June was "Strawberry" month for the Fruit of the Month workshop. This is a group photo of all the dishes - except for Patty's. Patty left town for a few weeks before I got a photo of her dish, so we'll have to catch up with her when she gets back!
Top Row (left to right): Sara, Dorothy, Cat
Bottom Row (all Cat's - including the tomato and banana).
Designing strawberries in glass turned out to be a little more challenging than we expected, but it was fun and delicious making the attempt! And what lucious research specimens we had to imitate! This is a close-up of some strawberries to illustrate the pattern created by the seeds in the flesh of the fruit. Designing strawberries in glass turned out to be a little more challenging than we expected, but it was fun - and delicious - making the attempt!
We discovered that strawberries don't seem to have a uniform number of leaves from berry to berry. In my original sample - made sometime before the workshop, there were 10 leaves. The berries we worked with at the workshop seemed to have 11 leaves. Since then, I've cleaned more berries and some had even more than 11 leaves! Next time you're cleaning berries - count the leaves! See how many they have.
Dorothy chose to create her strawberry with the inside showing. The photo on the left is her piece before it was fired. It was constructed with red glass over ivory. The details inside were created from stringers (almond color) and coarse frit (ivory and pink champagne). The tips of the leaves are just barely visible from under the berry, with a few of the seeds shown in yellow, which were made with coarse frit chips.
Sara chose a fairly challenging design. She wanted to create a piece that showed both the inside and the outside of the strawberry. The photo on the left is one layer - it is clear glass with stringers and frit arranged that, when this layer was placed against a red layer, it would look like the inside of the strawberry. This side would become the inside of her dish.
The outside of the strawberry was an opaque red layer with leaves and seeds, placed on top of the bottom clear layer. Sara arranged several bits of coarse frit in yellow and clear around the edge of the clear side of the piece. This created a little bit of space around the edge so that, when fired, air would escape between the layers as the top layer slumped onto the bottom layer - so there wouldn't be any bubbles trapped between the two pieces because of the frit and stringers inside.
Then both layers were carefully placed in the kiln to be fired with a contour fuse. After the first firing, the piece was slumped into what we call the "wide bottom fluted" mold so that the leaves became the bottom of the dish, the inside of the berry was the inside of the dish.
This is the bottom side of Sara's dish.
This is the inside of Sara's dish.