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Let the Fire Gods Guide You. Finding your inner whimsy.

Learning to work with glass is truly a magical experience. Without any skill, you can learn to manipulate glass at its most fundamental level. One of the things that I always like to have students do first is just sit with a molten blob of glass at the bench ( let's call him Blob ) and pick up a pair of tweezers or shears and just start poking, cutting, and twisting this crazy super-cooled liquid. While sitting there with Blob, the student will experience how long it takes for Blob to go from the hot depths of the furnace to cooling down at the bench while you are wrenching, twisting and pulling all of Blobs parts in different directions. When Blob gets too cold to wrangle

( but not cold enough to crack) the student needs to get Blob into the Gloryhole to reheat. Once hot enough, Blob is ready for Round 2 of manipulation. Now if you happen to be a Venetian Glassblowing Maestro ( or something close...) you can turn Blob into a beautiful and graceful pulled pony. The beauty of the pulled pony is that it is created without reheating the glass at all. It is quite a wonder to see Blob transform into a beautiful object while the cooling is happening and the clock is ticking. This is a wonderful practice in learning how to hone your skills by using just a tool or two.

Very often, if you walk into a glass studio, you will see lots of pulled ponies sitting atop of the furnace. I like to think of them as Guardian Angels are little Glass Gods.

I named my pony Secretariat as that is my favorite clippity-clop movie. What will you name yours? This is a great exercise but do not get discouraged if you end up with a two legged pony or one with a missing tail. It takes patience and practice!

Learn how to turn Blob into a beautiful ornament for your Garden! This two hour class will allow each student to experience working with a Blob and then learning how to inflate a Blob by controlling it's shape and blowing air through a 5 foot blowpipe. The possibilities are endless. Let the creative juices flow and learn to Blow!

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