Flameworking 101 with Carla Camasso

Marbles created by students in Carla’s Flameworking 101 class.

Have you ever wanted to experience the magic of moving molten glass? Flameworking 101 might be the class for you! We are lucky to have Carla Camasso join us again in the beginning of March to teach the art of flamework, also known as lampwork. Carla is a glass artist currently living in Asheville, North Carolina. Using a torch to melt and manipulate borosilicate glass, her work is greatly inspired by the beauty of nature. Learn more about Carla in this sweet interview I did with her in the Folk School Dining Hall during the week of her last class with us.

Carla working on the torch in the Folk School studio

CP: What is flamework?

CC: Flamework is a form of glass work. You use a table top torch to sculpt and melt rods of glass and glass color into many different shapes and forms. This week we are making marbles, pendants, ornaments, and small sculptures.

CP: How is flamework different from bead making?

CC: Bead making in done with soft glass. My class is focusing on borosilicate glass, which is a harder glass. It’s more user friendly, so it’s great for those just starting in glass.

 

 

Glass flower by Carla Camasso

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Sienna’s First Class: Enameling

Enameled Bowl by Sienna

The summertime at the Folk School offers two opportunities for people under the age of 18 to take classes at the Folk School: Little/Middle Folk School and Intergenerational Week. For many young people, this is an ongoing tradition, so what happens when you turn 18 and age out of these programs? Do not fret, you are not banished from the Folk School! On the contrary, now you can take ANY class all year long.

I recently met Sienna Bosch, an 18-year-old recent high school graduate from Fort Collins, CO who was taking “Beginning Techniques in Enamel” with Christie Schuster. She was here with her mom, who was in printmaking class, and her dad, who taught woodturning. I sat down with her and talked about her experience. Enjoy our interview!

Sienna Bosch

CP: Had you been to the Folk School before this trip?

SB: I had never been to the Folk School before this trip. I had heard a lot about it from my sister and parents, but this was my first time at the Folk School.

CP: Do you have a favorite craft?

SB: I don’t necessarily have a favorite, I work mostly in wood, metal, and wire, but I really enjoy trying new things and experimenting with a variety of crafts.

Enameled Bowl by Sienna

CP: Why did you decide to take Enameling?

SB: I decided to take enameling because it was something that I had never tried before, but was interested in. I had seen pictures of enameled copper and was curious what the process was like. There were many classes that sounded interesting to me, but enameling really sparked my interest. Continue reading Sienna’s First Class: Enameling

Living a Crafty Life: My Interview with Kay Patterson

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Kay teaching int the Jewelry Studio
Kay teaching in the Jewelry Studio

Kay and Tom Patterson are teaching Hand Engraving here in the Jewelry Studio this week. You can find Kay teaching many times throughout the year at the Folk School in a variety of subjects including Jewelry, Metalwork, Felt Making, Enameling, and Shoe Making. She also supports the school’s Enameling and Hot/Warm Glass programs as Studio Assistant. I sat down with Kay to learn a little bit more about her life, inspirations, and her crafts. Enjoy our interview!

CP: How did you first become involved with the Folk School?

KP: Tom and I had moved here in 1992 from southern Oregon and didn’t even know about the Folk School at the time. At the time, Tom was working as a hand engraver for a signet ring company. That allowed use to live anywhere we wanted to because his work was all by mail. I was working for a florist when I got word that the Folk School wanted someone to answer the phone on the weekends (this was before the era of cell phones). When I worked one Saturday overnight, I stayed Keith House and the dance was happening. I met people in the community and would watch the dancing, and that was the first thing that got me curious about the Folk School. I was interested in both craft and music.

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A variety of recycled jewelry pieces made out of copper and recycled materials (L-R: Pin by Kay; hair pin made by Leah Dolgoy, a student’s pin in progress).

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Fire It Up!


Fire shapes, molds, melts, cooks, burns, and cures. Many traditional crafts (think Blacksmithing, Cooking, Glass, Enameling, and Clay) rely on fire to make magical transformations possible. Come light up at the Folk School and learn how fire can mold raw material in beautiful fine craft pieces.

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Adventures in Kaleidoscope Land

Scott Cole

Earlier this month, I had the chance to take a class on kaleidoscopes with longtime Folk School instructor Scott Cole. I’ve taken many classes at the Folk School, but I’ll admit I was a little daunted to work with glass and metal, both materials I’ve had little experience with.

The first night, we set up our studio as a group, looked at examples of the many styles of kaleidoscopes, and had our first small challenge: taping a set of three long mirrors together to create the reflective pattern found in many kaleidoscopes. Our first night’s homework was deceptively simple: take home your mirrors and master their assembly.

The next day, Scott walked us through the process for making a basic brass kaleidoscope. We learned to cut glass, cut our mirrors, glue with epoxy (occasionally a sticky mess for some of us), and how to shape small pieces of glass for our kaleidoscopes’ object cell. While our first kaleidoscopes had matching exteriors and mirror systems, we each found ways to personalize our scopes in ways that matched our individual sense of color, movement, and texture. Continue reading Adventures in Kaleidoscope Land