Sunday, June 28, 2009

Glass Enameling on Silver and Copper Class

Preparing a brand new class to teach is always a challenge but worth the effort. I taught glass enameling this weekend. We made silver metal clay pieces for Champleve with transparent enamels for the first project and then we switched over to copper and torch fired opaque enamels. It was interesting to see the difference in kiln firing vs. torch firing, each has it’s own advantages. I think I speak for all of us that the little Beehive Kiln we used was especially convenient for enameling, but the torch firing was also very fun.

A few things we learned, I had grabbed pieces that I thought were copper but they were copper plated only and therefore did not work. Poor Senta had her glass pop off twice until we finally figured out that it was another metal underneith. I should have known better when she cleaned the piece and it didn’t look right. The piece pictured above is her Champleve piece which turned out perfect! We also learned that glass takes no prisoners and so patience is required. I was very impressed with everyone’s creativity. AND a big thank you to Rena for her advice to explore torch firing, I think I am going to keep playing with fire now, her pieces took advantage of using firescale as part of the design. Jane and Kelly were new to metal clay, and so the class was a lot to tackle but they made fabulous pieces too.

Glass and metal are really fun to combine, I for one am going to pursue more techniques, well at least that’s the plan anyway.

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