Sunday, July 22, 2012

Day 2 experimenting in the studios...

I was shocked to see I got a mention on Barbara Lewis' Blog today!  What a huge honor.  She has set up a facebook page to post your pics of  Happy Accidents in your creative pursuits.  Lots of great stuff being shared over there already!

Soooo, on to day two in my studios.  Today I did some enameling of tubes to make beads and also a bit of soldering.  Both came out okay and both will be part of a necklace I hope to get together later this evening.

This is the soldered piece.  I shaped the copper disc, enameled with cobalt and pine yellow.  The bale piece is a piece of 10g copper wire, hammered and shaped.  I left the center of the back of the flower unenameled so it could be soldered on the bale.  Tip of the day:  Don't over heat your solder or it will burn out and not hold your pieces together (if you do though, no worries, just brass brush both sides and try again).  It took me 4 attempts to get it soldered correctly :).

Then there were the tube beads, made from bent and cut pieces of 1/8 inch diameter copper tube.  Once the smaller pieces were enameled you can't see the bend so much.  The one marked FAVE was actually the first one, done with transparent enamel.  Loved how the copper and oxides showed through which I tried to replicate  more times with mixed results.  You can see one of them has a large "bubble" which is actually more of a blob.  The Tip: make sure to keep turning your bead or the molten glass will slump on you.

The two blue beads were meant to be willow green, however the willow didn't seem to like having to be fired so long and kept going muddy (could also be because I use propane and not MAPP).  So I just recovered in cobalt.  The Tip:  If you underfire your enamel it will look bumpy like the one marked in the photo.  I should b able to fix that by refiiring.  Also note that you can see more of the curve of the tube because I didn't add nearly as many layers of enamel.

All of the tubes were made using a variation of Barbara Lewis' immersion method.  It definitely worked!  The Tip: when using curved beads your mandrel may not go through both holes, have another one handy to remove molten glass from the open hole or you will end up with a really tiny vessel instead of a bead!

I didn't get a chance to work more with the stamps today.  Hope to do that tomorrow.

Hope to see you back for Day 3 :).

1 comment:

  1. I can't wait to see how all of this comes together. Looks like it will be very interesteing.


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