Archive for the ‘[blah blah by lisajane]’ Category

Gaffer Calchedony

July 27, 2009

A FABULOUS NEW COLOR : G-109 Chalcedony

In 1856, the Muranese glasshouse of Salviati resurrected the color Chalcedony (pronounced kal-sed-onie), first described in Antonio Neri’s treatise “L’Arte Vetraria” published in 1612. Chalcedony is a multicolored glass that Salviati presented at the famous London Exhibition of 1862 to widespread acclaim. It has pretty much been absent from the glass artists palette in recent times. Reichenbach’s Iris Orange R-108 is an anaemic shadow of what is possible.

Gaffer is proud to relaunch a full blown example of this color system with the usual high standards of perfect compatibility and freedom of stones and bubbles.

The color is built on a scarlet base, allowing a red transparency when blown thinly. Used in thicker quantities it can exhibit all the colors of the spectrum when subjected to different heat treatments. It is perfect for multicolored effects in beads. The color will luster a bright silver/gold under a mildly reducing flame For picking up from a hotbox, have the temperature at around 980oF.

Re the Chalcedony – it is a silver bearing glass and you do the same stuff as you would with what people call Raku from Reichenbach or the silver glasses from Double Helix. Get it very hot, allow to cool right down then heat it up gently and mildly reduce when at a dull red heat. The colours should “pop’ on cooling down again. If it mirrors then you haver over reduced.


The Chameleon is blue when cooled quickly and green when cooled slowly. In order to get the gren to come out heat the glass for a while just on the softening point. Be patient!



Yippeee – And I got second place

July 21, 2009

Flame Lilies Focal beadWicked, First place with Vicky Hunt for the Taniwha and now also second place for my Flame Lillies bead!!!! very proud and very fired up to be creative.

First Place Winners

July 16, 2009

Taniwha_01smallYay, Vicky Hunt and myself collaborated for our entry to the annual Step by Step Beads Magazine competition. Entering the Fabulous sea Monster Taniwha into the Other Beaded category has won us 1st place. You will be able to read about this in the November issue of the magazine and it will be announced on their website.

The Taniwha has been beautifully created with the use of Vicky’s amazing felting techniques and my lampwork beads. Pretty much Vicky’s design so she has been listed as the primary artist on the collaboration.

A wonderful experience and I can highly recommend getting involved in collaborations with artists outside your field as it expands your thinking.

Winner of 2009 NZGBA annual Bead competition

June 9, 2009

This years competition was Translations – Translate your world. I made a world bead which in light of the Antarctic Wilkins shelf recently separating from Antarctica I felt was very fitting. The bead serves as an eco-statement to highlight the fragility of our planet Earth. Global warming and it’s effect on the polar ice caps joined by the important of the existing major currents holds our ecosystems and lives in the balance. The bead is titled Fragile

Annie Rose Bead Week – Great Success

May 21, 2009

Picture10The Annie Rose annual bead week has just gone by and yet again the event was a raving success. Every year gets better. This year we had Emily Lake and Kathryn Wardill as our guest tutors. What a blast.2009.05kwteaching

2009.05eltutorEmily Lake offered a workshop using gold stone, dichroic mosaic and off mandrel looped pendants. What a fabulous workshop thank you Emily yet again for your amazing tutoring skills and dedicated assistance. I learnt heaps. the first bead we had to write our names! with a goldstone stringer. Just when I thought a double barrel name was sexy 🙂 Emily guided us through the exciting world of dichroic and I learnt heaps about how to layer and manage the strips to create a scintillatingbackground. I tried my first marble mmm unsuccessfully, those prongs are somewhat interesting to manage without creating divets in your glass surface. Alas pretty proud of it none the less.


2009.05kwhollowKathryn Wardill was unreal and I urge anyone who has her in your region to go go go. We learnt so many things. the biggest for me was seaming hollow beads. What a pleasure and now my hollows have beautiful even walls all round, thank you Kathryn!!









We also made the most awesome sculptural beads. The workshop was taught using Bullseye. Now typically I don’t use Bullseye as my preference. However, I have found it to be far more agreeable to sculptural beads. We made Goddess beads, although mine got aptly dubbed slutty angels during the workshop. Something about the fish net stockings, large full breasts and her hands behind her back. Erm did I mention the delicious nipples. Yup we also learnt how to use CZ’s. I also made a prostitute bead in bondage although I may rename her as that doesn’t sound marketable, gave us lots of laughs in the class though so all good 🙂 And then let’s not forget the birds on a branch, Kathryn challenged me for 5 but I only managed 4. I must say they worked out better than I anticipated. they have 3 layers of orange in their beaks just because every time I thermal shocked a leaf I’d heat the bead and melt their beaks. So it became a balancing act between leaves and beaks until I Gave up. I was also astounded at the stability of Bullseye to not burn, they was amazing.

 Striped stringers, iris flowers, twisted cane, fish and the list goes on. A week of lots of learning and many beautiful beads. I tried my hand at cold working and now have enormous respect for Kathryn’s beads, sheesh using an engraving tool on a round glass surface was hysterical the result requires lots of practise.If this was not enough to fill a week of fun we also split the days buy Poodling for coffess in the town basin, I kid you not, when you book for next year stay with Annie Rose, a blast for sure.

Madhatters Tea Party (Read Beads of Courage below as well)

April 2, 2009

Thank you to everyone who made it and I’m so sorry that you all couldn’t make it as we had an amazing!! party. The day was fantastic and we had really great weather (thank you Mr Universe, sorry Sydney).

 I have to ask did anyone actually drink any tea? Sporting a hangover I found that no tea pots were used so as a Tea Party I guess we failed miserably. But if we had a bubbles and beer party I think we were somewhat successful. As far as the Madhatter goes we were very successful, thanks to everyone who came hatted out, my hat got ditched early as it slowly collapsed and eventually I had tunnel vision with no peripheral capability… or maybe that was the bubbles mmmm. We even had the caterpillars tent which sported a Shisha that hasn’t been used for many many years, with a dedicated friend on the coal hunt, some kiwi ingenuity and a little garden hose we got the blasted thing puffing, note to lampworkers the torch is the ultimate shisha coal lighter 🙂 (oh yes what happened to all my lighters from the studio people?)

Alas at 2am we were discussing the pitfalls of dolphins, the etiquette of sporting a giant inflatable rat in protests, and the irritation of being in Countdown behind an Elephant with a giraffe at the head of the queue trying to fish out his money without opposable thumbs (I kid you not)… Madhatters tea party a success? Hell yes.

Beads of Courage in full swing

April 2, 2009

What an amazing day we couldn’t have asked for a better day in weather. Did anyone else notice that Sunny Sydney is flooding and Rainy Auckland is sunbathing… I’m just saying I noticed it 🙂

The day started with an unreal show of volunteers for the Beads of Courage program. The Times article has generated a wonderful increase in interest to help us donate beads to the Child Cancer Foundation. The CCF let the children in our know we had the day happening and we had a few visitors come over to see how their beads are made. A big thank you to everyone for the help and visitation. It was fantastic for us as artists to meet children that are directly benefiting from the program. Now us lampworkers have to get melting as we need way more beads than volunteers, don’t clean your beads as we can do that on the day of the next BOC.

beadsofcourageteamsmall The team who volunteered with Beads of Courage a big thanks to everyone it was initiationmuch appreciated. here we have Sean getting initiated by Karilea in the art of grinning and bearing it when a rod experiences thermal shock





here we have everyone hard at work, Debbie and Eva cutting and packing, Frances, Helen, Kari and Liz lampworking and me being totally paparazzi bochappykiddies. Happy children helping Debbie package beads,


All in all a very successful Beads of Courage day and hopefully we’ll have many more as productive as this day, we have packaged up an additional 30 beads so it’s very exciting that we can actively contribute. Annie Rose were very kind enough not only to shut shop and join us (MWHA I love you guys) but they also donated a whole heap of beads for the program.

I am unsure how to handle money donations as we are really running this program as a voluntary program, however we need to pay for boxes for the Butterfly beads. I am looking to negotiate a manner in which you can purchase the boxes from the company who provides them as part of your donations. Stay posted I’ll be emailing you all to ask for your help with this.

Crystal Mountain

March 18, 2009

I just recently drove past Crystal Mountain in Waitakere. It was a fabulous and very inspirational journey. I found the colours and shapes in the crystals and gems to very similar to glass and hope to mimic some of these colours and shapes. Have a look at below images and then look at the post on Sarah Hornik, you’d be surprised what can be achieved when inspired by gems. I also met an amazing kitten Siamese but very naughty. If you visit and catch him he is very loving but as most naughty kittens he bites when he gets excited. I simply blew a puff of air and said no and he became tame as anything, very cute. They also sell strands of gems and crystals so may be worth investigating if you enjoy putting natural stones and crystals with your beads. There is an image below where I wanted to show you how placing too many beads can be overwhelming. When merchandising your stalls, galleries or shops I would suggest less is more. have a look and let me know what you think.

One on One training

March 18, 2009

One on One training is fast becoming a preferred method of learning. It would seem that the ability for students to be trained in their own time on days or evenings that suit them best fitting in with their schedule is far more beneficial than waiting for a date to come up which may not suit them entirely. I have also found that with dedicated tutoring the final results and continued learning are fast tracked due to the one on one time with myself. Inge Chapell is a new comer to lampworking and is a work at home mum. It suited her to come during the week when her son is at school rather than use valuable weekends as a family. Jude Mitchell who is a student of mine from Annie Rose workshops has discovered one on one tutoring to improve her focused skill set and found the results to be more than she expected. I hope to have a long and wonderful future watching these two very talented artists wend their way to glass stardom 🙂

It’s getting hot in here

February 4, 2009

Sheesh anyone in New Zealand noticing this incredible weather we are having?!? I was watching cricket the other day when both my teams South Africa and New Zealand slammed Australia around the field. The Australian commentator said that New Zealand was concerned about their cricket fitness as it’s been so wet over here. Really! where? I can say not here in Auckland. We have had a glorious summer and man it’s been crazy hot and humid. Just loving it. My hair is lighter, body tanned and feeling great walking every morning with such lovely summer weather. This brings me to the hot part, anyone battling to concentrate at the torch, sheesh I know I am. My studio has been a healthy 27degrees and the torch is making me lose my weight in liquid. This weekend we are installing air conditioning, man I cannot wait. Keep you posted on a cool summer forward. Pics will be posted and should be nice and cool next week.