Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Sun, Full Bore!

The Arctic air is blowing through town, but the sun is shining! Although it is distracting as I sit all day at the torch, I love it, even though I have to fight with the bright rays competing with my concentration on a ball of molten glass, I am so happy!

There was that hiatus for one month while I struggled with even more new stuff, and the latest floral beads are the result. I mentioned a new tutorial I have been working on, from Lydia Muell. All of the past month's work has led up to being able to make even more sophisticated roses. And I am learning new ways to "paint" them and their buds and foliage. I don't know why I didn't just take up painting in the first place, since this is just about the most difficult way to do it. Imagine painting with hot fluid glass, on glass, where you cannot exactly mix colors like you can with paint, and you can't remove it once you lay it down.

I hope you enjoy these beads. The largest is about 25cm round, and the longer ones are about 35-40cm long. Some are etched, but that is a leap in faith, believe me, taking the shine off a bead. One never knows wehre the details will go when one does that!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Full Circle

It has been nearly a year since I began my blog here. Once again we are having this teasing weather...sweaters one day, pouring rain and sleet the next, and a mass of mud and ice outside.

My spruce tree is a hub of activity...chickadees, two pairs of cardinals, blue jays, nuthatches, finches by the dozens, all enjoying the various feeders hanging in the tree. And then, if I am lucky, the tribe of twelve turkeys also feeds there, gathering up the carelessly dropped sunflower seeds. And if I am REALLY lucky one of the two woodpeckers will stop by and have a nibble.

Meanwhile I am steadily working on roses. I have a lot to show since my last entry in January so I will begin with these beads. All the flowers here are encased in clear, mostly done in Reichenbach and Gaffer glass. The cool red bead was pressed into a neat shape...looked at from the end it is a diamond form rather than a tubular bead, so there is lots of glass on the edges that adds to the depth of the bead.

I am working on a tutorial by Lydia Muell, and next post I will show the beads I have done with what Lydia has taught me.