This project was one of the more unusual ones that I have ever made, but that's exactly the ones that I enjoy most - the ones that challenge me!
The client wanted to gift a friend with Christmas ornament that reflects a cherished memory... the Pink Floyd song "Two Lost Souls". A primary aspect of this song is a fishbowl with two fish in it....and the client wanted the ornament to LOOK like a fishbowl (as in 3D).
After a bit of discussion back and forth, we decided on "half of 3D" (meaning a flat back)... this would still be a challenge, as I am not a glass blower....
In the first step I cut two layers of clear glass for the "fishbowl base"; in the first firing, I fused this together, as well as the plants and sand at the bottom.
In a second firing I added the two fish, leaving them slightly dimensional so that they appeared to be in front of the plants. Before even cutting the fish, I had to decide what size/font the text was going to be. I printed this text out on paper so that I could use it in the layout for the fish.
Once the second firing was complete, I sandblasted the text onto the front of the glass, filling it with black paint to make it stand out behind the glass "bowl" that would finish the piece.
The bowl was the most difficult part of the project; originally we had decided that I would cut a blown glass ball in half, and then cut off a small slice from the top, to leave an opening. The first cut was successful, but the second, smaller cut resulted in a "running crack" in the glass, making it unusable... time to regroup...
I finally came up with the idea to cut a wine glass to fit... generally you would find a glass and then build the base to fit it... I had to try to do this in reverse - to find a glass that was EXACTLY the size of my base...
I armed myself with a tape measure and visited every thrift store in town.. but I finally found one!
I was able to finish the ornament and get in mailed in time for the client to present it to his friend at their Christmas party - as he said "she went over the top nuts" over it.... and that is my measure of success.
Made in Pahrump, NV
All of our products are handmade
by expert makers.
Karla was extraordinary in the entire process. She kept up the lines of communication constantly, and always had very interesting ideas on how to go about such an elaborate piece of work. Even when a couple snags came to pass, she handled them wonderfully! And the finished piece? Not only did I love it, but the one who received it went out of control nuts! She is still talking about it and said after the Christmas season is done, and the tree comes down, she is going to hang it at her office. Job well done!