Thursday, March 10, 2011

Shiny Fancies: Part 3 -- Potted plants

My glass pieces are done by flameworking, also called lampworking, which uses a torch to melt the glass. Glassblowing generally refers to larger scale work done with a furnace, but you can also blow glass on a smaller scale with a torch. I usually make solid sculpture, generally small (hence my class title "Tiny Glass Sculpture") but for this show, I was convinced that it would be difficult to fill the gallery with my tiny tiny critters. And as long as I was going big(ger), I decided I'd experiment with blowing glass as well. All the flowers in this series are blown in some way, as are the leaves.
Most of the petals are pulled besides the obviously blown one. The leaf construction is less apparent. For these leaves, I blew a large bubbles, then cut the hot glass with shears into leaf blades. Blowing is pretty fun, but cutting glass is even more so. I like the organic way the leaves moved as the soft glass flopped while it was cut.

One thing I really like doing in glass is glass chains. I still have a bunch of fine silver wire for making silver chains, but haven't quite found the time to do the tedious fusing of rings in order to do a handmade chain. Making glass chains is a slightly different technique and is still tedious but it encourages me to make fun handles on my ceramics. I also like doing glass nudes and am working on movement and expression in my figures.
The next piece again incorporates glass chains into the pot. This one took a while to attach all the glass rings around the ceramic loops.

The pitcher plants were a lot of fun to make. I coil-potted green, blew out the bubble slightly and coated it with a bit of red frit (small glass fragments/dust). I then popped a hole in it and lined the opening with red. The sides were pushed and pinched to further shape the flowers. I'm excited to explore the variety of pitcher much potential.
The last potted plant is a fantasy flower. I wanted to play more with cutting glass, so I coil-potted white, then reddish purple, then green. I blew out the bubble, then transferred it over onto a preformed stem. Heating up one section at a time, I then cut apart the petals. The stamens were added last.
This pot, like the others, was slab formed. My friend Charlie helped form the band running around and through the pot. Initially I was going to have the climber on a rope or chain coming from the top band, but she wanted to hang onto the pot directly.

1 comment:

Mel said...

Thank you for continuing to post pictures of your gallery showing, especially for those of us who aren't able to attend! I love reading the stories behind your pieces, as well. :) What glazing method did you use for the pots?