Sunday, January 25, 2009

Notes from the Glass Studio: Batch Annealing and Then & Now

Last night I finally had enough beadies made to fill the kiln for a batch anneal:From this point on I will probably be annealing my beads as they are made. I have been falling in love with certain colors of striking glass in luscious pinks (like rubino oro), and cooling them, to cold and reheating them just takes all of that delicious color away. In fact, a whole bunch of those teeny beads in there are made from Moretti/Effetre dark pink, which I only had a little bit of from an assortment of shorts. It was a nice pastel pink, more light than dark, but still pretty. I went to put it on my wishlist and I thought there had been some mistake...this dark pink was $39.00 a pound! The same as rubino oro. By contrast, light pink is just $13.00 per pound. I understand that the more expensive colors are more difficult to produce and do warrant the higher price.

However, once the beadies were taken from the cooled kiln this morning, my lovely dark pink beads had turned into light pink beads, but at a dark pink price! And my rubino oro went red plum, as usual, and a new color that I totally fell in love with, carnelian/coper opalino, that struck to the most beautiful watermelon/pink lemonade color, turned...well...a less deep watermelon/pink lemonade color. Bummer.

I will likely spend the day outside with the flexshaft tool cleaning the bead release out of the bead holes. Oh what fun. I think cleaning the mandrels/bead release/bead holes comes in just above photography as my favorite part of the process.

Then: When I started making lampwork beads it all looked innocent enough:
This is actually how I started. My left brain set up the area, my muse was just chomping at the bit wanting to have at it...after all, how can one create in such a sterile looking area...

...and then my muse broke free and had its way. Glass rods all in a pretty line arranged by their place in the color spectrum? Bwahahaha! Me muse thinks NOT! Color is to be experimented and played with, explored and savored, the more the better! What if I put this with this, or this color on that? Oh, I can't find what I want, I'll use this instead...

It didn't take long to get here (Now):
These photos are actual and untouched and are both my actual glass workstation. The only thing that has changed for me is the location. From the motHell laundry room to the back-of-the-bus studio.

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