Metal is Starbird's Medium
Published: Saturday, March 20, 2010 3:08 AM EDT
by Adam Zaremski

With an idea and outline in hand, a new artistic business in Wales is constructing various decorations through an interesting process of computers, plasma cutters and heat. Starbird Concepts, started by Sandy and Rob Starbird, creates "artful creations using metal, wood and glass."

Much of the artwork is metal, cut by a CNC (computer numerical controlled) machine after the design is fed into the system. This process allows for a vast amount of custom work to be created and personalized, something Sandy Starbird welcomes.

"Let us know what we can create for you," she said. "Anything can be cut."

After spending many years out in Los Angeles, the couple decided to move back to the area two years ago to open their new endeavor. Starbird, originally from West Seneca, said they had planned this for a long time, something that would engage their artistic thoughts.

"I would walk into a shop and see something and could visualize it on my wall, but I would think how I could change it," she said.

She spoke about how she was always interested in crafting her own decorations, even buying a scroll saw to make ornaments. The "wiggles and jiggles" of that machine were not really to her liking, but the metal work was different, and she found herself more comfortable around the heating and sparks.

The majority of Starbird Concept's work is in metal decorations, which Starbird also likes for "the edginess" she can give to the artwork. And the ability to bend or twist certain portions gives it the "3-D flair to pop out at people." Some of the creations are hanging up at the Key Bank in East Aurora and will be there until the end of March. They showcase how certain metals can be colored through heat.

Along with the bank display, Starbird is trying to get more people interested in displaying the artwork. With the CNC machine, Starbird is able to reproduce any display and she is trying to take advantage of that by creating images of the school mascots for East Aurora and Iroquois to entice the students. A five-foot replica of the Iroquois Chief logo is now hanging at that school.

Over the summer she has really been pushing the business and said she is anxious to get more of the community to see the work.

"I think our pieces are conversation pieces. The metal seems to have really caught on and it's just something different that you don't see that often," she said.

For more information or a chance to view more of the artwork,
call 716-462-6609 or visit www.starbirdconcepts.com.