Chakra Heart

An early springtime for Belgium brought sunshine into my atelier recently 🙂 I made the best of these lovely rays of light and experimented with glass hearts, amongst other unusual shapes 🙂

My mission on this occasion was to continue playing with the Rubino Oro glass rods (testing the propane/oxygen mix and encasing it in clear glass), and, learning to create solid hearts. Aside from this, I took the opportunity to create a few heart chakra pieces too (introducing green glasses).

Atelier feeling the rays!

New visitor to the atelier… getting braver every day!

I’ve also attracted a new visitor to the atelier – a very cute fluffy cat – who seems to be getting more daring each day the atelier is open! Yesterday, (s)he stood by the open door and meowed. As much as I wanted to offer a tickle, I was working at the torch with my mandrel and rod! Let’s see how this new relationship develops!

Time out for a photo!

I took time-out to demonstrate the special Model 6000 Wraparound blue shades I use to protect my eyes from sodium flare and UV (these are for soft glass use only), and I keep the clear safety goggles on my head ready for any cleaning up/cutting up glass.

I also have some Model 901 Green Ace shade #3 wraparound glasses for kiln usage and when there is more glare than usual at the torch (has IR protection, as well as sodium flare and UV protection, and ideal for hard glass use). Recently, I also bought myself a pair of Phillips Ace 202 lens clip-on lenses too.

Spare glasses are always a ‘must’. They also come in handy for visitors, who should be advised not to stare into the flame without wearing them!! 🙂

I also wear fingerless kevlar sleeves to partially protect my hands and super warm jacket sleeves (this is a divers jacket… very expensive so I don’t want burn holes!!).

Handpulled stringers, ready for molten painting action!

The day before, I’d prepared some hand-pulled stringers and mandrels. I leave the mandrels and bead release to dry in the warmer kitchen.

(If the environment is too damp/cold for drying, rust particles seep through into the bead release and they can’t be used… this only seems to occur when you leave them to dry for several days, which I no longer do! Lesson learned!)

And so to the hearts! These are my first attempts to create sensual fleshy hearts; not as easy as they look, but I’m sure with practice these will become rather nice! The Rubino Oro seemed to react very well on this occasion, unlike some of the surprises I experienced before. I was careful with the gas mix and kept a watchful eye.

Colour-wise, I was inspired by the ‘watermelon tourmaline‘ (a type of rubellite crystal), which is perfect for the heart chakra. Since I don’t have one of these gorgeous crystals, I figured I would satisfy my desire in glass 🙂

Handful of hearts!

Heart detail….

Wanting to play with one of my recently gifted new tools – a tweezer masher – I created a few apple-style shapes. I rather like these… perfect for holding in the hand (as an energy booster!) or as a bracelet. Will create more!

“Apple of My Heart” hearts!

No idea what was going through my mind when I created this 😉

Heart morphed to bone!

Using another new tool – a brass shaper – I created some new shapes. Now this is FUN cutting into the molten glass as you’re twirling it. I was inspired by the stones at El Torcal.

Carved beads, created using a brass shaper whilst molten

First hollow bead attempt!

I wanted to attempt my first hollow bead (unlike those I did in glass class, which collapsed at the critical point, like a soufflé!). This one worked, thankfully! Next time, less dark glass would help to see the beauty! Cleaning this was tricky too, as the bead release swims inside when you use the Dremel (part of coldworking).. took some time to dry out too!

And I didn’t want to leave out my little ‘warm up’ beads, which I create at each session just to get my hands ready and to test the bead release, etc.

Warm-up beads

And at the end of the session, as the glass pieces are annealing in the kiln, my torch can cool down and take a long-deserved siesta 🙂

Cute GTT Cricket torch taking a siesta

Effetre glass rods used: The opaques are – Pink (#1261), Light Pink (#1260) and Pastel White (#1204), Black (#1064) and Light Red (#1428), and; The transparents Grey (#1048), Clear Special (#1006), Light Grass Green (#1020), Medium Grass green (#1022), Dark Grass Green (#1024) and Olive Green (#1025). And of course, Rubino Oro (#1456).

Originally published: Tuesday, March 18th, 2014 at 16:34 in Atelier, Inspiration


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3 Responses to “Hearty sunshine on glass!”

  1. Jude says:

    WOWSA – the hearts, apples and the “rather phallic” piece are totally wonderful. Love the shapes and colours. The colours in the apples are exceptional.

    Yayyy to the kitty visit too haha

    Great to see your progress and mastery!!

    Look forward to seeing more.

    Peace and light XxX

  2. Mick says:

    Like the hearts!


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