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Life is like a bowl of cherries! Especially when enamelling!

Being a generally "glass half-full" person, I am drawn to positive quotes and colourful objects in nature, and the latter certainly inspire me when working with enamel. I absolutely love the rich opaque tones of my ever expanding vitreous enamel powder collection. Note to self (if hopelessly self-defeating!) my New Year's resolution is "I must use the enamels I already have", but I can seldom resist buying more; I am an incurable colour magpie!

For those of you who have never done it before, enamelling is a careful and meditative process, sifting or painting thin layers of coloured glass powders onto the surface of copper blanks, and swiftly firing them in a kiln for minute or two at temperatures over 800 degrees celcius. Then letting them cool down (the colours will change when cooled from hot to cold) and choosing the next layer to add. Will it obscure or reveal the metal or another colour beneath? Using opaque or transparent enamels, either is possible! The scope is immense, and the results can be predictable or completely take you by surprise!

Enamelling on bowls is my latest venture, and I am offering intermediate day courses to students with some previous experience of enamelling in these techniques at Rainbow Glass Studios where I teach fused glass and enamelling on the weekend courses. If you'd like to try enamelling I would recommend you come first to my beginners day course (next date: Sat 28th Jan 2023) to give you a good grounding in the basic skills. Then attend the enamelling bowls course (next date: Sat 11th March 2023) which opens up a larger "canvas" on which to explore more decorative techniques.

Here are a few examples of bowls enamelled during the Enamelling on Bowls day course. My students are taught to achieve a good surface on which to decorate (although this isn't the only way to work with enamels) and then to be creative with stencils, stamps, S'Grafitto, sifting, painting, and using glass, foil and other enamelling media to make unique bowls to their own designs. I think you'll agree they are simply gorgeous! Well done folks!


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