Dougherty Glassworks

Explore the captivating journey of glass artist Cameron Dougherty, studio manager at Vancouver's Terminal City Glass Co-op. From innovative designs to overcoming challenges, witness the evolution of a passionate craftsperson.

Dougherty Glassworks

Edition 3 Feature
We Interview: Cameron Dougherty 
Location: Vancouver, Canada 
Photo Credit: ©Kassandra Taylor @the.socialrefinery 


What is it that you do and how do you do it? 

I am a glass artist, a glass-blower, a maker. I consider myself more of a craftsperson than a conceptual artist. I make my work at a shared glass-blowing studio, Terminal City Glass Co-op, where I’m also the studio manager. Technically, there are 180 members, but only about 40 or so are active. That’s everybody from bead makers to hobbyists to other production glass-blowers. I manage the studio, making sure that everybody has what they need, and when stuff gets broken, I fix it. 

Two years ago, when I started as studio manager, I initially received two 4-hour blowing slots per week as a perk. It was a critical time for my business, where I was able to develop new designs without income. That’s when I came up with the thumb divot glass, which is my main bread-and-butter item and what made it viable to start scaling up my business. I now have a few other products that are picking up steam. 

Terminal City is the only publicly accessible glass-blowing studio in Canada’s lower mainland, and it was one of the major determinants in moving to Vancouver. Other than the fact it’s beautiful and amazing here, the rates are extremely low. A proper glass-blowing studio with one station and a medium-sized furnace would cost about C$150,000, and the overhead is very high too, so that’s a huge barrier to entry. But I am well on my way to having my own studio in the next two years or less. 

How do you describe your style? 

Mid-century modern with a contemporary twist. I came up with that recently and I’ll stick to that. I like single colours, kind of minimalistic, but I don’t want to put myself in a box. I want to be making stuff that people want. Once I have my own studio, I will need to be making work five days a week. 

I always have ideas up in the air and a whole bunch of things that I’m working on. A lot of time is spent just getting good at making something, because I don’t want to put anything out as a product until it’s really refined. I want it to be the same calibre as the rest of my work. 

How did you get into glass?