Monday, August 20, 2012

Baby Octopi

So there was this adorable picture floating around on the internet of a baby octopus and the second I saw him not only did I fall in love but I needed to create him in glass. I could see him in my mind's eye nearly instantly. Every color and everything in between was suddenly right there - in my head and ready to be made. 

Usually, I sketch everything out and label all the colors before I start a project. This time? I just took a picture of it with my phone and brought it with me to the torch and dove in. And really? I'm not like crazy obsessed or all that in love with octopi! I do think that they're cool but this little baby octopus was just too cute! 

See what I mean? 

I sat for a moment and sized up my project and then just dove in! I started with a nice, milk glass for the inside of the baby - followed that by some pretty reduction brown for his markings- Then I had to somehow solve the problem of where his tentacles were going to go? If I were working with boro I could just make them go any which way but this was soft glass - I think that would end up being completely problematic so I had to think on my feet - My project was 90% done and I still hadn't given him his cute little arms.

Then it occurred to me - He just needed something to "hold on" to. Sure! Okay, that's easy enough. Make a nice bead and then sculpt him into it. I did - it went well and suddenly I had this adorable little octo in my studio with me!

This picture was snapped when I was still working on it so it's about 990 degrees. The colors always come up brighter after it's cooled. That dark blob of a bead? Ended up being a beautiful purple with pink and blue tones in it. Kinda amazing huh? ;) 

Kind of a better shot of the body - the lighting is a bit better here. That's my messy bench in the background that gets cleaned about once a year.. No really ;) 

And here he is cooled off to room temp:
These little creatures are amazing no? 

So I like this, I really do. I think it's not a half bad attempt! Write it down folks, I actually liked something I made! But I want to make some changes to dial in on those fine details that separate a nice bead from a realistic reproduction of a real life living creature. The bead is pretty but I want something that is tapered so it looks more balanced - and if I have something longer I can work on his tentacles a bit better. This bulky bead was kinda hard to work with. Here is my idea for the next go around ...
Now, this is more like me. Think, draw, label, plan and execute! Im excited to reach for a bit more realism with a few changes like giving him an iris to his eye and adding a few more details- giving him two rows of dots on his tentacles instead of one. Being able to taper down his beautiful arms so they look real by pulling stringers ahead of time! And then lastly I will make the clear outer part of his abdomen a bit fuller - so it looks more like he does in real life. 

I'm hoping to have a new prototype available to view by Tuesday. If you're at all interested in getting your hands on one of these guys let me know. Once I get the working prototype in place I should be able to make custom baby octopi! ;) 

Thanks for stopping by... 

Keep creating.. keep the light on.
Namaste, P


Megan said...

I'm astounded how much the colors change once cooled! I had no idea...truly amazing. Thanks for the peek into your process and the education. XO

Payton Jett said...

Thanks Megan and you're welcome! It's part of why glass making can be so challenging. We don't get to see the finished product as wel make it - we do a lot of guess work which is great sometimes - sometimes not so much. The process of glass is interesting. Your brain has to remember all these details about the glass you're working on. Its so technical and I love it ;)

More to come! You aint seen nuttin yet momma!!

Ps we miss u guys!