The painted glass vase project continues

And with the delivery of some rather stunning fluorescent colours I can begin work on this new sideline – the painted Swarez vases.

All the Kapow! of one of my original paintings but condensed into a smaller and more manageable form. All hand-made glass, all hand-painted by me and each one hand-lacquered twice.

At this stage I am very aware of the need to establish a proven set of techniques that convey what my full size paintings are about but done in a much smaller size. I figured that this would be a great precursor to the proposed garden sculptures which I hope to bring online by March next year.

So this is phase two of the project. At this point I am looking to refine the properties of the paints; they are still my trusty enamel paints but I have had a version of them specially manufactured for applying to glass – and like all new materials they need to be thoroughly tested and used before I can feel totally confident with them.

All shapes and sizes

I have around a dozen carefully chosen glass vases to practice with at the moment; each one presenting its own challenges in terms of size, shape and design. In order to fully extol the virtues of each one it’s become necessary to assess how the paint will flow across each of them first before committing to paint. From the first few it has become all too evident that the wrong amount in the wrong place leaves a dreadful sludgy trail of disappointment behind it so getting the flow rates accurate is pivotal.

The horizontal and vertical methods

Now that I have a proven technique for applying paint across a curved horizontal plane I can go about creating a number of vases that have sideways movements instead of the expected up and down ones. Don’t get me wrong, the use of gravity is fine, and makes for a very interesting series of organic shapes and flows, but in order to really set this collection apart I need to do something different – so the ability to beat gravity and get the paint to move across the horizontal, without falling down, is critical.

And I have such a method now, thanks to the recent Scrumpty sculpture project for the Rugby World Cup Trail 2015 in Gloucester. It was here that I succeeded in applying paint without it falling off. Sounds a little elementary but it was a breakthrough nonetheless.


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