Glass is entrancing and enticing… The lure of the beauty of glass, with its amazing colours, depth and sparkle.
I’m continually learning / experimenting and developing my skills on my amazing glass fusing journey, but I wouldn’t have got where I am without some help from others… it was my friend Sue I have to thank for getting me started on this path in the first place and I was helped by Christine and other members of the Southport Ceramic Artists group where I began fusing glass. Also some of the other Lancashire glass artists I know, have helped me with kiln advice, plus when I bought my second hand kiln I was given some helpful kiln notes from its previous owner. My second hand kiln was still under its 3 year guarantee and Kiln Care who make these kilns, have been a great help (even sending me a new digital controller, when it developed problems on the cusp of the guarantee ending).
The journey has not been without some glitches though… before I got my kiln I was getting quite dispondent with many of my wirework glass and other experiments not working out and still now many of my experiments can be ‘hit and miss’.
I’m really careful when I’m handling glass, especially cutting glass. To help me to combat my fear of cutting large pieces of glass and also to help develop my skills and knowledge further, I attended the Summer term glass fusing course 2 years ago at Lancaster college.
It really did help me. I had to cut very large pieces of glass and break them with my hands!
The course also gave me the opportunity to have ‘a go’ with other techniques, tools and machinery I’d not used before, such as a circle cutter (I decided this wasn’t for me as I don’t have enough strength in my hands and my circles turned into moons), a grinder and etching paste. We also used a different type of glass, float glass otherwise known as ‘windowpane glass’, which is much cheaper than the type of glass I normally work with.
Typically, I prefer the most expensive type of glass!
As I love anything that sparkles, I use dichroic glass (combined mostly with coloured glass) in my glass work, which is ultra expensive, but very sparkly too.
Samantha, jewellery artist x