Beautiful paintings done entirely with custom blended glass frit, sheet and stringer
I have been blending my own frit colors for several years and now have close to 2000 blends. But then I realized that I needed some sheets of straight color plates, like for the boat hulls and buildings in this piece depicting the Riomaggiorie waterfront in Cinqe Terra, Italy
So I considered this for quite a while and did some experiments with different techniques. I settled on blending the colors from frit, pouring the dry mixture onto the kiln shelf and roll pressing the pile until it was very flat and compacted. I then fired it with a pretty hot kiln schedule. The new little sheets work pretty well however the edges thicken up. The centers are about an 1/8" thick or less. This is what I want, the thinner the better.
Let me explain that: you might not have noticed but all of my work has a "live edge", that is the edges are not cut straight after building the piece. I do this on purpose, I think the live edge lends a slight amount of spontaneity to the work, like a painting. Which is exactly what I am making, a painting. In order to keep the "live edge" from flowing out over the kiln shelf the work has to be kept as thin as possible. A little running, more like "oozing" is desirable. It causes the colors to run, like paint. I like that, I like it alot.
Once a work is over 1/4" thick it will start oozing. I can control some of the oozing properties, but not all of them. If I can keep the work to under 3/8" thick it is a lot easier to control the oozing than if the work gets to 1/2" thick. Most pieces I make are 5-7 layers of glass. So you can see the difficulty of getting too thick and the need for thinness. Once a piece is over 1/2" to 5/8" it will have to have damed edges, losing my coveted "live edge". So there is the entire explanation of my desire to keep things thin.
This happy experiment has caused me to realize that I can have several types of work; my original way with frit, frit and more frit, and my new way with the custom sheet glass, as seen in "Rio". Then there is the blending of the 2 types which is evident in "Crete Senese", as seen below. You can see some of the oozing in the lower left corner. It looks like it was done with a paint brush. I'll take credit for that happening, but really it did it by itself at 1540 degrees!