• Jessica Bartlett

Notes from the studio: October.


Notes from the Studio:

October.

For me thoughts have turned to making in earnest ready for the markets and festive season to come. As all my work is hand engraved, each piece takes time and care and therefore planning. At this time of year, inspiration comes freely, every outing brings handfuls of leaves to draw and engrave so expect to see more of these creations in my insta feed and on Etsy. I have also started to make and sell my snowflake decorations again (see picture) these are proving popular already this year as I think they make a great stocking filler.


At the 'pop up' I did last Saturday at White Stuff I had some really interesting conversations about the processes I use. Sometimes I take it for granted that people know how my glass pieces are made when actually it's not obvious. So I thought I would give you more insight into the processes I use to engrave my glass. I use a Dremel engraver, this is a hand held tool, a lot like a drill. I have a range of tips and nibs I can attach to make different marks on the glass and I am always on the lookout for more. I can change the frequency of the vibrations to scratch the glass. This is why I describe my work as ‘beautifully scratched.’ ( to view my glassworks click here)


I also have a 'pin vice' which holds the diamond tip to create a pen like tool which allows me to manually scratch the glass this gives me more control but of course takes more time. I tend to use this to start a piece by sketching out the shape and also to finish it off, to add the last few detailed marks. All my work is engraved freehand on to the glass, as this gives a spontaneity and element of risk that gives the work it’s character and charm.

Occasionally I use a dry marker to give rough guides for shape and scale, normally for 3d work, for example glasses and vases as these are more tricky to get the composition correct first time.

I use my sketchbook every day to make notes and drawings, all my ideas start in the sketchbook first before being realised on the glass. This is also where I keep all the leaves that I find for sketching at a later date. The edge of the cut glass is wrapped in copper before I encase the edge in solder. I finally solder the fixings from which it can hang from my trademark blue ribbon.

I am still learning and ‘researching’ the techniques I need by watching YouTube videos (a never-ending wealth of information!) but I find the best way of learning, like so many things, is by giving it a go.


Alongside my usual plaques and hangings, I have been working on a jewellery line. This has been a long time in the making as I had to find the right way to finish the glass. I have found a lead-free, silver solder that will work well and keep the transparent quality which I feel is important to the uniqueness of my work. I will be launching the collection in the next couple of weeks, so stay tuned! If you would like to hear more then please sign up to my mailing list and I will keep you up to date

#Engraving #glass #ideas #Seasonal #Sketchbook

Jessica Bartlett Artist

37 Phillip Street

Bedminster

Bristol BS3 4EA

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© The Artist Jessica Bartlett