So Tito and I got to try glass blowing for the first time this weekend – we drove out to beautiful Merrickville for a day long seminar at the studio Kiss my Glass (soon to be Flo, and based in Ottawa). Two lovely people, Bronwin (the studio owner) and Melody were our instructors.
Molten glass is kept in a kiln, heated to 2000 degrees celsius. You have to use a pipe to spin the glass out in a process called ‘gathering’. At this stage, the glass is very much like taffy. Very different from pottery, just imagine reaching into a live kiln!
The heat from working with the glass is incredible. You have to wear protective covers on your arms and even then it’s uncomfortable sometimes. Here I’m just about to form the stress lines that will allow me to remove this piece from the pipe.
Here, the instructor Melody is putting the top on one of Tito’s globes.
Myself, Melody and Tito. We had a really wonderful time, and learned a ton. I’d recommend trying this to anyone. Kiss my Glass may not be available for a while, but Flo in Ottawa should be up and running soon!
One of my favourite pieces of Tito’s, this one is a tree ornament.
One of my paper weights – this one was a neat technique – we pushed into the hot, soft glass with tongs to create dents that would form those air bubbles when more glass was layered on top. The process of rounding it out pulled some of the pigment from the indents to make these lovely ‘stems’.
One of my ornaments – this one barely lived, but I love the colour!
My second paperweight – in this one you grab the top of the glass with tongs and twist it to create the spiral inside, then you layer more glass on top.