Techniques

1. Fused Glass Powder Prints – After taking an introduction and then 2 week class with Stacy Smith (first at Bullseye Glass in Portland, OR and then at Penland School of Craft in the NC mountains), I knew I wanted to pursue this technique. It relies heavily on Photoshop, and I learned a lot about “Layers” taking the class. Here are the basics: First, I manipulate photos (or other art pictures) in Photoshop and print the size transparencies (black on clear – laser printer gives darkest images) of the different layers (colors/images) I want in my artworks. Then I make a silk screen – I use a 110-137 mesh silk screen (from Victory Factory) and coat it with emulsion in a darkened room. After it is dry, I arrange the transparencies on a clean clear glass plate (1/4 inch thick or less so that UV light can pass through) on a light box containing UV fluorescent lights). On top of the transparencies I place the silk screen and then some opaque cardboard and books. The emulsion film gets exposed to the UV lights for about 2 minutes (varies with each person’s set up). Then, I wash off the silk screen with a strong water spray (hose outside is good) and dry it again. The areas with the black on the transparency should wash out as the UV light did not cross link that area.
The next step is to print by pushing glass powder through the silk screen (white areas) onto a piece of glass to fuse. Suspend the silk screen above the glass so that it doesn’t smear when making the print. To print, push glass powder through the screen onto a clean sheet of glass. After printing, fuse the glass – high temperature (for me 1450 degrees or higher) will give a smooth glossy appearance. Later, after the first fuse, you can print another image and fuse at a lower temperature (about 1275-1350) depending on color used and textural effect desired. There are so many variations to try that each artwork becomes a monoprint. Note how the WWII War’s Over prints, which use the same images, differ with different emphasis and color.