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Topic: Making Mosaic Bits and Pieces  (Read 5287 times)
Tags for this thread: mosaic , glass , grout  Add new tag
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Mike Jordan
« on: February 13, 2011 08:57:37 PM »

Although this may look like a mosaic table top before the grout is put on, it really isn't. Cheesy  What it is is a kiln shelf full of un-fired bits and pieces from my large supply of scrap glass that I've been wondering what to do with.  I've been wanting to do a mosaic for some time, I just can't figure out what pattern I want to attempt doing. I'd been playing with some snipped pieces left over from one of my other projects, pushing them around into different shapes and patterns, but nothing was jumping out at me. So I decided to fire them to polish and round off the edges.  I did a few, then a few more and then a couple of shelf fulls and now I've got several pounds of fired pieces of different colors that I haven't figured what to do with... but they look neat on my desk top. Cheesy

This self I put in tonight, here is a bunch that I've already done and what they look like (ignore the Gecko in the middle, he was sunning himself and wouldn't move for the picture)... This is only a small part of what I've done so far.

I'm not very creative when it comes with coming up with patterns or something else that these could be used for, so I don't know if I'll ever actually use them, but it's better than turning the scrap into a pot melt or something.


« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2011 09:53:38 PM »

Are you kidding me?  Those are FANTASTIC!  Just think of the wild mosaic you could make with those.  I am groovin' on 'em big time!  You must, must must make a mosaic!  Do it today! - You will be the envy of this board with your one of a kind, hand made glass tiles!

...So...This is what insanity must be like, I thought.....and I could kind of see the appeal.
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« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2011 04:02:38 AM »

I'm with joby560 on this! I live for the mosaic look! I can see these fused together in a plate with frit in between and the lizard god in the middle! Go crazy with it!

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« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2011 04:59:17 AM »

At first glance I thought the lizard's legs were tree branches.  I guess my subconscious thinks you should do a tree mosaic.   Smiley

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« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2011 11:40:49 AM »

Yes, I see a tree of life type of thing.

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Mike Jordan
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2011 04:13:41 PM »

LOL, Joby, After I got done, I doubt I'd be the envy, although it sure would be one of a kind. Cheesy

I've had others mention the tree as well. I did more brown in my last batch with that in mind. What I see is a path of some kind, maybe like stepping stones going off across the glass with pink flowers on the side, the dark blue for water and green for grash, yellow for the sun and the black for ants. Cheesy  Actually, ants is what got me creating the black round pieces.  I needed some thin black stringer for the legs, which is why I hadn't done them yet, but I got that last week.  What I would like to do is a ant hill with ants crawling up it and maybe one going in and one coming out of a hole at the top.  I can visualize it in my head, but they rarely come out the way I visualize them.  Now someone with talent could also create small food items that they would be carrying up the mound to the top to take in. I saw the perfect bowl shape at Bullseye on Friday for an ant hill but I didn't get it and am going to see if I can find it cheaper or something that will work as good in stainless steel.  I could use some of the bits and pieces around the hill to liven it up. Cheesy  I've also thought about doing a ant farm by creating a Hydroperm or R&R910 mold of the farm and then make ants to put in it.  I've not seen a glass ant farm but I'm sure someone has done one.  If my test ants turn out ok, maybe I'll do the ant farm first since I can cast that out of all of the broken tempered glass I have. It won't matter that the ants are done in Bullseye glass since they will only be sitting in the tunnels and not fused in them.  <sigh> At least I have talent with a vivid imagination. Cheesy

« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2011 04:37:00 PM »

Calm down, Mike... Calm down... I have the perfect solution!
Just box those bad boys up and send them to me and I will whip them into a mosaic lickety split!  Problem solved.

per usual, I am amazing!

...So...This is what insanity must be like, I thought.....and I could kind of see the appeal.
Mike Jordan
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2011 10:39:49 PM »

LOL!  Yea, that would solve my problem alright, except you would have to stand in line with a few others that are just begging to help me with my problem. Cheesy

I did think about putting them all in a 5 pound Bullseye jar and do a jelly bean count contest.  Of course if they were really jelly beans, it would mostly be the black ones and pop corn ones that would go in there. The lemons, cherries, oranges and other assorted fruit flavors would stay with me. Wink

I got another couple of pounds of chips out of the kiln this evening and I have about another pound or so chipped up but I need to scrap and re-coat my 21" shelf as I'm starting to get a little bit of kiln washing sticking on a few of them. I've done about 5 firings between 1425 and 1450 (most of them at the 1450 side) and I'm getting a few spots that are flaking.  So it's either use my smaller shelf that was freshly coated a couple of weeks ago but I haven't used yet or re-coat the big one. I'd rather use the big one since I can do a lot of chips at one time. I need to get out my big table top so I can spread them out and separate the colors out and start seeing if I can piece anything together.  I still have lots of scrap though and I'm not tired of making them yet, so I'll keep making them.  I'm starting to try and get more defined shapes though rather than just random snipping. Triangles seem to be used a lot and I don't have a lot of triangles.  I also want to get long thin pieces in case I want something for ribs or tree limbs or fence rails or something. Cheesy

Thanks for the offer.  Cheesy

« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2011 07:50:08 PM »

Mike, I am here to serve.  I will take them off your hands any time.  Just ask.

And as far as the shelf and flaking, etc... It is a HUGE pain.  I have ruined so many projects becuase I tried to eek an extra firing out of the shelf wash on it.  It was this summer that I finally committed to scraping the old wash off EVERY time I fire and put 5 layers of new wash on each time I fire.  It gives clean results and I am not having as many problems with air bubb;es that tend to be created because of the chipping, etc.  Not very Green, I know.. But What can you do?

...So...This is what insanity must be like, I thought.....and I could kind of see the appeal.
Mike Jordan
« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2011 08:05:36 PM »

I usually switch to Bullseye Thinfire after I've worn out my kiln wash and I don't feel like re-doing it. But the Thinfire gets expensive with as much as I was using, even if I buy it during one of Bullseye twice annual sales.  So I'm trying to use kiln wash more as well, but it's still a pain to scrap off and re-wash.  I find that I can get a half dozen or more firings if I'm only going no higher than 1425 and even more if I stay under 1400.  I've been doing the bits at 1450 and I've seen that on the 4th firing, I'm getting a little sticking and even more on the 5th and some spikes on the bottoms and not the usual smooth feel.  Although I probably could get a 6th firing, I'm not going to and will re-wash the shelf.  I put on 5 or 6 coats as well.  I also use a wide piece of 4mm glass to scrape if off. It's sized to give me a good grip on it as I scrape.

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