The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place: from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider’s web.
This quote explains why I work with different art forms, and the need of not being restrained by just one. The following is a brief description of my artwork.
Fused glass, also known as warm glass or kiln-formed glass, is made when two or more pieces of glass are heated in a kiln until they melt, or fuse, together into a single piece. The kiln must be fired at temperatures of about 1,100 to 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit, and while this may seem very hot, it is actually very low compared to blown glass temperatures, which can reach up to 2,200 degrees Fahrenheit. This is actually one of the oldest methods of working with glass, as some historians say it goes back to the time of the Ancient Egyptians. However, the first definitive evidence of glass fusing can be traced back to the Romans, who used this technique before the discovery of glass blowing. This type of glass today is used to make a variety of objects including fused glass jewelry, dishware, decorative art pieces, and even windows.
Although the very beginning of glass beadmaking is a bit obscure, we know that this ancient art form has been practiced for more than 3000 years. Back then, an oil lamp was used to melt the glass; that’s where the name lampworking comes from. A blowpipe was used to add oxygen to the flame to make it hotter. Today, we’ve gone high tech. We have a myriad of torches from which to choose. Propane and natural gas are the fuels of choice, and bottled oxygen is used as an accelerant to the fuel to make the flame hotter. We’ve come a long way!
Most of my jewelry is made with colorful borosilicate glass “boro” (hard glass). The colorful, wispy and metallic effects of “boro” colors always remind me of a kaleidoscope of colors. Other pieces are made with soda lime glass (soft glass). I love to combine leaf metals, like gold, silver, and copper, with the soft glass to create unusual patterns and designs. My jewelry pieces are accented in sterling silver or silk cord. All beads are annealed (hardened in a kiln), giving them strength and durability.
Lampwork Functional Art
The exquisite beauty of glass can be functional too: Wine Stoppers – Cheese Spreaders – Bottle Openers – Forks – Pens… accessorize your table or desk!
METAL CLAY JEWELRY
Metal Clay is a material used to make jewelry. Metal Clay is made from powdered metal, such as silver, and mixed with water and methyl cellulose. The scary sounding name, methyl cellulose, is actually made from the cell walls of green plants, making it perfectly safe to work with. Metal Clay handles just like traditional modeling clays. One uses a torch or kiln to dry the Metal Clay into a solid hard object, that can be filed, cut, patina, and polished.
UPCYCLED GLASS – ecoBottles
Repurposing discarded glass bottles with found objects to create jewelry, sculptural, and functional art, is very eco-friendly. A glass bottle sent to a landfill can take up to a million years to break down. By contrast, with a little effort, a glass bottle can be repurposed into a useful piece of art. Not all glass is created equal. Therefore, melting recycled glass to make jewelry and functional art out of one color takes imagination to make it look beautiful and interesting. In the glass world, we have to deal with what we call compatibility and co-efficiency of expansion. Big words that can easily be explained: glass cools down at different rates. Melting mixed types of glass can cause the glass to crack as it cools down if the two pieces of glass are not compatible. In dealing with bottles used for glass blowing or fusing, the rule of thumb is to melt down the same colors together, however, from experience I have found that its not a fool proof way to stay away from compatibility issues. Rather than have the probability of ending with a broken piece, I just eliminate the problem by using one bottle and coming up with creative techniques to enhance the color of the glass. This can be challenging but great fun.
Metalworking is the process of working with metals to create individual parts, assemblies, or large scale structures. The term covers a wide range of work from large ships and bridges to artistic sculptural pieces and delicate jewelry. Metalworking began with the Egyptians, who first worked with the ductile gold for a variety of ornaments and jewelry. Over time, civilizations progressed from gold to harder metals, which meant their work went from decoration to infrastructure. Today, modern tools for metalworking are capable of making very precise pieces of a wide variety of metals. Some of these tools include the welder, the plasma cutter, the mill, the lathe, and the fancy computer numerical control machine. Metalworking is a science, art, hobby, industry and trade. Its historical roots span cultures, civilizations, and millennia.