Before entering the world of glass, Randy worked as an events photographer in the late 60s for the Oakland Tribune, and for a brief period was privileged to work with Ansel Adams. He studied ceramics at the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, California where he was mentored by renowned ceramicist Peter Voulkos. Upon graduation he received the prestigious scholarship to the University of Art in Osaka, Japan as one of the first exchange students between the Universities of California and California College of Arts and Crafts and Osaka, Japan. That grounding in ceramics soon led him into the largely unknown frontier of studio art glass.
As a modern day master of this ancient craft which had all but disappeared in the United States with the advent of mass production, Strong is one of a handful of American glass artists, including Dale Chihuly, who was instrumental in reviving the studio art glass movement. In fact, Randy was with Chihuly in 1970 when Dale and John Hauberg selected the location for the now renowned Pilchuck Glass School in Seattle, Washington, which set the modern studio glass movement in motion.
Strong is the winner of the juried 2005 and 2008 Niche Award for blown glass awarded by Niche magazine for the best of blown glass in the United States. Randy’s glass sculptures have been acquired by international collectors and are a part of collections ranging from the Corning Museum of Glass in New York, to the Louvre Museum in Paris.