Last weekend I participated in a wonderful glass bead making class with Kristen Frantzen Orr, an acclaimed bead artist. According to her website “Kristen’s handmade glass beads blend her love of nature with her background as a watercolor artist. A single bead can take hours to make, as she draws and sculpts with molten glass over the flame of an oxygen-propane torch. To add detail to her work, she makes special canes from multiple colors of glass, and by combining these component parts with layers of transparent colors, she creates depth and captures an exciting play of light.” Kristen has had her beads published in many books and magazines. Recently she was featured in the December, 2013 Soda Lime Times “Allstar” edition.
Here is Kristen demonstrating:
Here is the bead she made:
Kristen taught us how to hold both ends of the mandrel for better control. Kristen also described this technique in the Soda Lime Times. We learned how to make multi-layered striped cane for flowers, stems, and leaves. We made both round cane and flat cane. We also learned 3 different interesting base beads.
Here are some of the class beads. I made the bead on the right. I am pleased with how it turned out.
The class was taught at Graceful Customs Studio in Gilroy. Thank you Grace and Jelveh for bringing Kristen to this area.