Posts Tagged 'glass art'

Exeter University Student of the Year Awards 2016

exeter university award recycled glassP1010516Delighted to have been asked to make the awards for Exeter University Employee of the Year 2016. This is the second year running I have been commissioned to make recycled sculptures for the award ceremony.

They are made from recycled glass, some are made with all the small shards of glass that are a by product of cutting glass for leaded windows, some is old broken picture frame glass and some is bottle glass. I cast these small pieces of glass together into slabs and even the wooden bases are made from salvaged wood.

P1010518

 

Past Present Future Project

Really pleased to formally announce I have been chosen as one of the artists commissioned to make a piece of art as part of  the Exeter Community Centre’s  Past Present Future Project 

I am very excited to be involved and will be making a window for the Centre in response to the memories and discussions of local people over 60 who live locally, or have a connection to the St David’s area of Exeter.

blind children from the turn of the century The Exeter Community Centre had a prestigious history as the West Of England Blind School, from the mid 19th Century to 1965 (when it moved to a new site) and blind people from all over the country were educated in a range of practical and traditional academic subjects in the building. The site now has a  new lease of life as a community centre, with local charities offices, local groups and classes and an excellent cafe.  To celebrate the past and future of the building I intend to make a multi-sensory piece with lots of textures for people with little or no sight to enjoy as well as sighted people and I hope to incorporate some braille as well as interesting textures. The window will sit between the cafe and the main foyer in a prominent position.

I have been greatly helped by the West of England School Association with archive material (including some excellent photographs of past students) and hopefully I will be running my workshop with past alumni of the school. This is really exciting to me as I cant wait to hear their memories of the school and what they have gone on to do since those days.  Being a visual artist I am obviously very dependent on my sight and its going to be a fabulous challenge to make

prestigious past student of the school

prestigious past student of the school

something which will also appeal to the other senses and to get the opinions of people without sight. historic blind school

St Davids is an ancient part of Exeter, with a rich and very varied history; capturing the memories of people who have a  life-long connection with this central Exeter district will be really fascinating.

What we need is LOTS of memories of the area, so if you know a person who is over 60 and wants to be part of the project then please encourage them to get involved!

 

ppf grab

New experiments: stained glass and kiln fired photo transfers

There are many things I should have been doing today, making hearts  (I have sent most of them off to various galleries), writing my first article for UKHandmade  (very excited about this new project) and photographing and listing my work on my website  (always a chore). Instead, I have been turning some of my photos into new glass pieces; I have had these photos mind for ages and I am glad to finally get round to putting idea to glass.

  This is not just reckless experimentation, I have a piece to make for OrganicARTS Open Studios Art Trail in September and I am hoping to do some collaborative photographic/glass designs with local photographer Martin Sharpe. In short, I want to be really on top of the technique before the summer.

My first respectable panel using photo transfer paper sold on its first trip to a craft fair, but if I am honest there have been more failed pieces than successes so far. The first problem being the paper fires to a sepia colour which clashes badly with most greens (learned this the hard way, but it also gives a lovely vintage feel with the right colours) and it needs to be fired at fuse cycle temperature not a painting firing, as I learned to the last panel’s cost (wrong programme on the kiln, Doh!)

Cost is the key word in all glass art experimentation, all the materials I use are expensive, some have quadrupled in price since I started working with glass and this makes the explorations and experiments vital to developing new ideas costly, which can be quite a frustration!  Fabulous glass artist Peter Gilles  talks about cost v.s experimenting very well on his excellent blog and I took heart from his musings.

Anyway nuff moaning; how does this fire-able photo transfer business work? Firstly, I choose my photo and manipulate it to have a very high black/white contrast (you can also do any kind of photoshop magic at this stage too), then print the image onto the special transfer paper using a black and white only photocopier, then cut you glass to size and float the image off the backing paper in warm water (it makes a satisfying hissing noise when it hits the water). Next float the transfer over the glass, make sure its on straight and get rid of all the air bubbles by smoothing with a damp cloth.  Allow 24 hours to set and then fire in the kiln to the temperature on the instructions.  These ones are setting and look great… but now we need to see how they turn out after they have been fired. Creases and air bubbles are always a danger and there is always the possibility of the glass failing or the transfer not taking properly….we shall see!

The images are from my recent travels and include a ruined wind pump, (from a trip back to my home of Norfolk), an image of people on the beach and a view across the Teign estuary (a view I keep coming back to in my work at the minute).

Results after firing to follow soon………..

Ground up glass experiments

This week I have been making and then painting with frit. Frit is glass which has been smashed and pummeled into small fragments which can be used like paint on glass to add details or paint whole pictures. I got outside on a concrete surface (steps at back of house) with scraps of glass wrapped in newspaper and thick brown paper and smashed them to smitheries. This smashed glass can be graded into different sizes by sifting through sieves with different size holes, but for my purposes this was not essential. I then went about gluing these tiny bits of glass to a larger piece of fusing compatible glass base glass, to create pictures to be fired in the kiln today. 

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Downs and Ups in my glass adventures

Its been a strange few days in the world of my work. Friday I had to cancel my Easter exhibition I had been planning at the Duchy Centre for Creativity on Dartmoor as it has had to close due to lack of funding, this is a total shame as I had got together 4 other artists and we were all working towards a big Easter show.

This has left me with an unusual hole in my schedule and also a strange moment in my creative process. I was focused on making a good quantity of new work around a Dartmoor theme, suddenly with the exhibition being cancelled it seems unnecessary to spend so much time making leaded panels. For several months now I have been wanting to start glass casting and painting with glass frit. So I have decided to spend a couple of weeks experimenting with glass casting techniques along side some new leaded works.

Today I made my first batches of frit (grinding up scraps of waste glass to a powder or small chunks) and I thought I would celebrate with some new bunting designs, these go in the kiln tomorrow!

Image

Home improvements, home coming and a new project for Open Studios

My family and I escaped the long over due building work on our house last week and travelled to Norfolk to meet my new niece for the first time and we had a lovely week in the sunshine with my family. I have not been back to my home county for over a year and I forget how much I love the dramatic wide sky’s of the flat countryside.

We have returned to a house of dust with no gas or hot water (in fact not even a kitchen sink!) but it will come together fast in the next couple of days. The finishing of the kitchen is down to me and over the Open Studios fortnight (3-18 September 2011) I will be making fused glass tiles to go on the walls and a stained glass panel especially for the specially made opening in the wall. Visitors to my studio can watch my progress with both projects and you can follow my daily progress here, as I will be posting daily during the event with photos of the process.

 

Empty paint pot appeal!

Its the time of year when I start panicking about what to make for the TRAIL (Teignmouth Recycled ART In Landscape), which runs over the summer holidays from Shaldon to Dawlish. The exhibition is wonderfully inclusive, with submissions from local schools (pictured Sid the Seagull by Hazeldown School) and community groups to well known local artists and even international exhibits.

This year I am making a piece for which I need around 30 empty paint pots (or if its white or black paint they can still have paint in, I can use it on the sculpture)…keeping my idea under wraps for now so as to keep you all guessing what I am going to make (I bet you cant!). So if you are local and have some hanging about PLEASE contact me and I will

take them off your hands!

I was luck enough to win TRAIL last year with my boat sculpture and unfortunately I am the last winner to receive a prize as we have lost our funding this year, which is a shame. But the exhibition will go ahead anyway, thanks in so small part to the hard work and dedication of organiser, Liz Lockyear! Providing a wonderful free activity to get locals and holiday makers thinking about art and the environment in a fun way. Please come and have a look if you are in the area in the summer holidays.

The exhibition also uses the TAAG gallery for the indoor part of the exhibition, where the work changes from fun on the seafront to more serious art and some amazing pieces are available for sale, from small items of jewellery to large sculptures. It it not too late to submit a sculpture proposal to TRAIL, its a very friendly exhibition and you don’t have to be a professional artist to join in. Just click on the link to find out more


I am a stained glass artist working in Exeter and a busy mum of 2; trying to carve a path through the tide of washing and children's toys that stands between me and making beautiful things.

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Folksy

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Crocheted Squid

green man roundel

fused recycled glass slab with fern painted detail

burst of spring

Jewel Coloured Nautilus_fused glass_bathroom_window

Cemetry Lodge outside

arch window with red tree

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Wishing tree after 3 weeks

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Bottle Top Rock Pools

small recycled stained glass heart

Large recycled stained glass hearts

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boats in the harbor

Moroccan Panel

Brays Torr from the River lydd

art deco fish

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