28
Jan

Art Glass Paperweights of the Alien Kind

   Posted by: BJ Johnson in sculpture

While the cold-working is progressing on the new wine stoppers and small paperweights, I thought I'd share a bit about the Great Paperweight Project. A friend of ours, Jon Ramer, has been encouraging us to get into the Art Glass Marble market for some time. A few months ago, he invested in our effort, funding the first 40 or so marbles to get things going. He has pick of ten of his choosing, but has yet to tag any.

As you may have learned by this time, I do things big. Wasn't intentional this time, as we were

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26
Jan

Rounding Out the Wine Stopper 1st Dozen

   Posted by: BJ Johnson in photography

Wrapping up the first Art Glass Wine Stopper set, are two geometrics and four spheres. The lower three are a series; all made from the same initial structure. There is a fourth in that series that is 50% larger. He hasn't been cold-worked yet but he's stunning!

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25
Jan

Wine Stopper Photography! At Last!!

   Posted by: BJ Johnson in photography

Exacting and tedious to set up to get good quality studio shots of art glass but well worth the effort when you finally get it all right. Up to that point, it's darn frustrating and seems to take forever. Gobos and reflector cards all over the place to direct light into the glass; all threatening to fall over at any given moment. Light glow appears on the seamless background—no idea where it came from and no amount of moving stuff around makes any difference. Turns out I had moved one of the Speedotron strobes closer to the set and

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25
Jan

The California Wildfire That Burned Big Sur – Part 13

   Posted by: BJ Johnson in studio

Spherical Magic & The Basin Complex Wildfire – Days 76+

1/25/2009 2:35 AM

After preparing to save the studio from destruction, it appears now that we only saved it for the banks. Shortly following the above journal, that you may want to read first, it became widely known that the economy was tanking. We're in the midst of a cascade failure that, unless something positive happens really soon, will cost us our studio and the two large sculpture commissions still in process because we won't have anywhere to work; let alone the funds to complete them.

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24
Jan

Head In The Sand

   Posted by: BJ Johnson in sculpture

One day you're up; next day you're down. When things get rough, sticking one's head "in the sand" by paying attention to one's work can help keep you from freezing to the proverbial flagpole.

Worked on the chandelier design after doing studio photography of a Lifetime Achievement Award sculpture to be sent off to its new home today. Always a bittersweet moment when one of our children leave for the outside world. Just like offspring of the human variety, sometimes we get to see them again but not often enough. We created them, poured ourselves into their

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22
Jan

Status » Head In The Clouds

   Posted by: BJ Johnson

Rain on the roof, fog on the mountain all around us. Condensed upon us last night and persisted all day. Visibility is 60 feet or less. Rains hard at times, mist and drizzle between. Cats come in soaked. Good thing I buttoned up the hot shop before hitting the sack. Fun, and usually gives a cozy feeling but in these times, it tends to feel more like being further cut off. Odd how it can change.

Back when the Big Sur Fire was raging and threatening to burn our studio to the ground, it felt really good the first time that it settled upon us. Kept the fire from advancing so quickly, due to the moisture content of the atmosphere. That fire burned for more than two months. When the clouds came, it wasn't over, by any means, but it sure was welcome and helped us to relax just a tiny bit.

Weather held for longer than expected, so made the most of it. 4-6 hours each day hauling around 2,200° balls of molten glass, 5-8 pounds flopping around on the end of a 5 foot long, 1/2 inch diameter molybdenum and stainless steel rod takes a lot out of you. By the time I was done... I was done. Not much energy left to sit down and post an entry.

Usually, Joy and I alternate the Gaffer and Assistant positions and that gives one time to rest, drink to maintain fluids and grab a snack between operations that

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