View Full Version : Could I get a sculptors opinion please, look at these pix.

Fire Psycho
10-02-2004, 10:09 PM
Here are 2 images of sculptures I've done of Frankenstein

The left side is a version in Sulpey and Fimo
The right side is moretti torching.

How can I find out what the trick is to make glass react like sculpting in clay?
Is there a method??? Or is it experience???

I'm sorta exasperated. Any advice is very welcome..I want to make this glass translate my brain.

10-02-2004, 10:39 PM
Hi! :wave:

My father was a sculptor, and I take after him, so I guess that qualifies me to answer your questions, lol! ;) :D

The clay sculpture is excellent! Wow! When you have mastered the glass medium, I would love to see what you do with it! Hey, I see you're from FL, whereabouts, may I ask?? :)

I too wonder about sculpting with glass, sheesh, it's a totally different thing when it comes to controlling it! But be assured, it can be done. It's just going to take some practice. ;)

10-02-2004, 11:03 PM
How about trying Bullseye glass, it's a bit stiffer so it won't go smooshy as easily as the Effetre does. It'll be easier to sculpt with, I think.

10-02-2004, 11:07 PM
Sharon Peter's had a demo at the Gathering this year where she made one of her faces...and she explained as she went how important it is to do certain parts before others...or the others will melt away and you will loose what you have done. So its not the glass...you can sculpt any glass....its learning your flame and heat and how to keep your work hot but not to hot...so you wont loose some of it...and then the biggest part of a sculpture like this is doing certain parts first and working from there...if your really intrested in going this route/sculpture...I would say taking a class you would learn so very much...just watching the demo I learned a lot...but not enough to sit here and write it out for you...sorry about that. It was amazing to watch Sharon work, and Kathy Johnson also, making her horses....Sharon did do eyes,nose and lips, chin and the works on her gargoyle type guy

10-03-2004, 12:12 AM
I had a background in clay before discovering glass. I know exactly how you feel. I remember wanting to do all the same things with glass that I did with clay. The first thing I had to learn to do was to think of my tools as an extension of my fingers.(I wanted to touch the glass so bad at first!) The next step is to make sure you have a good assortment of tools you are comfortable with. My favorites are my little razor on the stick and my pick. I keep dipping my tools in cold water over and over and I work on a low flame for the tedious work. Oh yea, and about a million hours of practice! I hope this helps some.


10-03-2004, 12:13 AM
I bet there are a few videos or cd's that would do a great job of showing you. I think you did pretty well!

10-03-2004, 12:53 AM
Hi Fire Psycho -- It's really difficult to learn to work with hot glass even if you are an experienced sculptor. It moves differently than other media.

I'm a commercial sculptor (and painter) for a living. Give me clay or wax, and I can give you an exact, scaled three-dimensional replica of anything from liscensed characters to the human form -- but give me a torch and some glass and it's like I'm sculpting whipped cream with my feet (okay :D , maybe not that bad, but you get the idea).

I have been working with hot glass on and off (around "real" work :rolleyes: ) for about four months. I'm still learning all of the variables of heat flame and distance, and the fact that even within a glass brand, the chemical colorants present in each color effect it's fluidity and workability. I'm still searching for favorite hot glass sculpting tools -- I keep making and trying out new ones.

What Kaye said -- about working areas of largest mass first, then working smaller mass areas, then finish with the details -- is really the most logical approach. (It kind of looks like that's how you approached Frankenstein.)

Just keep at it. (It's not like sculpting in clay -- heh heh heh -- it's more like sculpting in slip on a rotisserie.) Practice at the torch will definitely make your skill level in hot glass move up towards your skill level in polymer clay.

Give it a little time and a little practice -- I'd be thoroughly frustrated if I didn't come into this knowing that hot glass moves like honey, and not to expect too much from myself too soon.

By the way, you're doing great! (Cut yourself some slack, and keep practicing. :) )

Feel free to PM me if you want to talk sculpting.


10-03-2004, 09:52 AM
I'm still looking for a doctor that can give me tungsten hamds with a different tool on the 6 useless finger tip... That would make it a lot easier to do the millis I want in glass. I did polymer clay for about ten years way back when. I guess there are a lot of us that migrated to glass. What were we thinking???

Keep up the good work and keep us posted on your progress. I've been at this glass thing for several years now and still don't get most of it... it's just not the same as clay... but in a lot of ways, it's better and "some" of the techniques do apply. Practice... practive... practice is the only solution to your dillema.


Helen Simon
10-03-2004, 10:30 AM
I (not so) patiently worked in polyclay for a year or 2, waiting to afford to work in glass. It did help to learn the physics of how beads hang. I've found that every batch of every color is slightly different in how it behaves. I blow rather than dip hot tools in hopes of avoiding bubbles, and stick my exacto knife in a beeswax ornament :) ...I use a lot of trans colors over opaques, since they are usually harder, making a nice shell. And I've found that using tools in layers and steps, fine tuning as you go, really helps. Also, making the same type bead several times, of course, makes the outcome better. Practise makes perfect, or rather, better. hth, Love, Helen

10-03-2004, 10:38 AM
Dear Fire Psycho,
Not sure what advice or help I can offer, but will give it a try. I think the clay is an amazing tool to use to get the proportions down and do use it to study for glass - BUT it only has worked for me if I keep it simple. Unless you have the time to re-work the glass for days and some interesting medical equipment, I think it might help to keep this in mind?

1. You can re-work and and re-work hot glass, too. You can add and pull it away.
2. I like my wax sculpting tools tons and use each one for different effects.
3. Don't like the bead you made? Warm it back up in the kiln and do it again.
4. Lately, I have been making sectional parts and putting them together. (eyes mostly) I am wonder if you were to make the parts and pieces separate and THEN assemble? Would we both see more realism? The Mr. Potato Head School of Glass might be something worth looking into.....
5. How about a mixed media piece?

Okay, I doubt if that was any help at all and for what it's worth? I think both pieces are absolutely wonderful.

WOOMan of Little Heads,
Sheryll aka Ms. Booger

10-03-2004, 11:17 AM
Ok I'll jump in here as well. The most important thing to remember when working in glass is controlling and knowing the heat base of the glass. That is the most dificult thing to master (I sure haven't yet). When sculpting with glass you want to work cooler i.e. you don't want the heat sunk into the base of the bead. You will be very surpised how much the glass will still move when not molten. Try sculpting with ivory. A class with Loren Stump but make sure the class that you get has that in it cause he teaches alot of dif stuff. If you are in fl you might want to see about some lessons from Ray Olson he is extremely talented and will teach you what you want. If you want info on contacting him let me know.

10-03-2004, 01:08 PM
Does anyone have any recommendations for videos that address this topic?


10-03-2004, 04:01 PM
Not only can trying to do clay type sculpture in glass frustrate you, do 33 years as a cake decorator and then try to get glass to sculpture like icing does. A lot harder. Peg M

Beth Myers
10-03-2004, 04:35 PM
I'm so impressed. Great advice you guys!! :clap:

Jennifer Geldard
10-03-2004, 06:28 PM
The most important thing to remember for me I think, is that application of heat removes detail ... so if you adopt a method of building up your work as opposed to carving into it, you'll have more luck. I tend to do a kind of add and smooth...add and smooth , pattern of sculpting.

Fire Psycho
10-03-2004, 08:44 PM
You guys are terrific.

LISA – I’m in Jacksonville
ELLEN – Ya know, I got some of that bullseye but the boss ( aka. The hot chick I live with that feeds me..lol) condemned from using it until I get better at ruining moretti..lol..I know what you are thinking, but forget it..she’s a Leo…lol.
KAYE – I really appreciate that information on the process of sculpting in glass. That information is indispensable because if I can finally get myself to sit through a class I will know what to look for.
KELLY – Thank you very much for the ‘low flame advice”, I really hadn’t thought of that. It might work on this hot head torch. I am going to give that a try tonight.
AMORET – If you happen to come across any, please let me know. Awesome name by the way :) .
TERRI – I would definitely like to talk to you sometime, and see some of your work. I never have met an honest to goodness professional sculptor before.
MR. SMILEY – Thank you for the advice, and yes I will keep practicing. You do some very nice work also and must have a large female following. Maybe ill try the same thing in FIMO..lol
HELEN – Thank you very much for giving me some insight on how you do things.
MS. BOOGER – I really appreciate that advice. I never thought about letting it harden, heating it up again in the kiln, reworking, doing parts. You are an absolute GENIUS,
I think that is an awesome step for me to approach with this hot head torch.
CHRISANN – Yes, please let me know how to contact that guy.
PEG – I couldn’t imagine decorating a cake for 33 years, must be a HUGE one.

I really appreciate everybody’s help MILLE GRAZIE!!!!!!!!