magazine, demonstrating artist and technical assistant for The Glass Art Society, and assistant instructor/visiting artist for various education facilities such as the Pittsburgh Glass Center, Penland School of Craft and Urban Glass.
    Additionally A recognized industry authority on all phases of neon vacuum tube production. Having served as Co-Chairman of the ISA Research and Standards Committee on Neon Processing, where he co-created an internationally recognized standard for the processing of neon tubing. This provided a practical, teachable, repeatable solution to what had been a historically random intuitive process.
    He currently works as a freelance technical consultant, and glass artist, conceptualizing and creating 3-dimensional sculpture using glass, light, and mixed media.
     I met Mr. Russo in the summer of  2018 during the Pittsburgh Glass Center’s first Plasma Workshop taught by Wayne Strattman and Mundy Hepburn where he assisted alongside Ander Mikkelsen. In the chaos of that class, Rusty was a grounding tether to the complexities of plasma and neon, someone who was very comfortable with meeting you at your level. He’s been such a great source of information and support in regards to troubleshooting and identifying components in the manifold, and helped provided confidence and guidance in my career development in technical consultation on several jobs.
    Like many of the guests on this podcast, Rusty has a rich history and knowledge, and we barely scratch the surface of who Rusty is. Treat this as it is, an introduction, he’ll talk about the origins of his interest in neon, the influence of music and martial art on his practice and teaching philosophy, and his drive toward excellence through repetition, self-examination, and refinement.
    Episode Show Notes
    Music:
    Intro: Boost by Joakim Karud
    Intermission: Sunnyside by ONE
    Outro: The Process by Lakey Inspired
     
    www.Taminglightning.net
     

    • 50 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
7 Ratings

7 Ratings

Jan Almasy ,

Where passion meets knowledge.

Percy is a phenomenal host. It’s amazing to listen to how passionate he has about the field and intriguing to hear his guests take. I’ve learned a ton about the industry and I started with no prior knowledge!

Would definitely recommend as a cool listen. Keep it up!

MondototheMax ,

Plasma gold

Love this show. Sheds so much light on plasma and the challenges of making such a unique artistic expression. Percy has great guests! Keep it up.

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