need to jump start my blogging again. been insanely busy, lol.
current project. finished grinding tonight. this is a copy of someone else’s work.
I’ve talked on here about the difficulty of taking photos of my work. I think all glass artists struggle with this. Glass is such a visual medium, as is photography. For decades people have been striving to produce the perfect representational photo. I dabbled in photography in my 20′s, and I think I was pretty decent at it, with my old school Yashica and film. But digital photography escapes me. I took a class on Photoshop, but was unable to complete it because I unexpectedly relocated my business, so i am still in the dark a bit when it comes to photography.
I understand the basics: illumination. The piece, especially glass, must be lit adequately to have any hope of proper color reproduction. I have hung pieces in just about every window in my home plus the back porch, the side porch and the front yard, trying to get a good photo. What has worked best for me is this:
1. South side of the house. time of day will vary, depending on the time of the year and the position of the sun. Yesterday was a better day to take these photos (sunny, as opposed to overcast) but I never got around to it. This time of year I like between 11-2pm for the best light.
I drilled holes in the eaves of my house, and inserted screw eyes. Two sets, one for the white screen/deflector and the other for the art. From these I hung lengths of chain, with S hooks.
2. Hang your white screen/deflector. Use what works for you. I made a stretcher frame using furring strips, and stretched an old white sheet over it. I put screw eyes in the outer edges of the top of the frame. The sheet doesn’t have to be pristine. This sheet has a few areas of discoloration and some small stains here and there, but it doesn’t show up in the photos. The important thing is that light must transmit thru the screen, it needs to seem lit from within. Linen, cotton, nylon, all with work. try assorted things, or just go buy a flat sheet.
3. Hang your art and start taking photos.
Today is overcast, the kind of day that is perfect for no backdrop photos. The no-backdrop photos actually look better than the ones shot with the white screen.
There is no single way, in my humble opinion, unless you are blessed enough to have a photography studio available to you. Experiment, find what works for you.
I have learned a few things, as I put together a class for beginning stained glass. I will incorporate them into the next class, if I elect to teach one. Which I probably will.
1. People wait until the last minute to sign up. Always. One third of the class signed up after the deadline, and now I am scrambling.
2. People always want you to cut them some slack on the rules, and offer amazingly intricate excuses as to why you should do so. One lady who inquired into the class wanted to know if I would sign her up, order all her tools and supplies on my dime, and she would pay me on the 3rd of the month, after she got her check from the state. Really? Wrong on several levels.
3. Some choices are hard. Buy locally and risk not having a bunch of colors I want, or buy from the SG supplier and pay outrageous shipping costs on the glass. I went with ordering it and having it shipped. $200 in glass, $150 to ship it. Yes, I am serious. Despite its cost, it was the better choice in the end. I went to the local shop to get glass for the latecomers, and she had half of the color choices I wanted.
I’m going to have to total everything up today and make sure I am not spending more money than I took in (a habit, i’m sad to announce), and re-evalute the necessity of the remaining supplies. Its fun, honestly. Can’t wait to start the class. Sixteen more days.
Well, I have bitten the bullet and agreed to teach a beginning stained glass class at a local community art venue. It should be interesting. The venue itself is newly opened, right across the street from my day job, so the commute will be a breeze. Class starts 2/18, and will go for 6 weeks. I am crazy excited to do it, although with an undercurrent of anxiety. But whatever! lol.
I’ve begun a commish piece for a Valentine gift. Haven’t settled on a title yet. Full Moon Bonsai, Bonsai Moon… I think it will end up the latter, but we will see.
Was able to cut out all the pieces last night, and as soon as I finish this post and shower, I’ll begin the grind. Received the Aqua Flow device, and the Quick-Bit grinder bit, so will install those and see how they work. Looking forward to that. All reports from SGA, on the Aqua-Flow, are very complimentary.
oooh! Stopped by Makin Glass yesterday, to see if they had a piece of green Old Mississippi glass, for the tree. They didn’t have that, but I did find a decent sized piece of that deep teal glass, that i have looked for the past several years. It isn’t made any more, the company that produced it has closed. Kim said someone came in with supplies to sell and that chunk was in the batch. I told her that I would take whatever came in, in the future, that she didn’t want to keep for herself, anyway. Really stoked about that.
ok, kids, off to the shower…
It has been a good year for glass. Lots of great pieces and new experiences were had. I’m going to be revamping my workspace over the next week, and then diving into some new abstract type pieces. Fingers-crossed they turn out well.
I want to thank the newbie followers who have migrated over from the FB page SGA. Delighted to have you. My aim is to be a more frequent poster on here, show more techniques, and experiment more. Suggestions and advice always welcome.
For tonight though, I am couch-bound. Over the previous two days I have pulled the carpet out of my living room, and replaced it with laminate flooring. Including moving all the furniture out and them in. Alone. So… I’m sore, and my hands and knees feel like hamburger. The scary part? Day two is supposed to be worse.
Last piece of 2013…
Wasn’t I just writing about christmas commissions? No? huh. Feels like I was.
Here is the current piece:
Like a doofus, I made the top rounded. I couldn’t find a piece of glass long enough for the entire width, so I domed it. Stupid, stupid, stupid. I vaguely remember lamenting about a round piece in my past, lol, and how I was never, EVER, going to do that again. Should have listened to myself.
I’m using 3/8″ zinc to edge it, and am having a hell of a time. i have cut it up into pieces to get around the curve, and I loathe how it looks. Loathe. It. Just before I was going to bang my head against the wall, a little voice in my brain whispered you were supposed to use 1/4″ zinc on the top… easier to bend…
And so it is. Nonetheless I have stepped away for the moment. Having a cup of fake coffee. Posting here. Once this piece is done, I have to whip out a cross for a client. Just a small pink cross with scrolls. It should only take a day. I am hoping this Walker piece will be done by next weekend. Truth be told, I would like it done by Friday night, so I have the weekend to get the cross done.
Going to try some new thign next year, some abstract pieces. I have several sheets of glass are just beautiful all by themselves. I haven’t been able to find anything that I really want to use them in. So I have decided to try using the pretty piece of glass as the focal point itself, and work the other stuff around it. We’ll see how that turns out.
I love that feeling of being caught up. ArtWalk is over, and I a will start a new project tomorrow (a christmas commission) but for today… I am caught up.
Once again, the governing committee messed up my listing in event guide. It listed my art as Glasswrench studio, and didn’t list that I was pouring wine. The committee didn’t advertise very well either. The event posters were a plain brick red, no art, no color, no imagination. Really disappointing. I doubt that I will pay to participate, again.
I displayed Ganesh, Serenity Amidst Chaos (buddha), Dragonfly on Leaf, Sunflower and Northern lights, all from my own collection. Additionally, I showed Lori’s Lotus, Moonrise, Sunset, Daisies, Sun & Moon, a small dragonfly piece that has no name, Bee, and several crosses. The crosses I did to see how conforming to the regilious bent of the populace would reflect on sales. It didn’t really, lol. Sold one cross. Sold a couple other of the small pieces during the day, as I set up. Ganesh received much more attention that I had anticipated he would. I thought buddha would hog it all, but no.
Received a commission for Sunflowers. I have vacillated between selling the one I have, and making a new one. Last night I had decided to just sell the one I have, it would be totally ok to let it go. I was considering how I could redo it, I had some cool ideas on how to change up the background, make it more intersting. This morning I have changed my mind. sigh. not sure what to do. if I didn’t like it so dang much, it wouldn’t matter, but I do. It hangs i the western window of my LR, and there are times when I just sit and view it, with the light blazing in and all the colors and details in the glass are glowing…
Here are two pieces that I did for the event. I totally stole these pattern ideas from another artist. I admit, it. I am most likely going to keep them, so it isn’t really an issue. Or perhaps I am only justifying the theft.
I cannot decided whether this is a sunrise, or a sunset. I had called it both, alternately. The next piece is surely a Moonrise. The original piece had it over water, but I prefer the mountains, though I am not in love with the glass I used. I need to pick up some additional hillside greens. I might even change it out.
I LOVE the glass of the moon, love the mottled aspect of it. Pics of the event at set up, with Carla, my lovely helper.