Category Archives: Inspiration

Studio Mascot – Glass Spider

I wasn’t ready to run the kiln yet, but had some time to melt glass.  I got tired of pulling stringers, so I made this little green spider out of glass.  (If this paragraph is gibberish – read below!) The span of the legs is about 2 inches, so it is a pretty big spider.  I decided that I needed a mascot in my studio, so he will now supervise my work.

Studio Mascot - Glass Spider

A kiln is a device used to soak glass at a certain temperature and to cool glass slowly.  I helps to prevent stresses from building in the glass which in turn should make the glass stronger.  I dislike turning it on and then going leaving it while I have to go run errands for hours.

Stringers are threads of glass used to decorate beads or other glass objects.  They are made by heating a glob (gather) of glass and then pulling it into various thickness.  I have about a month’s worth of stringers all ready.

I discovered that the little fellow is pretty durable.  I grabbed one of the legs while it was still hot and my reflex was to drop it.  It bounced on my workbench, but did not break.  Had it broken – I would have been sad.

Rosemarie Hanus usually makes beads, not spiders in her home studio in Bath Township, Ohio, USA. View some of here work as Spawn of Flame (and here).

One World One Heart

I will be participating in the fifth and final One World One Heart event;  this allows bloggers from all over the world to mingle, meet, and make new connections.  It runs from January 30, 2011 to February 11, 2011.

I you are a blogger too, why don’t you join in?  Follow the link above for instructions!

One World One Heart

As part of this, there will be a door prize!  I have not decided yet what to put – perhaps earrings, perhaps a “European Charm” bead, or most likely a pendant on a ribbon.  I know!  A charm bead pendant on a ribbon!

If anybody has any favorites or suggestions, please leave a comment in this post.  Thank you!

Crazy Pictures of My Cars Make Me Smile

For years I’ve taken pictures of my cars whenever I could.  It was easy when on vacation because I when traveling I always had a camera at the ready.  In the past, I did not carry a camera every day, but now I do! So, now I have even more pictures of my cars.

Here is a lovely composition I call Walmart Sunset.  The silver car is mine – the others were just parking lot friends of my car. The photo was taken in the parking lot of the local Walmart (great title, huh?).

 Walmart Sunset

Walmart Sunset

Aside from sentimental value (ah, remember the time we went to Walmart…) I think the photos can be great inspiration for my glasswork.  I would love to capture the fading from one color to the next.  I like how the lights points have the star effect – I wonder how to use that effect?

Here is frost that was on my black car yesterday.  I’d need some wicked stringer control to make a bead like this.  For non glass people, a stringer is a very fine thread of glass that is used to effectively paint on the glass; it takes lots of practice and a steady hand to control.

Decorative Car Frost

I have many MANY pictures of my cars – in store parking lots, highway rest areas, national parks.  Looking at them makes me very happy, maybe because they are inspirational, maybe because they bring back memories, or maybe because they are just silly.

Second Try on the Yellow Bead – It Worked!

I tried the yellow and beige lampwork bead again.  It matched my vision much better than my first attempt.

Yellow Glass Lampwork Bead

Yellow Glass Lampwork Bead

Rosemarie Hanus makes usable beads too in her home studio.  See these beads at EtsyArt Fire, or her Spawn of Flame website.

Finding Your Voice Workshop – Invert Colors

Here is one of my beads from the online Finding Your Voice Workshop.  It is a lampwork glass bead that, well, the concept is great, but the bead is probably one of the ugliest bead that I have ever made.  I have seen others make this claim, and when I see the bead, I think that the bead is just fine.  You be the judge here.

Blue Organic Bead ecstaticPinkDonut.jpgThe assignment was to take a photograph of a bead that we make often and have good familiarity with it.  In a photo editing program, we were to invert the colors and then actually make the resulting bead.  When I did this, I discovered that I have already made a lot of these combinations already.  I did find one to try – a blue bead that inverted into a nice yellow bead.

So here are the two bead photos.  The blue one is the original bead.  The second is inverted – I left the background untouched (because I can).

“Wow!”, I thought to myself – this will be great. Here is the result. I am almost embarrassed to post the picture of the bead, but I don’t think that viewing it will cause you permanent damage. It also might give you a little insight into a lampworker’s not so successful experiments!

The effect that I was trying to achieve was a soft yellow base, with accents of a darker yellow and brown.  My choice of glass colors  not play well together and made mostly mud.  The shape however, is impeccable.  What do you think?  Could this be one of the ugliest beads ever?

My Ugliest Bead Ever (maybe...)

My Ugliest Bead Ever (maybe...)

Rosemarie Hanus makes usable beads too in her home studio.  See these beads at EtsyArt Fire, or her Spawn of Flame website.

Another Cable Bead

Cable Bead with DotsI continued making some more cable beads, and I thought that it would be interesting to add some dots in between the cables on my cable beads.

These dots are made from a special glass that contains a lot of silver.  When worked with a flame that does not have a lot of oxygen in the mix (called a reducing flame), it makes a very pretty, varied pattern.  I put some clear dots on top to magnify the effect.

I really like this! What do you think?  Am I going in a good direction?

Finding Your Voice Workshop – Cable Bead

I am now starting a new round of Sylvie Lansdowne’s Facebook workshop; we are calling it “People Who Won’t Leave”!  This is actually the second week of this round; it will take me a little while to get the nerve to show you my first week’s bead – it was less than aesthetically pleasing.

Our assignment was to use something from our closet to inspire us.  I do tend to wear a lot of solids and textured clothing, so at first I was a little stumped.  Then I decided to use a knitted cable sweater as my inspiration, and to draw the cables with different colors.

Knitted Cable Fabric Swatch

Knitted Cable Fabric Swatch

This is a beautiful stitch and it really makes me want to get my knitting machine(s) out again!  I wanted to make the bead very textured, and to emphasize where the cables “crossed over”.   There were a few technical challenges that I had to think through before making the bead, but I got through that and made my first bead:

Cable Bead - First One!

Cable Bead - First One!

For “extra credit”, we were allowed to make more beads using different color schemes.  Once I had made the first bead, I thought of some techniques that I could do to make the cables more uniform; I tried that on a few more beads.

Yellow Cable Bead

Yellow Cable Bead

I like these and plan on expanding this concept. I even have some more ideas on how to streamline the process – right now, ot takes me a long time to make one!

Rosemarie Hanus makes beads in her home studio. Almost all of them use Silvered Ivory Stringer – Look at these beads at EtsyArt Fire, or her Spawn of Flame website.