Creating A Faux Glass Rake With Powder

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       I know i'll never get up the nerve to open my kiln to rake but I was wondering, can I fake...I mean, rake it?  I was recently in Monterey, CA and revisted a shop on Cannery Row, where glass artist David Alcala is busy at work. Not in his shop, but at the glass 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 alot of Uroboros frit and powder at home, and it inspired me to make a giant ornamanet plate for Christmas cookies. I thought it might get crazy, so I laid out a sheet of newspaper, and dawned my goggles and face mask. I cut out a ten 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 thought, maybe I should mix it up, so I 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 my paintbrush 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? I remebered watching a forensics documentary where they sprayed fingerprints in dust with hairspray. So from a distance, I sprayed a light coat over the plate. I wondered if it was going to devitrify the surface, but it didn't. I safely moved the plate to the kiln, and almost no glass fell off of the edges. I swept away some particles from the edge of the plate with my paintbrush but not before thinking of Chihuly, making those wild drawings during a glass exhibition. So, I made a small matching pendant. After, the plate was slumped into a 10" plate mold from Delphi. What fun it would it be to have a family project where everyone makes a holiday ornament plate for Christmas dinner!

Happy fusing, 

Michelle        

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