What is the Goal for this Kickstarter Project?I would like to create a successful line of work which can be offered at various price levels to support my studio operations. Recently, I have been given the incredible gift of an affordable studio space and this project will allow me to make my glass studio a functioning reality through the creation of a really awesome line of work that is fun and enjoyable for both me and my supporters and the purchase of an essential piece of equipment for the studio.
What are "Seascapes"?"Seascapes" are fused glass pieces featuring a sculptural relief element on the front. The pieces hang on a wall like a picture but are more whimsical than a photograph. While every "seascape" conforms to certain size and depth restrictions, each is a unique tropical landscape with brilliant colors formed completely on the whim of the artist during creation - no two will ever be identical.
Why a Tropical Focus?My father's family moved to the Miami, FL area when he was young and much of his family remains in that area. Even though I spent most of my young years growing up elsewhere, much of my happy vacation time was spent in that tropical region: Key Largo, Marathon, Miami, Homestead... As a result, my lens of my memories focus on those scenes as relaxing, joyful, carefree, and contented and my "seascapes" are a way to capture that and surround myself with that happiness every day.
How will my Dollars be Spent?
I'm glad you asked. I would like to be able to create "Seascapes" as a production line and need the funding to purchase a piece of equipment and to build up a supply of materials to get me going:
$3,015.70 will go towards the purchase of a large, production-capable kiln for my studio so that I can fire several of these pieces simultaneously. This is currently the most time consuming part of creating these pieces and having this kiln will allow me to speed up the time it takes to deliver a finished piece by almost 400%!
$832.00 will go towards the purchase of additional glass needed to make this "Seascapes" a reality: white and clear glass to build the pieces on and frit and powders to give them color.
$79.00 will go towards a grinder to ensure smooth edges, metals, and glues to make the wall mounting systems for the back of each piece. The $79 also covers miscellaneous tiny supplies for this category such as rivets and wire.
$266.00 will cover backer gift creation costs not already accounted for in the costs listed above: packaging materials, etc.
What is the Timeline for this Project?
Once successfully funded, it will take 6 weeks for my new kiln to arrive. During that time I will be able to get much preparation work completed, but the firing will be very slow going. Unfortunately, I cannot guarantee that pieces will arrive in time for Christmas although some might. I can most definitely guarantee that your pieces will arrive by Valentine's Day (which, if you ask me, is MUCH harder to shop for!)
November 15 - December 5 ~ Kickstarter Campaign
December 30 - January 15 ~ Kiln Delivery and Setup
January 1 - February 10 ~ Gift Delivery to Backers
What is the Process for Creating a "Seascape?"
1. Making the Colorful BackgroundsA piece of sheet glass is cut to the particular size/shape piece needed and cleaned.Glass frits and powders are sifted, shaken, smudged, poked, prodded, and jostled over the sheet glass shape in layers to create the range of colors in their many gradations. < Note: I spend anywhere between 1.5 - 6 hrs on the background of each piece, depending on it's size, shape and color complexity. >
2. Firing the Backgrounds to Ready them for Surface ElementsThe backgrounds are fired twice: once at a very low temperature to tack the frits and powders in place, then the piece is cooled, flipped over so that the colors are under the clear glass to give greater depth, and fired again at a higher temperature to melt the piece into a solid mass. < Note: This double firing process takes 36 - 48 hrs. >3. In the meantime... Surface Elements are CreatedOn a small kiln shelf, glass powder is sifted onto a special paper which acts as a shelf relief. Sometimes I draw the whole surface element as one piece, brushing away excess, moving bits carefully into shape, applying a little more, drawing a little more, until the final element takes form. Other times, I've made stencils of individual leaves, trunks, or water vessels and I sift the glass powder over the stencil to create the form I need. These elements have to be created approximately 40 - 60 % larger than their final size as they shrink during firing. Because they are so thin, they can be fired much more quickly than their background counterparts. < Note: The creation and firing of a surface element takes approximately 6 - 8 hrs. >4. Firing the Surface Elements to the Background
After all the parts are made individually, they are cleaned, assembled on a kiln shelf, and fired together at a low temperature so that the surface element retains its high relief qualities. < Note: The assembly and firing takes 24hrs. >5. The final step: Making the "Seascape" wall ready
After a final cleaning, the back surface of each "Seascape" is sanded slightly to give it better adhesion. The metal bracket which will be attached is also sanded. Then glue is applied the bracket and it is placed carefully onto its "Seascape" where it will rest carefully for 24 hrs, until fully cured. < Note: I make each wall bracket myself by cutting a thing piece of tin or steel to fit as needed to each piece, then sanding the edges for smoothness. Ribs are attached with rivets so that the piece sits out from the wall evenly, and finally, a hanging wire is attached. I try to create several brackets at a time as it streamlines the process so the assembly of a bracket and application to a "Seascape" takes approximately 24.5 hrs. >
So the creation of each piece takes 4.5 - 5 days of love and creativity.
Thank you so much for checking out my Kickstarter Project! Please feel free to contact me with any other questions you may have, I'm happy to answer.
- (20 days)