Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Mystery Lampwork Glass Shape: How and when it was born!

This stunning bead has been on a crazy journey of discovery with Me on so many levels.  
Keep reading and scroll down the page to view photos.:)

How Mystery was born!

As most of you know , I am addicted to wire and glass and incorporating both mediums to create a stunning Wearable Art Creation is my passion.

Last year May 2009 to be exact, I started creating a life size mask out of wire and Swarovski crystals and have been working on the mask a little each week as I get a moment. I am still busy with it almost going on a year later. The unfinished and phenomenal looking creation so far, stares at me everyday as it sits next to my workspace waiting to be worked on until completed.

In the meantime I have also been giving my other passion heaps of my attention by working on a signature glass bead , which requires constant heat control, and an amazing amount of patience and dedication whilst working at the flame, which are traits I don't possess naturally. :) :)  So all in all my initial bead design is still in the mastering process,as it is a design I want to complete well, share it with the world......BUT I feel I need to present it, in its best form and that , I am not ready to do yet.

As an artist I also suffer from a wondering mind. I have a thousand things going on at once and wish I had a thousand hands to handle all the ideas I have and because of this trait, whilst I was struggling through the original signature bead design in the flame, for some unknown strange but true reason , I just picked up my tweezers and pulled most of my work apart whilst in the molten state.

I just sat there and twirled the mandrel with the remainder glass on it, for minutes on end which felt like hours and thought to myself... "I need to take a break, I need to re evaluate my design.....  I am switching off my glass torch now!!! BUT with my wondering mind I was also thinking at the same time about what I was going to do with my time while I re evaluate my approach to the glass bead , and hence........

What happened next was a defining moment in my life.

I found myself taking a rod of glass instead of switching off my torch and creating my wire mask in molten. It just happened... The two ideas amalgamated into one and I felt so complete in that moment.. Here I am sitting thinking of wire but making the creation in glass.. OH WOW!! 
 What an empowering feeling that was to see this creation unfold right before my eyes.

Here is the mask I made that night. 
This range is particularly special to me because you can see right through the eye section. The open eye sections are 9mm(almost 1cm)  in length and 4.5mm(almost 1/2cm) in width. 
This mask measures 55mm across

I was so hooked in that moment and in awe of what just happened that I just went with the flow and had the most fun whilst doing it.

I then made a 2nd, a 3rd a 4th and so on , on different days... they did not all come out fabulously... I have about 16 masks lying in water that I dumped after 1 1/2 hours of sculpturing.. :( it is not a good feeling to loose a glass bead after working so long on it.

Some more mask beads created over the last few months

I love how unique my bead is.  I enjoy every minute of creating one at a time. 

*** It is important for me to note that I do not work "off"  the mandrel. These luscious beads are created from start to finish on a mandrel. I first start off with a base bead ( some are round, others do-nut shaped and most are decorative too) once the base bead is complete I then start the slow process of building glass to achieve the desired shape and then the fun of creating begins after about 1 1/2 -2 hours of sculpturing. 

I have a couple more to show but have not taken photos of them all. 

The below creation is my chosen one,  which I called "Mystery" and was the one chosen out of the many I created for the NZGBA 2010 NATIONAL GLASS BEAD COMPETITION.

The theme was ELEMENTS.

and this is how I interpreted water as one of the elements.

Water is a mysterious, enriching and intuitive element
that holds the consciousness and wisdom of our very existence.
Our true self is revealed though reflection.
by Lorraine Dowdle

"To understand water is to understand the cosmos, the marvels of nature, and life itself."
"The messages from water are telling us to look inside ourselves."
-Masaru Emoto - "The Hidden Messages in Water"

I hope you enjoyed reading this post. I would love to hear your feed back on my design creation. 
This is a stunning design which is open to endless creative possibilities and one that would bring endless joy to many. Now that I have entered the bead into the fabulous competition and so hope I stand a change at winning a fabulous new torch,  I can go ahead and wear my charm bracelet which I created with many mini masks on it and give my friend her broach pin which she will attach to her scarf.  From bookmarks to earrings to large accent cuff bracelets....... 
This design is exquisite and being able to share it with you all means the world to me. 

To all the lampworkers that would like to give it a go , I am in the process of creating a tutorial which I think you all will enjoy immensly. However in the meantime should you like to make this bead over your torches and show and tell or sell, please give credit too and mention LORRAINE DOWDLE as the creator of this luscious piece of unique art, design and shape. Thank you. 


Lorraine Dowdle
"Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions" Albert Einstein.