I spend several hours a week working with molten glass in a flame. "Lampworking". There is a connection with light and warmth that is particularly soothing in winter.
Color & Exploration
When I work my glass in the flame, I have come to enjoy the process of exploring a palette of colors and patterns - using a fairly limited selection of glass rods to build my pieces.
It's an alluring experience to create combinations of color and material that react together in so many unexpected ways. I will choose a limited palette and then work with it for a few weeks at a time - playing and testing and creating.
After working the glass in the flame for sometimes close to an hour, the steel mandrel with the burning hot bead is tucked into a kiln at something like 970 degrees Fahrenheit to slowly anneal the glass to room temperature over many hours.
It's kind of exciting to retrieve your work, usually the following day. Sometimes (quite often honestly) the finished glass comes out of the kiln later and it's not what you had imagined or hoped.
And other times, it's so much better.
This can make for a little bit of excitement or anticipation every time you pull your glass from the kiln.
But regardless of the outcome, the process of crafting the glass is pure and calming.
While the torch is lit, I feel calm and mesmerized as I work the glass in the flame - the progression of rods of glass to molten glass to shapes and patterns - requiring focus and control, it is almost a meditation.
The Winter Solstice Glass Collection
When I completed a recent session of a few weeks at the torch, the result was a batch of glass with a certain seasonal feeling to it. Lots of white, bits of red, and flecks of sparkle like candles.
Since it was winter and just about time to celebrate Santa Lucia, I knew I would be calling this collection the Winter Solstice Glass Collection.
You can explore the collection here.
And I did write a new blog post recently that explores the theme of winter solstice and how the seasons influence my work which I hope you'll check out too: The Colors & Poetry of Winter!
Peace and love,