Dropped Glass Vessels
Updated: Sep 29, 2020
Below are a few photographs of some of my dropped glass vessels.
The process to create these vessels are to first create a 'blank' of glass. Layering up and positioning pieces of glass which are then fused into a thicker piece of glass. The colours and type of glass is equally important to consider.
The blank is then fused for a second time over a ceramic 'ring'. Carefully heating the blank up gradually so as not to shock the glass. At the top temperature the glass begins to melt through the hole in the ring and this is when my nerves jangle as I check the glass every few minutes to monitor the drop. At the point it kisses the bottom of the kiln, I am required to quickly move the kiln programme along so that it gradually cools, again carefully not to shock the glass by cooling too quickly. Finally the anxious hours as it cools to room temperature and the programme finishes.
The last stages to complete the piece are to carefully remove the rim of the vessel. I have 'lost' several as the glass shattered! There are several different techniques for removing the rim - I've tried several and just when I think I'm getting the hang of one, I have a disaster. I think however it's about having confidence.
Then the cold working stage. For these pieces, involves grinding, smoothing and polishing the rim with silicon carbide grinding grit - endless circular motion to grind down the edge smoothly. Then finishing the piece with diamond handpads and polishing the edge.
Any glass artist will talk at length about the hours of cold working a piece by hand. The final result is always worth the effort but blimey it's not a speedy process to get a great finish.