21 June 2010

Finding my Marbles

Son's glass workshop in the garage is nearly complete now, he has an oxygen tank, propane tank, a new glasswork torch, the kiln, all the safety gear, from metal blinds (less flammable than fabric!) to the fire extinguisher and flashback arrestors on the gas tanks. He's taking it all very seriously, and wants to do this for the rest of his life!

With the oxygen on board, he can now get hotter temperatures, and make bigger things - like art marbles! (To see the sorts of things he's aspiring to make, check out this site - or search on "art marble" for a ton more.) These are hand-crafted, so getting them spherical is quite a trick. He's improving each time! I thought you'd like to see a few (so we can say we knew him before he got famous ;) ...

This is the largest one so far, about as big as a 50¢ piece (Australian).

This is a little one, can you see the swirl of red beneath the glittery stuff, and the 'turbulent' edge of black at the surface? This sort of design is called a 'galaxy' marble.

A chip of dichroic glass sits inside this one, and looks a bit like an opal.

Another swirly galaxy type marble, with a glaze of frit (the reddish stuff).

And his first attempt at a flower marble!

They're rather tricky to photograph, always best seen when held up to the light, and looked at from all angles! But hopefully this gives you a bit of an idea.

In a couple of weeks he's having a full weekend of private tuition with renown glass artist Peter Minson ... this is basically his tertiary education, and he's launching into it with a passion!


  1. they are fantastic. He really has a talent for this. I tried once to do hot glass and just could not get the hang of keeping the glass hot yet not too hot to but on the mandrel. Exciting for him to have the weekend with Minson. Way to go

  2. How marvellous!! He definitely has found his talent!!!

  3. wow, those are fabulous! The flower one is very clever!

  4. These are great - I'm glad he's found something to be passionate about

  5. LERVE those marbles. How very very clever. Little works of art in a glass ball.

    And your blog is looking pretty spiffy too I must say.

    Yes the new design element is fun - when I figure out how to change the html I might choose and then change a new design.

    Control Freak.

  6. I have three clear glass paperweights with bubbles in them, and three constitutes a collection. Does he have any clear glass marbles with bubbles in them? How much does he charge? If they're flat on one side I wouldn't mind a bit. He does gorgeous work!

    By the way, Lulu is in the news again. http://willowscottage.blogspot.com/2010/06/lulu-lamb-in-lala-land.html

    she's starting to sound a bit like Dolores. I don't think this is a good thing at all.

  7. They are gorgeous! He has quite a talent. I have a paperweight that has some sparkly bits inside and is all swirly. I love holding it up to the light and looking at all the sides.

  8. I have a friend who went from fiber artist to art glass beadmaker.

    Do they use the acronym P.O.O.P. (propane-oxygen, oxygen-propane) there to remember the order of turning on and off?

    (I don't know anything about glassblowing, but my friend shared that and it obviously stuck!)

  9. Oh so beautiful - there is an art marble shop nearby in Sheffield and these are definitely go=iving the ones there a run for their money!

    Love the Kai Meis - and am about to print out your english muffin recipe - we love them and I would prefer to make my own!

    Sorry you are a bit achy - hope it all comes together soon!

  10. Son says the order has recently changed, so the acronym is now GOGO (Gas-Oxygen, Gas-Oxygen), LOL. The things we learn, hey?

  11. How wonderful. I am so glad he has found his thing, and I wish him much success.

  12. Very impressed with R's talent and passion for glass marbles! Thanks for sharing it.
    Love you,

  13. These are SO COOL!! Good for him! I'm so glad he's found what makes him happy.


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