A few months back I embarked on painting classes to dabble with watercolors and acrylic paints. The watercolors were by far my favorite and a medium I’m certain to return to. I’ve also painted pottery several times at our local studio – Crackpots – and love each time I get to create a new piece. This hubby knows this, which is why he gifted me for Christmas this past year a gift certificate to go to this very studio to unleash my creativity.
It was perfect timing that my mom was here for a visit last weekend that while walking downtown the Crackpots studio pulled her inside. It was like seeing a kid in a candy store as she perused the shelves full of tiny treasures just waiting for creativity to bring life to them. And then we both found the glass fusing projects. It was a medium I’ve never done before and it immediately pulled us in. The ideas were endless.
With a 8-inch clear glass plate in front of us we grabbed a bucket of tools, some pieces of glass and were given a short introduction as we embarked on our project. For me it was the inspiration of aspen trees that lead me, and for my mom it was a mountain scene with a prairie full of flowers.
Now let me remind you I’ve never cut glass before. I didn’t really know what I was getting into so I heeded the warning and put on the fashionable clear glasses to protect my eyes. I began with the scoring tool to cut the long strips for my aspen trees.
It’s not as easy as you think. The scoring tool cuts them pretty straight and trees in nature are not that straight. I used breaking pliers to make them a bit imperfect, and another set of pliers that carve away chunks. (Sorry I don’t recall their actual name!)
Little by little I moved about the pieces of raw glass cutting and securing each piece with glue to hold it in place. I also used frit glass for the base of my grass and tree background. Frit is small tiny bits of glass that you apply with a small spoon an then poor frit glue over the top to secure. Layer upon layer I added more color and depth.
After almost three hours I finished my masterpiece and hoped the end project would turn out as well.
My fear was that it would all melt together into one giant blob of color that I wouldn’t even recognize.
Thankfully the finished design turned out beautifully and is now on display in our family room. It’s certainly an art I’ll try again!
I’ve always had a bit of an artist side. At least I like to think so. I remember art class in high school fondly using pointillism to create an entire design using only dots. And even though the smell was a bit harsh, I loved using the wood burners to make a picture come alive.
But let’s face it high school was a long time ago. Trust me – a long time ago. And it’s not like I’ve kept up on my painting classes since then.
A group of us from work and other nearby friends set up a painting class at The Brew in Firestone. If you haven’t visited this quaint little coffee shop you need to. They have the best chai – it’s my favorite since I’m not a coffee drinker. But this time of year you need to try their peppermint cocoa! And while you’re there, let them whip you up one of their fresh crepes. You’ll want to return to try every single one on their menu!
The owners at The Brew have partnered with The Cruisin’ Canvas – a local lady who will bring the paint parties to you – to host numerous paint parties each month. With the Christmas season right around the corner we asked to paint a wreath and Tami graciously designed her first one just for us.
With paint brushes in hand we started with our red background before plunking green olives onto our canvas. Tami said the paint brush will guide us. Well, some of those olives are a little misshaped!
The bow was next and the laughs began throughout the room as we were certainly not bow people.
Finally, we were shown how to add highlights to our olives which made up the wreath, and then a touch of red for the pimentos.
In the end I had a blast, especially hanging out with friends. But now I want to do another class!