Just thought I'd give you a peek into the other not so glamorous side of glass work. Today I wrapped up a long stint of sculpture-base-making (finally). Boy, just when you are kicking back, sipping your coffee, admiring your new work, thinking you're all done... dang.
But this nice simple design comes to the rescue. It's from Paul Tarlow's book on stand ideas for glass. It's an easy way to make a good, modern base for sculpture.
Here's how the project goes:
This is the piece that was under construction during the August studio tour. It was helpful to have a piece in progress so visitors could see how the landscapes are put together. Studio visitors from Whidbey purchased it after it was done. Turns out they are just down the street, how great!
I have some other new landscapes done, too. I just have to complete the panels and bases and they are off to the galleries. More soon!
Whidbey Island Art in the Red Barn
My enthusiastic friend Gina Michel came up with the bright idea to put on an exhibition of local artists during the Whidbey Island Garden Tour. The Garden Tour proceeds provide funding to local groups, including the food bank and the veggie garden at the middle school. Over the past 22 years, the tour has raised more than $300,000 for charities. That's a group worth supporting.
I just finished teaching the first lost wax casting workshop since.. well, more years ago than I would like to disclose. Four kind people helped me dust off the old casting skills and turn them into a fun (and ambitious) workshop.
Look at these hard-working guinea pigs! A big thanks to Dale, Pat, Robin and Sharvari for their patience and enthusiasm. Look at the great work they did!
I've been concentrating on making some free-standing glass landscape sculptures. Here are the new pieces going to the Rob Schouten Gallery in Langley, on Whidbey Island. I love the way they glow when they have light streaming through them.
There's a whole room full of glass in the gallery - all sparkly and vibrant. It's worth a trip to see.
Through the Valley, 17x8x4
Rise Above, 15x7x3
Summer Fields, 15x7x3
Time to get all geeky!
Yes, we all know glass artists are kind of nerdy about technique. Here's a chance to embrace your inner scientist and make friends with glass volume, particle size and heat.
How about a little frit sculpture? Doodling in frit is a lot more fun when you harness the heat! Knowing exactly what/how much/how long will make you positively drunk with power.
Then, make cullet pieces (I call it "erosion glass") with random holes that mimic nature's patterns. Add powders for an enameled look. This will be your new best friend for using up glass scrap.
Plus, take the guesswork out of glass lace. There's only a teeny bit of math, I promise. Face your fear and do it anyway. We'll all help each other out.
Come play in the studio!
I just finished a commission for a very nice person. I always make two versions of the piece, so she'll be able to choose the one she likes best.
These two landscapes recall high mountain meadows, with a bit of mountain range, distant hills, water and dark evergreens.
They are now mounted on "floating" fir bases. I am very pleased with the way they turned out. Fingers crossed - I hope she'll be very happy with the one she chose, below.
The workshop schedule for spring is complete - watch for the newsletter -
All the Best
Steph Mader is a full-time glass artist living on Whidbey Island in Washington State.