F.A.Q.

Over the past years I have been making Memorial Orbs for people – strangers who seek me out from a Facebook Add or saw my card at a craft fair. And there are questions; questions before, during and in between, here are some:

Q: You can go to school for Glass?
A: Why yes you can, I did. I attended Sheridan College in Oakville Ontario, quite a prestigious school among the glass community. I learned how to blow the glass, the chemistry of the glass, art history, photography, and the business part.

Q: Do you ever burn yourself?
A: Yes. In my first year I experienced a 3rd degree burn on my leg, a few good ones on my arms and hands… if I hurt myself on a regular basis I wouldn’t do it. Burns hurt! Usually it happens when I am careless, or cocky and sometimes just plain over tired.

Q: Is the color tissue paper in there?
A: The glass is gathered at 2120 degrees Fahrenheit – tissue paper wouldn’t…. No. No it’s not tissue paper. Metal colors the glass, copper can be a beautiful teal or a red for instance. And it’s not like paint.

Q: Do you make hearts?
A: No. I only break them 😉

Q: Can I get a deal if I buy 2 or more?
A: I never know quite how to answer this question – do I explain my personal business that running my electric 135 lb furnace & annealer kill the hydro bill or the gas bill from the glory hole. Or the schooling and practise I have dedicated to this beautiful craft. But no, I usually just say “each orb is individually handmade and as an independent glass blower I just can’t do things for cheaper.”

Q: Do you teach classes? You should.
A: Nah, there is no way you can learn in an afternoon. If you want to learn how to blow glass, and you’re not willing to go to school for it then you show up to a hot shop and you do the grunt work. You learn by watching, assisting, cleaning, cold working and then one day the gaffer (glass blower) will let you try. This sport is for the committed, it’s so expensive and not a lot of blowers will let you handle their tools…

Q: Do you make bongs?
A: No I don’t. I blow with an art glass that is too soft and the minute you add heat to it, it would explode. I am what the glass community refers to as a furnace blower, or glass blower. Bongs are usually made of “Boro” glass which is a harder glass that can take temperature shock such as heat and made by torch workers or flame workers.

Q: Can you make me something like So & So makes?
A: No. I can’t in good faith copy another artists idea and sell it. There is a code and I take a lot of pride in the designs I come up with. If you like a makers product, buy it! It makes my day every time some loves one of my pieces, a lot goes into each piece, a lot. It may just look like a cup to you – but for me there was a good 10 on the ground before I got them into the annealer 🙂

Keep asking the questions! I love sharing with each and every one of you what I do, and how amazing it is. Glass is stubborn, it’s testy, and actually rather moody! But it can be so very rewarding too once you relax and go with piece instead of fighting with it. Life isn’t always “on centre”!

Monday Funday!

A few things:

  1. The sun is shining and that always makes for a great start to a day, a Monday, and a week! So yay for warm sun!
  2. The Studio is open today 10am – 4pm.  We’d love to see you.  Lots to choose from for Christmas tree ornaments like Angels, Paws, Trees… And some pretty unique jewellery pieces and glass pieces that make for cool gifts!
  3. My family has come up with a “Handmade Gifts” this year… meaning we have to make our gifts to each other *groan*.  What will I make…. needless to say Emma is being turned on today and the glass furnace should be up to temperature by Friday.
  4. Some available appointments for Memorial Orbs… and by some I mean limited this is a unplanned & short notice for all parties.  I do apologize but I am excited to get back into the heat.
  5. Custom Jelly Fish – you wanted Purple? Email me.  You wanted Blue with red… email me. You wanted Yellow with purple (ew but ok) email me.  I will do some custom but this will require a deposit.
  6. The Johnson pack: Lily 6 yrs old, Gary 1.5 yrs old, Pearl & Karen 4 months

    Vicki added to the pack yesterday so today I will be spending my beautiful Monday getting my fill of sweet puppy kisses from Karen & Pearl.

Red Roses

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it. ~ William Arthur Ward

Today was a great day, weather wise it was perfect, breakfast was delicious, I saw my family, and I got to blow glass.  I was so grateful to my friend Bob McLeod for reaching out to me a few weeks ago when my Emma’s element broke and offered me access to his studio.  What I didn’t expect was to meet another glass blower, Suzi! It’s been a long time, like ten years since I got to assist someone in the hotshop, run ideas by another like minded person – it was just a great day!
I worked on some special pieces today, Christmas gifts to others.  Tonight, reflecting on my day, and the loss that has surrounded my friends I just need everyone in my life to know they are important to me.  That I do love you.

The Sea Star is said to be sensory creatures, nerves that run from their center to the tip of their limbs. It facilitates feelings such as strong, patient, magical, renewing, healing, sensitive, perception to name a few.

This past year with TideLine has been another successful year and your continued love and support is appreciated.  We, Vicki and myself just feel so blessed and look forward to another year creating with glass.  So Thank you! Happy Holidays, kiss your loved ones, and Merry Christmas!

The last of the clear

I dunno if you’re aware out there but there is a bit of glass crisis… Spectrum 96 cullet is a thing of the past.  What is Spectrum 96 cullet you ask? Spectrum is a glass brand, 96 is the coefficient rate of expansion… its the science behind melting glass and cullet is the glass chunks you melt down in the furnace to blow with.  I have a full furnace of clear glass melting right now – like I said the last of the clear.

Friday, Saturday, & Sunday I will be using the rest of the precious clear glass and then charging the furnace with the recycled ugly glass until I can solve my glass dilemma.

If you have been in contact about memorial orbs this weekend is the weekend to make it happen – after I use the recycled glass, the glass will no longer be clear it will be a transparent steel blue in color and not idea for memorial pieces.

I plan on making urchins, sea stars and maybe a few other things… I am looking forward to the this weekend, the warmth, and just being home.  Stay tuned for pictures!

June One

Seconds ready to go back into the furnace and be melted down!

I have had such a great week in the hotshop! The weather has been amazing, the glass has been cooperative, and my mind is relaxed.  What else can a girl ask for!
Glass is becoming more and more harder to find.  The glass I use is no longer made – and most would think its just glass! I have some old wine bottles you can have.  Unfortunately it doesn’t work like that.  So – instead of panicking (again) I have done what I should have been doing all along was sort my clear, and recharge as I go using half new glass half upcycled.  But anyone who knows me knows I am a bit of princess.  Regardless, I spent a day sandblasting the seconds and charged the furnace with the used glass.  Not only did it clean up my shop a bit, it freed up my favorite bowl and has allowed me a few more days of blowing with nice, clean clear glass!

 

 

 

My week has been spent making Tidal Balls, some pieces for some Garden Art, and well terrariums.  I want to create functional.  I wanted something new.  Sometimes – a nerd moment I will walk the garden centers, and look at all the beautiful plants.  I even bought a few for my balcony when I saw the air plants.  Then I found myself on Pinterest.  Anyway – I tried it.  I like it.  I call it the TidalPus.  You know like the Octopus but Tidal for Tideline… I’ll stop.  These plants are misted a couple of times a week – no dirt, no fuss.  My kind of plant!
Want to see them in person? Vicki and I will be at the Nanoose Bay Art in the Garden Show June 23 & 24!

 

 

Colored Memorials.  I did the photo in B&W to respect the family. 

What else have I been up to? Memorials.  I have met some beautiful people that have shared their stories of their loved ones with me.  I feel grateful I can create these treasures for people and maybe help a bit with the healing of their loss.
This week I did some with color, and some without.  All of them turn out beautiful.

Loop this

What a great past few weeks in the hotshop! I made a lot of tidal balls… if you’re not close to Campbell River I did bring down a fresh batch to the Salish Sea Market in Bowser.  They are on display there with so many other talented artists! Great handmade LOCAL! gift ideas there! Stay tuned for more venues!
We will be attending Christmas at the Lodge & Holiday Market November 25 & 26 10am – 4pm at the Filberg Lodge in Comox! We will be sure to bring our new sparkly candle holders (or what is left of them), Driftlines, Christmas spiders, Tidal Balls, and sea stars to name a few.  So save the date!
What’s new you ask!? Just a new spin idea on an oldie… rhinestone urchins? I work in retail so I see the trends before the hit the salesfloor – I also like to design so I research trends, ideas, etc.  I’ll even go outside in the nature and study things like the beach – ask questions and try and answer what makes this piece of kelp beautiful.  It’s a thing I don’t do often enough lately but I do it to inspire me.  Anyway – sparkles are in.  Jewels are in.  So I tried it.  I like it.  I’ve only made a few – and will put them on display at the Filberg and see what the people say.
Anyway stay warm! I am spending the day in the Hotshop today and then turning Emma off for the rest of the year – bitter sweet.