Well today has been an exceptionally good day. Isn't that the way it goes…. Just as you seem to hit a groove it's time to be going. I can't believe there's only a day and a half left!
So everyone seemed ready to go this morning. We met in the cold room and took a look at the things we did our first day. Silly little things really. But, some nice things too. it is what it is when you're at the beginning. Tommy talked to us about beginning to blow and what all he expected for us today. Everyone's energy seem high and solid and mellow and we all got a lot done. We begin with a demonstration on how to gather on a blow pipe, how to begin the bubble, how to begin the shape, how to transfer it to a punti and break off from blow pipe and how to round out that lip and opening. 45 steps to making a cup. Of course about 35 of those are going back to the hole and reheating!
We broke into teams and rotating out from hot shop to cold shop so that we could all get the run through on how to clean up our pieces. How to sand off rough spots, doing any leveling or sandblasting etc. In the hot shop I was first up on our team. I had a good gather but nearly blew out my cheeks and eye balls trying to blow in a bubble. When I finally got one I reheated and came back to blow and BOOM - in a matter of seconds I had a giant fish bowl bubble and then it began to collapse on itself. True fashion for me I must say. And it wasn't really "giant". But it was definitely as big as one of those bowls you see Betas in lining the isles of any given pet store.
Good look for me I know. Luckily this is how everyone looks.
So I cashed out my glass and we rotated turns. I tried again. I got the bubble but my partner forgot to tell me and so BAM - another fish bowl! yea for me.
The video today was another example of organized chaos. It takes place in a small town in India where all the glass comes from this one town. And by looking at the footage, there must be 35 people at any giving time, rammed in the dirt floor, open environment, furnaces, flinging poles with hot glass on the end of them- sometimes 5 or more feet down a level to someone else. Like 10 people all rammed in the little space on top of each other blowing and throwing hot glass. Clammering around like worker bees - or ants- with the fast forward button on .
Back to the shop we go.
Oh- correction on that steel table in an earlier post - it's
called a marvel. And shaping your glass by rolling it on the marvel is called marveling.
We roll through everyone again- I've finally got a nice little bottle going and coming out of the hole- i don't know- it's like I disappeared for a second and when i returned I had clipped the side of the hole and snagged my glass on the wire. So I immediately pulled out and rolled very quickly the trail of glass around my bottle and it look COOL! I saved it- didn't pop the bottle AND I had something that would have taken an extra punti of glass to do. Very happy.
Except that we lost it after the transfer. Tommy's having to be all over the place at three different stations and the timing was off- it had gotten too cool so when my partner was putting it back in the hole, it burst. Another one bites the dust I suppose. I just wonder how many sacrifices to the gods does one have to make?!
Clearly at least three.
We broke for dinner. Landon and I sat on a bench for awhile and talked more about what our lives are like and walked on over to the Walkway for some yummy meatloaf, garlic mashed potatoes and lima beans with hot sauce! It has really helped to be able to replenish with such fresh healthy food. Kudos to Meg for that for sure.
Tonight was open studio and I think every single person in the class came back tonight and we rocked it. Everyone was moving smoothly and quickly with a lot of turn over. One team spent a good while blowing until they got a fish bowl and after all that time popped it. So in the end I was glad mine had happen quickly and not after all that work. I worked in solid glass the rest of the night; creating interior shapes and layering color and working on form. Landen followed suit and did the same but in true form for him- he came up with making flames and floating a square piece of his copper chain mail in middle. I think Tommy was pretty jazzed with Landed today.
Above pictures- Paul marveling - Grace puling the stem on a flower - Dusti smoothing with wet paper- second days work cooling down in the kiln. I have a pretty narly looking flower and the nice globe with the red swirl inside- It doesn't look very big here but on the end of a pole it was huge. The say that it feels like three times the actual weight of the glass. So if you have 3 lbs. , it actually feels like 9 or 10.
All said and done it was a 13 hour day - if you don't count the time I spend loading photos and video and writing and posting. I wish I had more time. I'd much prefer to come back , shower and go to bed but I feel compelled to get it down and get it out there. And t's just not realistic that it'll get done when I get home.
Tonight I stopped on a bench for while and enjoyed the night; a little quite rumbling thunder, nice breeze. The fabrics from surface design out blowing in the breeze. It is quite a magical little world on top of this mountain. Very nice.