Tuesday, 31 March 2009

First completed piece

Well here it is, the first completed piece of my residency at Whitby Museum. I have designed this inspired by the artefacts in the Scoresby part of the collection (see previous entry).

Sunday, 29 March 2009

First 'Inspired by Heritage' set

Well here it is, not quite finished but at least I feel as though I am now making some progress with my residency at Whitby Museum. My project is to research through all aspects of the museum and produce a new collection of jewellery inspired by and reflecting the diversity.   I have spent some time looking at the information about the Captains Scoresby.They were father and son and each captained whaling ships. The younger William Scoresby was particularly remarkable for his scientific studies of arctic flora and fauna and of magnetism.  He surveyed and mapped the East Coast of Greenland and Jan Meyene Island north of Greenland and also studied the detailed forms of snowflakes, producing a remarkable series of drawings of them. More information can be found at http://www.whitbymuseum.org.uk/d12/scor/index.htm
Anyway, this is the beginning of my first real piece inspired by the museum collection.  I hope when it is finished it will reflect both the drama portrayed in prints of ships amongst the icebergs and the delicacy of Soresby's drawings of snowflakes.

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Copper clay and enamel

These are my first experiments with the copper clay produced by Hadar Jacobson.  The two left hand pieces and the small samples all have textured patterns using my paper textures butfor the central piece I used a commercial texture plate (not something I do very often).  I haven't had much time to spare to explore this medium but really wanted to know how it would enamel.  On the right hand side the samples are showing (clockwise) a piece fresh from the kiln with part of the oxidised surface cleaned with a wire brush.  The top right-hand enamelled sample had no flux layer whereas the one below it had a layer of enamel flux fired on first followed by the layer of three colours.  The central piece had a layer of flux inside fired, was pickled and scrubbed and then had the reds inside and small amount of flux over traces of the fire scale in the leaf pattern.  It oxidises very heavily when being enamelled so then had to be pickled in a salt and vinegar solution and the reds I used were not particularly 'pickle safe'.  Although in these pieces my standard of workmanship leaves a lot to be desired I knew that I didn't have much free time to do them in and really wanted to know what it would be like and I think it might be of interest to other enamellers out there?

Monday, 23 March 2009

More blues

I have done a few more experiments with different blues and now have this lovely selection of blue beads finished.   These are to go with the enamelled beads I began last week and now I just need to work out how to create a necklace from all of this.

Sunday, 22 March 2009

Anglo-Saxons on the North East Coast

I have spent a very interesting couple of days listening to a variety of talks about the Anglo-Saxons on the North East Coast.  Saturday was spent at the Museum listening to presentations on Monasteries, cemeteries, manuscripts and parishes.  The archaeologist Steve Sherlock showed some images of very beautiful glass beads among the many interesting finds in excavations in the Loftus area.  I am always fascinated to see ancient glass beads in museums so seeing them documented as part of the finds of an archaeological dig was really interesting too. They looked just like contemporary beads - there was even an example of millefiore among the images he showed.  Today was a visit first to St Oswald's Church at Lythe.  Amongst the fabulous Anglo-Saxon carvings in the Church at Lythe is this lovely bird.  The group then went on to the visit the area around the headland where Whitby Abbey stands.  Sarah Jennings and Tony Wilmott of English Heritage talked about the excavations that have taken place over the last few years and about the finding and the impact this has had on the understanding of the Abbey and settlement around it.  

Friday, 20 March 2009

Enamelling on art clay silver

I have been working on my enamelled beads again today and here are the results.  In the front is a small test sample together with a small silver bead.  The larger beads are enamelled to match up and tone with some glass beads I am also working on.  They are not perfect but I am quite pleased.

Thursday, 19 March 2009

Work in progress

I had another lovely day in Whitby Museum.  I have done a few more sketches, taken more photographs and am beginning to sort out some of my ideas.  When I arrived home I was straight into the studio to do a few tests in enamel trying to match enamel to some glass beads I am working on.  Here is one of my test samples together with the first of my enamelled beads made in art clay silver.  It is not finished yet as it still needs stoning back, polishing and re-firing.

Inspired by heritage

I have been reflecting on the progress of my residency at Whitby Museum and in particular the making of badges with visitors.  I have really enjoyed this but was not sure how it fitted in with my own work or with my plan for the residency.  I have spent quite a few days sketching in different areas of the museum but was still feeling quite confused by the variety and quantity of inspiring artefacts, but enjoying all the shapes and patterns.  At the same time I have had other work to focus on.  In April it will be the 30th annual conference of the Guild of Enamellers and the theme for the members exhibition this year is texture.  In May I am going up to Edinburgh one weekend to help Dorothy Cockrell run an enamelling workshop.  This is being organised for the Art Clay World UK Guild by Emma Baird (of The Little Beadshop - see link) and she needs a photograph for her publicity.  Then in October I will be a tutor at the Art Clay World UK Guild Conference in Jersey and, in my usual way, am already preparing examples for that.  Yesterday I spent the day working on some beads constructed in art clay silver with the aim of using them for all three events.  This morning I realised that, with all the badge making at the museum I am now happily designing within circles without even thinking about the constraints.  Now I need to dash back to the museum and sketch some more and will be on my way as soon as I have printed out a few more circles - definately Inspired by Heritage

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Rings and things

I had a lovely day out yesterday with my friend Margaret.  We went down to Scunthorpe to see the exhbition 'Playing with Fire' at 20-21 Visual Arts.  I can highly recommend it and we both came home really excited and inspired.  I wanted to start experimenting straight away but have had to get on and get some work done!  I have finished off these six silver rings, one of which is a commission so had to be finished.   I then started some beads in art clay silver with the intention of enamelling them.  I was hoping to get the first one enamelled today but was being totally unrealistic.  I might have got it done if I had only made one bead but once I had started I just had to make a set........ they are still in the kiln firing as I post this.

Sunday, 15 March 2009

More badges and colourful fun

I was in Whitby Museum again today and had a few more young volunteers looking at their favourite things in the collection and making their own souvenir badge.  The sweet pink drawing is a teddy bear in the toy collection and the fantastic multi coloured drawing is one of the brightly painted carved pieces in the Scoresby Room - I must check this out but think it is probably from one of the islands in the Pacific.

I also had a bit of time to continue my doodles and did a few of my own - one of which I swapped for the beautiful smiling sunstar (in the centre).  The plain line drawing in the background is me trying to copy some of Scoresby's original snowflake drawings.  They are tiny and very precise and beautiful, unlike my very imprecise versions sketched while standing up and balancing my notebook...... inspirational things though.  I hope this gives some indication of the wide variety of material in the museum collection.  It includes material from all over the world and really does reflect Whitby's maritime heritage and the wide geographical links it has always had.   Somehow some of this inspiring stuff has to percolate through into my work........ watch this space.

Saturday, 14 March 2009

More badge making fun

I have spent today at Whitby Museum and although it began fairly quietly it ended with a flurry of badge making.  Here is one of the badges made by a young visitor this morning, a beautiful little drawing of a goldcrest.  This is exactly why I am enjoying my residency so much!  When the museum is quiet I am focussed on looking carefully at some object or set of objects.  When there are visitors in I can sometimes encourage them to look closely too.

Friday, 13 March 2009


I have spent a really enjoyable day at Whitby Community College working with a group of students who had prepared their designs for 'dog' brooches.  We have been sawing, drilling, cleaning and soldering copper all day and I hope they are pleased with their achievements.  They all still have some work to do to finish their pieces but I was really impressed and am looking forward to seeing them at their end of year show.

Now I just need to sort myself out ready for a weekend of trying to persuade visitors to Whitby Museum to take a bit longer looking at some of the objects and sketch a bit of pattern that I can then make into their own unique souvenir badge.   

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Day off....... really

Today I am having a day off!  One of the things about being self employed and running courses is that I often (make that usually) work through the weekends as, logically most people want to take a course during their weekend leisure time.  I enjoy doing things this way around as it means I can take time off during the week and go places when generally they are a bit quieter.  The other thing about working so close to home (my studio is attached to the house) is that it is very difficult not to 'just pop into the studio' and find I have spent the whole day there without intending to.  Today, for my day off, I am going over to Middlesbrough to MIMA (Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art) to the exhibition Raising the Bar - Influential Voices in Metal http://www.visitmima.com

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

What a treat.....

One of the benefits of being a maker is that occassionally you get to treat yourself to something.  Today I have worked hard to finish off a couple of consignments of work and posted them out to galleries.  I went out to the post office in the village and it is a lovely sunny day out there, the landscape looks beautiful in the sunshire and it was guaranteed to lift my mood.  I got back to the studio and decided to use a couple of little beads I made a few weeks ago to make myself a bright pair of earrings and here they are.  The dangle bit on the bottom is made in art clay silver Let me know what you think?

At the weekend

Last weekend I had a student, Christine Dandy, here in my studio for two days of art clay silver workshops.  On Saturday she made herself a pretty pair of earrings followed by these four lovely charms.  On the Sunday she went on to make a variety of beads.   We threaded them onto one of my chain bracelets together with a couple of my lampworked glass beads, a polished carnelian and a little faceted citrine and she went away with this lovely bracelet.  If you would like to make your own then have a look at my website for details of courses or email me and let me know what you would like to do www.lynne-glazzard.co.uk

Friday, 6 March 2009

New earrings

I have just finished off some new earrings using some of my lampwork beads and pieces I made a couple of weeks ago - before my trip.

The lilac ones are combined with dangles made in art clay silver.  The others are all made using bronze clay dangles.  They are all on sterling silver wires.

Day trip

Last Friday I went to the British Museum for a day out.  I had pre-booked tickets to the two big exhibitions Babylon and Shah 'Abbas The Remaking of Iran.  I have wanted to see the glazed brick lions from the Ishtar Gate for years and was really disappointed to find them facing in the wrong direction.  There was an architectural model which clearly showed them in position facing outwards from down the processional way so why were they facing away from the visitor in the exhibition?  It was also extremely crowded and almost claustrophobic which was a bit disappointing too, as visitors were only admitted on timed tickets.  The Shah 'Abbas exhibition was much better, more space to actually look at the exhibits and room to be able to stand and read the information panels.  Many of the exhibits were text and in particular excerpts from the Qu'ran and although I was unable to read these this did not detract from the beautiful details.  

I think I enjoyed the main bits of the museum more than the special exhbitions though and love this detail from a stone with it's little carved turtle.  My favourite thing of the day though was this circle of tiny carved Inuit birds.  Although it was set out in a circle which, to the casual observer suggests a string of beads, they were described as gaming pieces and it said it was a game where the pieces were tossed into the air and caught - like the game of Jacks.