Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Breaking the Rules

In progress 8x10 fused glass

4x4 Juicy Pear fused glass

When it comes to life, I don't break too many rules.  However, with art I seem to go out of my way to break every hard and fast rule out there, especially with glass.  Sometimes this is due to my own rebellious nature and I want to see for myself what will happen even if the "experts" advise otherwise.  For example, most glass artists are told never to open the kiln until it is at room temperature.  I break this rule A LOT.  Most of the time I do it with test pieces or experimental things and I don't want to waste any more time than necessary waiting for it to cool.  I don't mind if test pieces aren't properly annealed since they are just for my own learning, so I fling open the lid and enjoy the heat warming up my studio.  Sometimes, I over fire things in my kiln because it is old and doesn't have a pyrometer.  Unless I sit with my eye glued to the peephole, it's hard to judge when it will be ready.  Again, I use this kiln for my test pieces and experiments, relying on my other kiln with the confusing digital controller to pay attention for me.  Today was one of those fun days where I had some really cool results from my lack of attention.  I'm going to actually try to repeat the same mistake deliberately to see if I get consistent results, and if so, I will share the outcome, but suffice it to say, it's something I haven't seen out there in the fused glass community so it could have been a one time fluke.

Here are some of my works in progress from February.  I'm saving my pennies to buy a bigger kiln.  I'm limited in sizes under 8x10 for now.  Many of the pieces I did in Jan and Feb were based off of a painting I did in oil.  It was easier for me to try to achieve the painterly look by using a subject that was easy for me.

I promised to post some of my piles of tears, and the piles have grown.  I meant to actually finish some of them before posting the piles, but I keep moving on to new projects.  Likely these will languish in my studio for some time........

one of many of my piles of tears

For those of you that are wondering if I will ever paint again, the answer is yes (I'm even taking a one day workshop in a couple weeks) but I  never anticipated this winter would run into March and still be in the negative digits.  My paint is in my barn studio and the cool temps are not conducive to good paintings and it takes forever for them to warm up to proper consistency.  For now, I'm quite content "painting" with glass and breaking all kinds of rules in my studio.   Speaking of breaking.  This piece befuddled me.  It shouldn't have broken.  I can't figure out what happened.  Anyway, it was a test piece for a larger one of my studio.  I'm happy with where it was going so I will definitely be doing a larger version.  I've been experimenting with a lot of different techniques and materials but I plan on doing some series as soon as I get my glass order. I'm liking the printmaking look of the one below so I plan on playing around with that a bit more, but my main goal is to achieve a look in glass that I do in oil painting.

I am applying for summer art shows and will be at all of my usual haunts and hopefully some new ones .  Expect to see some very different work this year, and a few surprises too ;)


  1. This is so much fun to see, Kristan!!!! Love the last look, it is a shame. But you could just call it modern art.... and say that is what I was going for it is such a cool piece!

  2. Oh but love, love, love the still life, that is amazing!

  3. I have no idea how glass works, but it looks exiting! =)