When working with hot glass, it can be formed very organically. I can make beautifully symmetric shapes or pull and squeeze them into the form I’m looking for. By blowing, cutting, tweezing, dribbling more on, trapping stuff in and letting them drip, I can achieve an amazing variety of shapes and sizes.
I am no master glassblower - in fact, most glassblowers frown on my glasses. I cannot make two identically, they are heavy, thick and feature a heart-shaped line where more glass is added, known as a "first years' gather". Naturally, these are the things I most like about them.
I strive to make these tumblers and goblets as organically as possible. I do not touch them with tools until the very final phase, when the top is levered open.
A bubble is blown into the first gather and allowed to cool and harden, then a second gather is balanced while cooling to form the stem or allowed to drip onto a metal table to form the foot of a tumbler. Alternatively, more gathers can be added to form the foot at the end of a stem.
As you can see below, the feet usually take three to four gathers. I am particularly fond of the bubble that is usually trapped in the stem.
These 1st, 2nd and 3rd-place trophies were made for a trampolining competition. They were made by ladelling very hot (1000°C) glass into a graphite mould.
The base features an engraving by a renowned glass engraver showing a trampolinist taking off, and in the case of the 1st place trophy, performing a twisting somersault.
The largest trophy is 180mm high and weighs 800g. The round one was awarded as a team medal, measuring 40mm across.
any theme or pastime (golf, Tennis, bowls, swimming etc). The engraving artist concerned can engrave a figure from a
The engraved base could be adjusted to accommodate
photo for around £100. This was my first attempt at manufacturing trophys. It is relatively simple to make the triangular trophies, but I would love to make more complicated shapes, for instance a tunnel wave with a surfer inside.
The tips are cut and polished like jewels. The brass-based obelisk uses woodsap to form the bubbles which catch the light, it has an angelic face engraved into the top
the twists. Silver sand is trapped and semi-melted into each of the
layers to catch the light as it travels up through the glass.
The silver sand can be clearly seen coating each layer inside the obelisk. A blue glass trail was added to the second gather to produce the spiral.
These obelisks are made on the end of a 1.5m blowing iron, and weigh between 7 and 15kg. The largest one on the far left weighs in at 15 kg and stands 1.5m high. It took three men to lift it to the glory hole (reheating furnace) where it was heated until it sagged, thus allowing me to form
These chunks of glass mark each quarter-hour on a 4ft-square, 10mm-thick, solid copper clock face.
They were made by ladelling hot glass into a wooden mould. The moisture and burning of the wood created this crocodile-skin effect on the cooling glass.
This was a project I put a substantial amount of work into. The book was modelled in clay and then cast in plaster and molochite, before being cast in glass in the kiln. Hot-poured versions are rougher but cheaper to produce.
The surface you look through is a polished, flat slab (30mm thick) and the shape of the book can be seen underneath. The detail is engraved onto the open pages, and shows a map of the local area.
These would be ideal for restaurants, allowing the menu to be written on the inside, whilst the outside is visible from the street. They could equally be set into the ground as paving slabs.
These sculptures were created by myself, Colin Willbourne, Carl Fischer and Craig Knowles as part of the North Dock Regeneration Project. The glass is 50mm thick and was created by dropping large gathers of hot coloured glass into sand moulds. A team of highly-skilled glass blowers were needed to created the array of colours.
This brick was poured into a steel mould in two parts.
The first was ladelled in, then I signed it using a blowtorch and a thin blue trail of glass.
The second ladle was then added to capture the signature in the middle of the brick. (300*300*60mm)