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Mica Vessel Class – Student Projects

metallic mica on textured recycled glass

Thank you to all of the students who attended the Recycled Glass Mica Vessel class at Kimball Art Center on March 22!  What a fun afternoon, and the student work is gorgeous! Continue reading Mica Vessel Class – Student Projects

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Recycled Glass With Mica

Recently I discovered the wonders of mica.  I had no idea what a versatile and amazing and useful tool mica is to have in my collection of fused recycled glass ideas.  Here are a few of the pieces that I’ve made recently using various types of textured glass and a mica solution.  The mica on all of these pieces is painted on the surface of the glass and fired, most are a slump firing.

Enjoy and do let me know what you think, and, as always, thank you for reading!


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Q & A Monday 9/30/13

Jodi McRaney RushoLots of readers send me their questions directly, but there are a whole host of questions that get asked anonymously.  One tool that I use to help decide what to write about is Google Keyword Search statistics.  Now, alas, Google is discontinuing the service, so as a tribute and a farewell, I’m pulling questions from the Keyword Searches and answering them here:

  • Q: how to cut a wine bottle with a tile saw
  • A: It’s amazing how many times this one comes up in searches.  I have a couple of videos about cutting bottles with a tile saw, but I think people need to see it a bunch of times before they feel comfortable giving it a go.  The basic things to remember are:  go slow, use lots of water, and the quality of the blade is critical. Continue reading Q & A Monday 9/30/13
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Bonneville Elementary School Artwork

Recently, my friend Darby (aka A Bourbon Gal) contacted me with a request for artwork for her local elementary school.  The problem?  Super tight deadline and super small budget.  After tossing a few ideas back and forth, we came up with a really great solution.  I had a bunch of left over prepared art glass supplies from the Glass Mosaic project earlier in the year. Continue reading Bonneville Elementary School Artwork

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The Case for Desperation in Creativity

It all started out innocently enough; we were trying to figure out a way to modify the Self Portrait Paperweight project for the Hawthorne ELP Artist Residency.  Originally I had planned to have the kids make a clay positive face, then pour a plaster/silica mix mold for each one before doing a pot-melt with recycled bottle glass.

The hassle factor was high, as were the potential material costs. Then it dawned on me, what if the kids made a reverse portrait with clay, I put it at the bottom of a standard size mold, and the glass melts down in.  Reusable molds (in this case, extra deep terra cotta saucers, of which I own exactly 3, but which are cheap and readily available).  Problem solved!

Except no one makes the saucers anymore.  When I bought mine they were everywhere!  I discovered this after submitting my final proposal.  Nowhere in town, nowhere on the web. I’m sure I could have found them eventually, but not in the quantity that I needed (30).

So, to further complicate the process, I decided to make the saucers.  It’s only 30 or so, I have a ceramics kiln and how hard could it be.  Turns out, not very hard,  I made some nice octagonal saucers that fit on my kiln shelf nicely.

The first class to make the portraits is the 6th grade.  They have a great time, understand the concept and do good work.  Back to the studio go the faces.

But there is a problem, what is going to become known as the infamous gap.

The Problematic Gap Continue reading The Case for Desperation in Creativity

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Hawthorne ELP Artist in Residency

In just two weeks I will be starting a project that I’ve never done before.  I have been offered the Artist in Residency at Hawthorne Elementary in Salt Lake City.  The school has 250 kids, grades K-6.  I usually teach just one class of kids at a time, so expanding to include 7 classes of varying age and ability of kids has been very exciting.

The theme of the residency is Using Glass Art to tell the Story of YOU.  Each of the four projects that we will be doing will tell some part of what is unique about each persons life.  Three of the projects will be recycled glass, one will be fused art glass.

Continue reading Hawthorne ELP Artist in Residency

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Clear the Air Challenge Awards

Recently, I was lucky enough to be able to make the awards for the top three companies for the Clear the Air Challenge.

Step 1, Proposal:

The proposed award would be made with 3/8″ thick recycled glass bent into a gentle curve about 12″ wide by about 6″ high.  We would use the logo of the program and do a pseudo-screen print on the glass.  The winners names would be engraved on the front after the ceremony. Continue reading Clear the Air Challenge Awards

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Performing in Vegas

Not many of you know I recently had a brief performance in Las Vegas on the strip… at the convention center… as a booth assistant… at the ACRE show.  Yea, okay, it isn’t broadway or anything, but it was still pretty cool!

I went as slave labor with my dear friend Colleen of Turtles Wings Art wages payable in cocktails.  This was both of our first experience at a wholesale trade show.  Colleen, obviously made of sterner stuff than I opted to actually have a booth, whilst I just went along to watch.

Here is the view from our hotel room on the 10th floor of the Las Vegas Hilton.  Crazy blue sky like a giant inverted bowl.

and the other direction: Continue reading Performing in Vegas