Articles by Michelle Rodriquez About Stained Glass Supplies and Fusing Supplies At the Delphi Glass Blog
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Michelle Rodriquez

Michelle Rodriquez

Michelle Rodriquez is always cooking something up in her kiln. She, and her husband Rich, experiment with different techniques in art glass every day, and are happy to share their discoveries with other artists. As a beginner, Michelle writes about her tribulations and acheivements. Read more about Michelle here or visit her website.

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Turning Photos into Glass Projects

How-To
My husband and I recently met a spectacular couple, a genuine cowgirl and cowboy. Besides being fortunate enough to purchase a very sweet horse from them, we are proud to be able to call them our friends. While at their home I learned that her one of her best friends, her horse, had passed away the previous year. "Yoda" had carried her though years on the Rainbow Riders drill flag team, taken her to reigning championships, and safety along countless miles of trails. I wanted to do something special for her, and also try something new for me. I remembered seeing an article in the Delphi newsletter about making fused glass silhouettes from a photograph. While at her home I snuck a picture of her and Yoda sliding to victory, on my cell phone. I downloaded the picture and adjusted it to an appropriate size for a 10 by 10 square plate mold from Delphi. I cut out the image and traced it onto my black iridized COE 90 glass. I used amber streakies and amber clear COE 90 glass, behind the silhouette and border, to thicken the plate with color. I traced my silhouette and began cutting it out with my Taurus 3 Glass Ring Saw . I don't have the special separator blade for the

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How to: Fake a Kiln Rake

How-To
I know I'll never get up the nerve to open my kiln to rake . Instead, I was wondering, can I fake...I mean, rake it? I was recently in Monterey, CA visiting a shop on Cannery Row, where glass artist David Alcala is usually busy at work. The day I visited, he was out (at the Glass Art Bead Expo) promoting his new book and Flexi-Glass . His lovely wife was holding down the fort and I marveled at his landscapes made with fine glass frit. I knew I had a lot of Uroboros frit and powder at home, and it inspired me to try and fake a kiln rake with frit. I laid out a sheet of newspaper, and donned my goggles and face mask . I cut out a 10-inch transparent glass circle, so I would have a double-sided plate. Next, I sprinkled a bunch of purple powder, then white, and purple again, gently patting down the mounds with my fingers. I then added a squiggley line of bejeweled frit. From there, I included Uroboros fine frit in white, purple, then sprinkled on some more bejeweled frit. I used a paint brush to gently move the frit across the plate, blending one color into another. Next came the big move. How was I going to get this thing into the kiln

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How to: Create Faux Opals with Glass

How-To
Before I was fortunate enough to own a kiln, I used to experiment with all kinds of polymer clay using recipes for faux gemstones. It was fun and inexpensive. While giving a fused glass lesson the other day, I said, "Hey, lets try to make some faux opals." So, we crushed up some green and orange, clear backed dichroic glass (from the Uroboros Magic Box ), and mixed in a tiny bit of crushed opaque white glass. We cut two transparent ovals, covered them with Bullseye Glastac Firing Glue , and sprinkled on the frit. We added another layer of glue and piled up some more frit. The beauty of this glue is that you can use as much as you want. I love it for holding the frit on the edges of bowls and glass. The fired pieces looked like opal cabochons! To make the cabochons more opaque, I used my Dremel tool, and ground the back sides of the glass. I did find, however, that gluing the pieces to a ring or pin blank, kind of takes the effect away. This would be an excellent tool if you were using the cabochon in a bezel, like I saw in one of the "how to" lessons, that inspired me. Adding an oval of dark green, like a doublet, behind the cabochon, might create an Australian

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How to: Make a Scrap Metal Pendant

How-To
I am always trying to save my scraps, even if they are metal. I grind my glass, pin backs and bails with my dremel tool (I've found that they stay glued together much better that way), and I started saving all of the grinding scraps. I save the sterling silver grindings in one bottle, and my gold plate with mixed metals, in another. One day, I was looking at some old green sea glass lying on the beach. I thought about folks sending notes out in a bottle, and it being found miles away, full of sand on a beach. I wondered if I could capture that idea in a pendant. When I got home I put those ground metals to use. First, I cut one square of transparent glass, then a smaller square of aqua-green transparent glass, and a tiny square of transparent glass. I sprinkled some of the mixed metal grindings on top of the clear glass, then placed the aqua glass on top of that. On top of the aqua glass, I sprinkled the sterling silver grindings, and capped it with the smallest square of clear glass. Once fused, the mixed metals turned a nice dark color like sand, while the sterling silver grindings stayed nice and bright, just like clear sand. The set did remind me of the s

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Making Pendants and Purse Hangers with the Screen Melt Set

How-To
I'm always looking for ways to use my scrap, so I decided to give the round screen melt set a try. I had mixed feelings about it, because I made the mistake of not following the fusing schedule, and tried to wing it with my pre-programmed kiln. Despite the error of my ways, I ended up with some very pretty glass using two colors of opal art glass scraps. With my screen melt complete, I used a Sharpie pen to trace out my images, and began cutting them with my Taurus 3 Ring Saw . Once I finished the shapes, I put the pendants and purse hangars back in my skutt Firebox 14 kiln , for a fire polish on the slow tack fuse. Some got bails, some wire wrapping, and the others were epoxied to purse hangers . Looking back, If you follow the Delphi directions labeled as users manual in the product description on the screen melt kit, I can imagine the wonderful bowls and pieces that could be created. Learn more about Michelle Rodriquez on her website. The views, opinions, positions or strategies expressed by the author and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, positions or strategies of Delphi Glass. De

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Beginner's Notes: Making Glass Feathers

How-To
The Feathers of the Phoenix Plate is the most complex plate I have made so far . Making the glass feathers and fusing the plate is an 8-step process. It starts with a glass brick that is fused from layers of transparent and opal glass dammed between four kiln bricks . The brick is then sawed in half and bookended, then fused again. After fusing, the brick is sawed into thin slices with a round diamond bladed Taurus 3 glass saw. The slices are again bookended together and fused with a piece of clear glass on top. All the glass feathers turn out beautifully and never look the same. They can be used in jewelry and plates. The feathers are laid out on a black piece of opal glass and fused flat. Then a transparent piece of glass is placed on top, and the plate undergoes another 12-hour fusing. The last step is slumping the platter in the 10" by 10" plate mold , and rubber feet are attached to the backside of the plate. Learn more about Michelle on her website. The views, opinions, positions or strategies expressed by the author and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinio

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Beginner's Notes: Achieve a Stained Glass Look in Fusing

How-To
I saw a free stained glass pattern in the Delphi newsletter that I just loved. I knew if I made it into a stained glass panel, I wouldn't be able to eat off of it. So I set out to create a fused glass platter instead. My husband and I decided to cut all the pattern pieces by hand (thinking about it later, I would have used my Delphi Taurus 3 glass saw ). We sandwiched all the fusible pieces between two sheets of transparent 96 COE glass . In the end, I didn't have the heart to slump it into its mold. I made a channel on each side with fiber paper foam and transparent glass, to hang it with.(I have learned to double the channels for the wire loop.) There were some bubbles due to our handcutting and gaps, so the second fusing got rid of some of those. During the second fusing, I made the transparent channels to hang the piece. Next time I would leave the extra sheet of glass off of the top.I still haven't mastered increasing my hold time during the second ramp up phase of firing. Using 26 lb. cable wire, we can now hang it in the small window of our closet or shed showroom. Visit Michelle's website to read more about her.

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