Decorative Glass Blowing with Chad Balster April 11-15, 2022
Decorative glass techniques are essential when learning to handle glass as a medium. Often glass items are produced for their beauty and charm, especially around the holidays. This beginner to intermediate class will focus on these techniques to produce objects of beauty that are simple, quick, and reproducible. No glass blowing experience is necessary but it’s helpful. Students will start with marbles and paperweights, focusing on handling solid glass, tool manipulation, as well as color applications. Next the class will move on to blown ornaments and other hanging objects, playing with different bubble types and decorations, as well as learning how to create good sturdy loops for hanging. Chad will continue by demonstrating hot sculpting of solid flowers and birds, giving the students a chance to manipulate the solid glass with tweezers and crimps to get a desired texture. Finally, students will make some solid and blown pumpkins, building on techniques from earlier in the week to combine glass blowing with hot sculpting.
Most of the made objects are quick and designed as production items which are common throughout the hot glass world. Participants will have a good amount of time to develop skills with practice and repetition, as well as learning to work on a glass blowing team. Expect to go home with a variety of decorative objects, but also skills that are essential to good glass blowing.