I've already got Cabin Fever. Because of this amazing blizzard that is attacking the northeast, I've been in my house since yesterday noon. The snow is still blowing horizontally, with the wind chill at -14 degrees, and is supposed to continue all day. I won't be going out for any extended time anytime soon. I did go out this morning for 10 minutes to walk my dog, (how's that for dedication?) but I'm back inside now. Glad we are safe and warm. If I don't think about not being able to move about town when I want to, I'm okay. I'm kind of a restless guy by nature.Which brings me to being an astronaut. Stuck in a capsule, or even the space shuttle? Are you kidding me? I mean, I'd love to be walking around ON the moon or ON Mars, but getting there would be the challenge. Confined to such a tight space, for days on end. Drinking Tang? Fuggedaboudit. I guess I could take Space Walks now and then. Walks to nowhere. No, I'll take my circumstances right here right now. Where's my dog? It's time to go out.
I often imagine what my dog, a 9 -year old golden retriever named Willie. would sound like if he could talk. Without a doubt he would sound like Sean Connery, or maybe Cary Grant. I can very clearly hear him introducing himself to a female dog on the street with, "The name is Bond, Willie Bond." And Willie would look most excellent in a tux, sitting at the Baccarat table, winning yet another hand.
Of course, if he did sound like Cary Grant, Willie would be perfect in the Hitchcock thriller, North By Northwest. As a very fleet-of-foot Golden, Willie would have no trouble outrunning that crop duster that almost nailed Cary. And he would deliver his lines with that Cary Grant "Cool."
I don't remember many of Grant's lines by heart. And none from North By Northwest. The only line of I do know is his repeating "Judy, Judy, Judy." Yeah, Willie could say that. That's what he'd sound like.
Boy, am I lucky. I just returned from a week-long class at The Studio at The Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, New York. Davide Salvadore, a glass maestro from Murano, Italy, was teaching a course in murrine making, and how to pick them up on a blowpipe to make a piece out of it.
Murrine making is a technique that I use a lot, so it was a natural to take his class. He is a very generous man with his time and knowledge.
To make murrine, you bundle rods of color in a pattern that you choose, heat it all together, and then pull it like taffy, into a long, maybe 15 feet, rod. It then goes into the annealer, and the next day you slice it into 1/2" chunks. The cross-section pattern is what you're after.
I'll explain more and show some examples in later blog posts. Suffice it to say, the technique is tricky at first, but the patterns and combinations of colors are only restricted by your imagination, and Davide Salvadore is a master at this technique.
Come on over to Rockport on Thursday, for the opening of what is always a great craft show, The Work of The Hand. It's put on by The Center For Maine Contemporary Art. and is held in Pascal Hall, 86 Pascal Avenue, Rockport. I'll have a bunch of new work, so I hope to see you there. The show runs through Monday, the 10th.
Today was a great day at the Craft Fair at Ft. Andross, in Brunswick, ME. I'll be there on Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. Hope you're there. Sold quite a few ornaments, and bud vases, but still have some left.
Special Sunday prices!
And if you do come, could you bring me a cup of coffee? Milk, no sugar. thanks.
I'll pay you when you get there. There isn't a coffee place nearby. Not good.
It's never too early for sales. Remember, this is the Great Recession.
Besides, get a jump on your friends who will be overwhelming me with orders any second now. You might get left out with no new hand- blown glass ornaments from me to give to your dear friends and family. They will not be happy.
Therefore, order now! Don't delay. Don't forget.....I'm selling internationally. The world is my oyster. I may have an ornament shortage.
Check out my Etsy store to the right.
I'm collaborating with poet Leonore Hildebrandt to create an installation piece that will be featured in the 6th annual Belfast Poetry Festival. 10 poets and 10 artists were paired up to create art and poetry specifically for this festival. Had a chance to use my Conversation Pieces, the glass cartoon word balloons that I'm making. Took the first line of a possible poem that Leonore wrote and installed it in the gallery. The final dimensions are about 8 feet wide and 8 feet high.
It's been a great year for our candy corn crop. 4 Acres all in full bloom. Hired extra hands to harvest. I'm not getting as much per bushel since it's such a bumper crop, but that's okay with me. We've had tons of sun, enough rain, and the corn bugs have not been too ravaging.
My root cellar will be full at least until Thanksgiving.
This is my favorite time of year, in case you can't tell, as candy corn is my favorite food. You get all three major food colors in one corn! Don't be fooled by imitators that put brown into the mix, to simulate chocolate. Chocolate! In candy corn!
I've got some Candy Corn Recipes that I'll share with you this week. My Aunt Tess made a Candy Corn Chowdah that was awesome. With Candy Crackers. That woman could cook.
I don't know where she got the idea for the candy corn meatloaf, but she pulled it off. Mashed potatoes , gravy, Jujy Fruits for dessert. Brilliant.
Well, gotta go clean out the Combine. More tomorrow.
This is two layers. You can't see underneath, but it's strands of white glass.
The top is celadon with an accent stripe of cobalt blue.
About 9 inches in diameter.
Tomorrow, I'll place it on a mold and slump it into the bowl shape.
I'll show you tomorrow.
In the photo, the small squares surrounding the round disk are pieces of glass that I use to hold down the kiln paper that the disk is resting on. If there were no weights on the paper, it would curl up around the piece when it gets to firing temperature.