Oriel Hicks,                                                       Glass Artist.


Welcome to my blog


Living and working in the Isles of Scilly is inspirational.... but also has its difficulties!

Getting supplies of large sheets of coloured glass intact from the mainland can be a bit of a challenge, especially in the winter months when the only supply vessel is held up because of rough weather.

I thought people might be interested in the life of an island-dwelling artisan.

Pebble bowls

By Oriel Hicks, Apr 28 2014 07:40PM

Having found that the pebble coasters (gallery page) are just about the most popular item I make, I thought I'd try expanding on the idea. Initially, I fused lots of pebbles together, basically just making a much bigger version of the coasters, but keeping the overall shape square. This I then slumped into a shallow mould to form a dish. (Gallery2 page) It took two years and a lot of stress-breaks in the glass before I could safely say I'd cracked it. (no pun intended!)

I then decided to try making little dishes using just one giant pebble shape, still using frit (glass granules), sheet glass and rods as before. (The huge advantage of using mostly frit is that even with the worst weather on the freight trip from the mainland, the glass can't be broken any smaller than it already is!)

After they were made flat, I found I couldn't buy any pebble-shaped moulds to slump them into, so I cadged some clay off a local potter and racked my memories of school art lessons.... and eventually biscuit-fired my hand-made pebble moulds. A little rougher around the edges than a bought mould, but they seem to work OK.

So far the finished dishes have been successful, though they do come up slightly smaller than I anticipated as the moulds are quite deep, which pulls the sides in.

The biggest problem is actually parting with them! They're such fun to make, each one is different from the last, and I always like the most recent addition to the group the best.

However, my house is now overflowing with all things glass, so some will have to go. (gallery page).

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