I probably get into this frame of mind every year but it's more noticeable to me as I look at a couple new sets of trays right out of the kiln. I often like to cut-once-and-make-two when I work, to maximize my glass usage as well as create pieces that complement each other. I had some patterned glass in my scrap pile and let them dictate these new designs.
It was only after firing the first two that I noticed I hadn't used any dichroic bits or frit or stringer. Strange for me, since I always tend to accessorize a piece just a little before closing the kiln. In fact, I often have to remove a few bits before firing, since I love adding details.
These pieces seem simpler, cleaner, dare I say, decluttered? Obviously the patterned glass adds detail, as well as the carving but they are much more restrained than what I usually make. Maybe my vacation from the studio uncluttered my mind a little, too!
Another interesting thing about these pieces (they measure 11" square and 12" round, by the way. I seldom photograph pieces before slumping but wanted to show how similar they are while flat.) is the amount of tiny bubbles.
For the green square and coral round, I used my standard fusing schedule. These pieces were both arranged on the kiln shelf and then capped with clear. Notice how many bubbles they have, which isn't always a bad thing, especially the way they've formed around the carving:
So, better with lots of tiny bubbles or not? I'm still deciding but I'm finally convinced at what a difference moving slowly through that temperature range makes. I'll definitely move this schedule to the front of my kiln notes book.
Speaking of notes; I spent some time over the holidays with my glass sketches, notes and clippings. I have several Moleskin books full of ideas, as well as notepads, folders and tear-outs from magazines, catalogs, etc. As I was flipping through everything trying to decide which ideas deserved testing, it occurred to me that a better filing system would make my life a lot easier as well as give me better, more useful access to my notes.
I think a big index card box might be in my future. That way, I could record descriptions and concept sketches and then divide and file them by type or category. I could reorganize them easily and move more promising ideas to the front. I could take a card or cards out to the studio for reference. I love this idea! I can still use my Moleskins when I'm out and about (they're my favorite low-tech organizers) and when I decide an idea is worthy enough, I'll transfer it to an index card.
I might just get my desk decluttered yet!