Saturday, December 9, 2017

Finished Slumped Fused Scrap Glass

Well here is the finished product of my patchwork 8” square slumped dish. This was created by making part sheets with glass powders sifted over stencils and found objects. The individual pieces are full fused then cut up and arranged to fit the square dish mold and then slumped. The designed part sheets are only one layer of 3mm glass, either clear or white opal. There is some waste as you have to trim off the edges of the part sheets where they shrink in and get a bit thicker then the center. Its not completely a waste as you can make frit or use pieces for jewelry etc.

Here is one more piece I recently completed. This bowl utilized a lot of scrap clear glass left over from cutting out large clear circles. The base piece was an opal piece of gray glass. Next I cut up the scrap clear glass into random sized pieces. Next I shifted Light Cyan 216 bulleye powder over the base gray piece and gently placed the clear scraps all over the powder layer. I made one slight mistake when putting this together. I picked up all the clear scrap pieces and set them in the bowl mold. Unknowingly the pieces got contaminated with kiln wash powder left on the mold.....darn. Won’t do that again. So when it was full fused some of the kiln powder showed up in the clear spaces between the layers of glass. Not all but some. I liked the piece so thought hard.....what can i do to save it? I got out my ColorLine paints and carefully added white to the most noticable areas where the kiln powder showed up. I also added some of the cyan glass powder to other areas less noticable and did a second full fuse. Turned out very acceptable and it turned out to be a more interesting piece. Sometimes glass is more forgiving than you think, so don’t give up to soon if something goes wrong.

Both of these pieces are good examples of designing with scrap glass. I dont have a lot of room for storing a lot of scrap so I try to use it up as it accumulates. Sometimes it gets your creative juices going figuring out ....”what can I do with those scraps”.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Crackle technique and Glass Wafers

Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. I was excited to get back to glass fusing after all the cooking and house cleaning. I just recently bought 2 new ebooks. One is Lena Beckeus’ Fusing Techniques with Powder and Fiber Paper. The other one is INTRODUCTION TO KILNFORMED GLASS POWDERS Basic Crackle Texture, Micro and Backed Wafers by Bob Leatherbarrow. Im just starting to experiment with some of the techniques in these books. The photos above are my first attemp at the basic crackle technique. I used two colors, Olive Green and Woodland Brown for my powder layers. This was done on clear 3mm glass. One layer only of glass. After layering 3 layers of powder and spritzing with water I carefully placed a stencil on top and sifted woodland brown to create the pattern of squares. After full fusing it was slumped into a small sushi plate. I was quite happy with first attempt and am excited to do more.

The next set of photos was a piece I did before Thanksgiving. I wasnt to happy with it so decided to keep working on it. The border was just the dark green sponged on with enamal paint which I didn’t care for and the center had a small dark green square that I also didn’t like. So I sponged on the yellow paint on the top giving the border depth of layers. Then I had made some glass wafers by fusing glass powder directly on a kiln shelf as instructed in Leatherborrow’s book. I used a circle whole punch to make a circle stencil and sifted yellow and white powders and fused. I then decided to try placing the wafer over the center area I did not like. I thought it still needed some green in the center to repeat the green somewhere else. I used my enamal paints on top of the wafer. I wish I would have also used some of the yellow paint in the center too. I full fused this piece a second time. The wafer fused in nicely but has a slightly rougher texture when you run your hand across it. Its probably from the kiln paper powder that remained on that side when I flipped it over. Next time I will carefully place the wafer in water to remove all the excess powder and let dry before using it on a project. But overall I am very excited about these two techniques and am looking forward to improving my use of them.

Right now I have a piece in the works using up some part sheets I made awhile back. I cut off the thick edges and chopped them up into usable pieces to make a patch work piece. Some pieces have transprent backgrounds and some opal. I’m going to place them on a darker green opal base piece. Here is a photo of just the rough pieces layed out. My next blog will show results.


Friday, November 17, 2017

Fused Glass Deep Bowl

Soooo happy to be back blogging again. After the last ios upgrade the blogging app I use would not work. Waited a long time for them to upgrade the app. It finally updated yesterday, Yah.

So to get back into it I’m going to talk about this fused glass bowl. I wanted to do a coral bowl but one that would be usuable, not open and full of holes. This worked ok but not the look i wanted. I full fused the red and clear base together. Instead I should have fused the red strips alone on kiln paper to get the more rounded holes then put it on the clear base and fuse a second time. Oh well next time.

Also I had to slump it twice because it slumped unevenly and not all the way to the bottom. I had to slow down the ramp time and increase the hold time a bit. It reslumped just fine and is very even now. This bowl is 10” by 2.5 deep. This is the first time I have slumped in this mold. Another thing, the mold did not have a hole in the bottom to allow air to escape, so before the second firing I drilled a 1/16” hole into the bottom. I also learned the clear rim is hazy because it was slumped to fast in the first slumping. This tends to happen most often with the clear teka glass not with the opaque glass. So take it slow when slumping clear Teka.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Recent Paintings

Near the St. Joe river, Idaho....16x20 acrylic on Gessobord

Finally posting again. Sorry about the delay. I have been gone on another 3 month rv trip and just got back last week. The painting above was done in Idaho along the St. Joe River. It was a beautiful area although the sky was pretty smokey most of the time. There were these beautiful yellow wild flowers everywhere. Couldnt resist this view right next to our motorhome. I started this painting out doors and finished it in the rv.

The next painting of another bunch of yellow wild flowers was painted in Indiana. These were more daisy like flowers. We saw them through many of the mid western states. I painted this in the rv very loosely, almost abstractly.

Indiana Wildflowers....11x15 acrylic on watercolor paper

The bottom painting was done in my studio right after arriving home. This was inspired by the yellow birch trees I saw on the way up to Pikes Peak in Colorado. The sun was dancing on the yellow leaves as we rode the cog train up to the peak. I hadnt realized I was on a yellow streak with these three paintings until I posted them on this blog.

Pikes Peak Birch Trees.......15x22 acrylic on watercolor paper

I am going to be home until January and then off to Phoenix for 3 months. Hopefully ill get a lot of painting and fused glass projects done while I am there.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Digital Art

When you don't have access to real paints try using painting apps. I have an ipad pro and find painting on it very gratifying and useful for doing thumbnails and practicing. Adobe sketch has one of the best watercolor effects as far as creating a wet flowing realistic look. It also has layers so experimenting without worry is possible. Auryn Ink is also a good watercolor app. It does not have as much control or I should say as easily controlled painting system, but that is for you to judge. The still life above was done with Adobe Sketch and the one below was done with the Auryn app after creating a black and white line art in another app. I brought that image into Auryn and then painted on top of it. Give them a try

Monday, July 17, 2017

Photos for Reference Material

We are traveling in our motorhome on our summer trip so my glass fusing has stopped for awhile. I did not bring the kiln on this trip. So I am back to doing art on my ipad and eventually doing some painting. I have been taking many photos and would just like to show you how I use photo apps to make them better for painting references. There is an app called Pixlr that is great for adjusting your photos and changing colors to make a more interesting painting. I also use an app called Retouch for removing items from my photos I dont like, such as the paddle boat. As you can see the top photo is the original in all its local color glory and the bottom photo is the one I adjusted with the two apps I suggested. The bottom photo now looks like a reference ready to paint. Almost looks like a watercolor as is. Try using some of the free apps available. They are very useful and will help you to get away from painting local colors you see in your photos and help you to experiment with more exciting color choices.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Using Up Scrap Glass

I needed to use up some scrap glass. I dont have room to let it pile up. The piece above is just one layer of clear that I sifted tangerine powder over a stencil to create the design. It can be cut up or incorporated into a collage of other pieces of glass. It may be the starting point of a new project.

This second piece is about 6x7. It too started as a clear piece of glass that I sifted a heavy layer of brown powder evenly all over. Then I placed some scraps of opal greens and reds and various transparent yellows on and full fused. When full fused it came out to nearly 6mm thick so I think I may clean up the corners and slump it. We'll see.