20 10, 2014

Making a casting parts library


A silicone master mold is an obvious safety net in glass casting: If you accidentally employ one of the 10,000 methods for destroying a piece during casting, a master model gives you a second chance. The original sculpture (and photo it was taken from). It measures about 14×14 inches, and maybe 5 inches deep. That’s not all, though. As tedious, time-consuming, expensive [...]

Making a casting parts library2014-10-22T07:26:36-07:00
18 09, 2014

Pate de verre: The garden panels project IV


This is the fourth and final installment of the (longer-than-War-and-Peace) tutorial on making a pate de verre panel. In the first post, Carla, Shelby and I designed and made our models. In the second, we "invested" them, i.e., poured refactory plaster over them and made molds, and in the third we filled and fired the molds. This time [...]

Pate de verre: The garden panels project IV2020-03-02T07:44:36-08:00
11 09, 2014

Pate de verre: The garden panels project III


By now you’re probably wondering when this is ever going to end; we’ve made our models, turned them into molds…now what? We fill them, that’s what. In this post I’ll discuss how to choose and layer frit into your mold, and getting them into the kiln. In the final post (next week), I’ll show you how we finished the panels. [...]

Pate de verre: The garden panels project III2020-11-26T12:53:59-08:00
4 09, 2014

Pate de verre: The garden panels project II


In Part I of this series, I gave a (long-winded) description of designing, making and refining a model for a pate de verre garden panel. It's about 5x7 inches and maybe a half-inch thick (or a bit less), meant to hang on the wall. In Part II (this post), I'll talk about making the refractory mold. Part III will cover [...]

Pate de verre: The garden panels project II2017-10-07T18:07:15-07:00
28 08, 2014

Pate de verre: The garden panels project I


Pate de verre combines glass casting plus frit-painting plus sculpting plus moldmaking plus coldworking. Each of those can be daunting by itself; when you combine them, pate de verre can seem awfully difficult. In this project, I'm trying to reduce the complexity for beginners and still come out with an acceptable pate de verre piece. Most pate de [...]

Pate de verre: The garden panels project I2020-06-21T19:13:27-07:00
5 06, 2014

Waxworx 101a: Selecting waxes


Wax ain't just for candles. Surgeons pack bone with it, medievalists seal letters with it, it coats cheeses and shines your car (or your shoes), makes edible Halloween lips and honeycombs and mascara and photocopies and lava lamps and soap and art. It's pretty wonderful stuff and, much as I dislike using it, invaluable in glass casting.'s daunting, potentially dangerous, and very, very [...]

Waxworx 101a: Selecting waxes2018-11-29T16:16:50-08:00
17 03, 2014

dripping in glass


Several of y’all have asked me to explain how to use stainless steel rod to create custom dripping platforms for potmelts and such, so I thought I’d oblige…let me know if you have any questions. Glassists are also scavengers–our favorite stores are Harbor Freight and Goodwill–because we’re always looking for cool stuff to use in a kiln. And the most [...]

dripping in glass2021-06-04T15:51:31-07:00
3 02, 2014

Well, hey there!


Been awhile. Been a looooong while. As a couple* folks have noticed, this blog's been closed for remodeling for more than a year, and the why part is a bit tricky. What I'd love to say: I've been slaving away for months, crafting the jo-block perfect Morganica website, and so now...taDA!!! it is: The world's most wonderful resource for glassists [...]

Well, hey there!2017-07-30T14:55:54-07:00
3 02, 2014

WaxVac frit-drawing tool


WaxVac Hampton Direct $7.99 on Amazon I put earwax vacuums right up there with nosehair clippers and recreational high colonics, so it kinda took me aback when online artist friends said they LOVED theirs. (eeeeeuuuuwwwww) Turns out that if you don't use one for slurping out your ears, it makes a fairly good frit-drawing pen. The one I tried, Hampton [...]

WaxVac frit-drawing tool2014-09-14T11:30:36-07:00
22 02, 2012

Coldworking small castings


Q: Is there a better (faster, cheaper) way to coldwork small glass sculptures? A: Yep A BeCon or two ago, Richard Whiteley, head of the Canberra glass school, said that glasswork fresh from the kiln was only half finished; coldwork was necessary to take it the rest of the way. Ouch. I happen to agree with him, but as much as I love HAVING coldworked, I hate DOING coldwork and seem to be on a neverending quest to avoid it. Right now I'm testing a bunch of machines to see if they can automate the finishing process for small cast glass sculptures, like pendants.

Coldworking small castings2020-11-26T12:52:23-08:00
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