Monday, 27 June 2011

Diary of an Exhibitionist #6

First sample is out.... YAY!  No bubbles, no sticking, a very slight bit of warp which we can live with.

I am quite pleased, but it has put me in a little bit of a dilemma... originally it was coloured glass, then it was plain with coloured edges... however, I really rather like the simplicity of the clear, uncoloured glass....

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Diary of an Exhibitionist #5

Made it down to the studio this afternoon, and it was actually quite warm in there (anybody who has called into Shed 2 will know that this is uncommon!)

Moulds all dried out, a couple stacked up here, and yes that is SOME of my glass stash behind....

And one has gone back in to (Kiln) Bill with a layer of glass on top... fingers crossed for no bubbles, glass sticking or warping of moulds....

Diary of an Exhibitionist #4

Oooh, time is creeping by SO fast!

I've been busy in the studio this week, preparing moulds - hopefully I've made plenty, just in case!  Got my glass, and a couple of spare sheets on the way (just in case).

Moulds have been prepped, carved, kiln washed and I left them drying yesterday.

Another change of plan on the design!  Talked to Mark last week, and said how I'd still wanted a spiral... and it turns out, it might be a bit easier to do than a straight ladder... so new design idea is a bit like a spiral staircase, with the panels coming out from a central pole...

This is where I have to take a leap of faith, both in Mark's skill and my own visualisation and idea, as we really, really don't have time to prepare a mock up - unless you count the little cardboard model I made the other day!

I am off to the studio in a couple of hours, will try and remember to take some photographs of the moulds this time!  And hopefully the first piece of glass is going in the kiln, please, please, please pray to the kiln gods for me!!

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Diary of an Exhibitionist #3

Just as quick update as promised earlier, some mock up images when I was trying to decide, coloured, clear or mixed. Please DO excuse some of the brightness, it was only to try and give myself a rough idea how each might look

Diary of an Exhibitionist #2

Wow, where does the time go?  I'll tell you, into planning and working things out!  This is a bit of a quick post and run - hopefully I might have a few images to put up later this week.

So, where am I up to?  I've spoken to Mark at Steelcraft Fabrications, who's kindly going to make my metal framework.  Poor chap, put him through the mill about with all my crazy ideas.... I wanted to do some sort of helix type affair, but when he did a mini mock-up for me, it wasn't so easy as I'd envisaged (bear in mind I am not a welder!)  - I realised that, with that kind of complex structure, it would take a lot more planning and designing than I now have time for.  I've got to rely on Mark's considerable skill and experience for him be able to create this framework for me without having the final glass panels to work with... not an easy task!

I've been a silly billy and done my usual thing - allowed time for the *making* yeah yeah, I know how long my mould making takes, etc, but I forget to factor in how many times I need to put the kiln on - chances are, the glass is going to be ready only a few days before the whole piece has to be delivered, so, we're working a bit blind on the frame.

With this in mind, I think I will go back to the original idea of keeping it quite simple - of course, I am not easy to please, because, whilst I want this lovely metal frame making, I don't want it to be the main part of the finished piece, if you get what I mean?  I am an glass artist, not a metal sculptor.  So poor Mark, has got to make me something that holds the glass how I want, isn't too overbearing, but is good and strong, all without having the glass to work with (mind you, he says he doesn't actually WANT the glass in his workshop, he might break it - that WOULD cause me to panic!)

So, what else?  Well, as I said, hopefully pictures soon, but talking to a colleague the other day and she reminded me of the beauty of using clear glass - so I think I will be going back to that, rather than the coloured panels.

Again, it's a slightly practical solution too - I haven't got time to make up a maquette to make sure the colours would work with each other - and I am also enjoying the experimenting with enamels to colour the clear glass - here's an early sample:

Using similar texture making techniques as I have done with the coloured glass, but using lovely clear instead, and adding touches of colour.  Decision made!!

Monday, 6 June 2011


Have you ever been to a Luminarium?  What IS a luminarium, some of you may be asking...I first went into one with my Mum and son, what I thought was around four years ago.  When I rooted through the computer archives, I found this image, which actually dates back to 2004!

My first Luminarium visit

I can't even remember if we went to Lakeside, Nottingham specifically to see it, or if we took my son to the play park there and just happened across it.  Either way, I am glad I did.

I can't describe it very well - my best effort is that it's like a giant bouncy castle that you go inside instead of on top.  Made a special material, it's mainly grey, with coloured panels.  And it's these coloured panels that make the magic happen.  The whole of the inside of the structure glows with the natural light filtering in from the outside.  Ambient sounds are played in the background, and the whole experience is, well, just rather wonderful.  You wander round inside and just lose yourself in the atmosphere. 

See Architects of Air for a proper description!

We saw Levity II at Derby last year, and went to see Levity III yesterday - and I just stared at the patterns created, and felt so fired up. I can't wait to try out some Levity inspired panels!
Patterns, patterns!

Anyone used to watch Time Tunnel?

The 'Tree'