Friday, 27 August 2010

All Excited - Off to the IFG This weekend!!

A WHOLE WEEKEND of glass!  Can't wait! - Click HERE for a couple of photos of last time we went

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Is this what they call lampworking?

A cuple of weeks ago, with a little group of three 12 year olds, we made some garden lanterns (or lamps??) - a little bit of Blue Peter with tissue, pva, glass paints and peel-offs.

A friend is having a birthday party today, so we made them for her. Well, I say we. I did a quick demo and left them to it, whilst I sat in the garden and drank coffee.

Here's a few pics of their haul...

And some close ups...

Friday, 20 August 2010

I've got the key to the door....

.... Never been twenty one before! Well, not for a little while.

The keys to what?? Click here


Tuesday, 10 August 2010

New Studio, New Start!

Over on Dawn Turner Designs, news about my new studio opportunity, and a round of congratulations for my course colleagues....

Dawn Turner Blog

blue frit pendant cropped

This is an old photograph, but the picture is hosted on Flickr, and they've done some changes to the way pictures are grabbed for sharing - this was easy!

Friday, 6 August 2010

To Slump or Not to Slump....

... that is the question!  Actually, having had a glass piece standing on the window sill for a couple of weeks now, I think I have made up my mind...

But I will rewind slightly, because I don't think I ever posted this anyway.  

A few months ago, when we did the fundraising at Uni for New Designers, I made a fused and slumped glass dish to go in the auction - this is the one.

Was quite popular this, a friend of mine won it, which pleased me, and I also made another one which apparently has made it over to sunny Spain (lucky dish!)

Anyway, the ones I made so far were just plain, clear glass.  I was asked if I could do them in colours too, which I had been thinking about, but of course Uni just got in the way of all that creativity!!

I had cut this glass months ago, but didn't actually put it into the kiln until a few weeks back - I had chosen a blue irridised glass - I have had some great results with Bullseye irridised on small pendants; I love the way that if you cap it with clear it goes all sparkly, but if you fire irridised side up, it takes on a metallic sheen.  What I wasn't expecting,  because I had only used small sections from a sheet of glass, was the variance across one sheet:

I have to say I love the effect!  The intention was to slump this in to a bowl too - but before I did, I stood it in some of the metal feet that I keep going back to (thank you Bro!) just to see how it looked upright.... and it's, well, a bit temperamental... in a good way!

Sometimes, like right now, at night, with the house lights on, it shines metallic and appears opague... but in the day, when the light shines through from the back, the lovely richness of the blue simply shines through.

So, I think this one may just have to stay as a panel.  Got a lot of positive feedback on it already, so now I just have to learn to let it go...

(it sits in my lounge window, the room being very tame shades of browns and golds, and shouts it's bright blue at me... perhaps it needs it's own windowsill to show off in?)

Must make some more!

Monday, 2 August 2010

What is Craft?

Part of our three years doing a degree in Crafts was to discuss, in Context studies, the definition of craft, how it has changed, etc.

I follow Robin Wood, who's a traditional pole lathe turner that I saw working about three years back at Bolsover show... and a champion of heritage crafts (he's also the chair of the Heritage Crafts Association) - Robin often blogs about other makers, but I thought his latest post today, was an interesting read:

Robin  Wood - What is Craftsmanship?

It's just a pity that I wasn't following Robin's blog when we were doing context studies, I am sure that including his comments in essays and discussions might have earned a few brownie points!

Anyway - it's an interesting read.  I shan't harp on about definitions of 'Craft' although I still find myself feeling the need to explain, when  people ask what my degree was about, that no, I wasn't card making, or quilting....

The funny thing is, since finishing (and actually finally taking a well earned rest) the two things I have done that are vaguely creative?  Making a set of invitations for a friend (yes, the dreaded card-making!) and erm, a glass painting session... (and I don't mean with traditional methods, or enamels, I mean good old hobby paints).  Oh the irony....