Finding feathers on walks is like receiving a gift from the sky. Attempting to create them has been an equally rewarding experience. The design and basic beauty are undeniable. "Where has this feather been? How is it so perfect? What can be made using feathers?" They hold a past and stimulate imagination, a suitable object to be made using glass.
Multiple sketches, watercolors and actual feathers are helpful in developing the shape, color and size into a workable design.
A layer of clear glass is used to form a base onto which color glass powder is sifted. Attention to color separation and even application is important. These are ready for firing to 1465 degrees Fahrenheit.
The quil of the feather is laid up and fused. It is made from strips of sheet glass that have been cut and pulled in a torch to achieve the subtle taper.
The shape of the feather is sculpted using various water fed diamond tools. The glass is cut and polished in much the same way stone is in lapidary techniques. Here is a close up of a wet router.
These pieces are now taking shape. Further fine tuning is need to prepare them for the final firing where heating the glass will fire polish the edges to a glossy smooth surface.
Here, a wet band saw is used to further define the edges.
A vertical wet belt sander is used to touch up the edge as to give it the smoothest edge for firing.
After extensive cutting and polishing here are the pieces ready for firing. They will be brought to 1385 degrees very briefly as to let the edges get a final shine without loosing the details of the shape.
These pieces are ready for signing, stringing and boxing. Thank you for the interest in the process. You can find these feathers in the shop set-up for shipping. Thank you for the interest in the process.