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April 24, 2017

Test Results :: Inchworm

CiM Inchworm is a (very) bright green colour that retains its beautiful translucency no matter how your torture it in the flame.  The consistency and opacity of this colour is very similar to CiM Crocus, which is also a beautiful translucent that stays that way. It melts beautifully, and my rods of Inchworm were not shocky in the least, and it was not prone to scumming either.  I did get some bubbles in it as I worked it, but not very many.

Here you can see that reducing this colour didn't change the essential greenness of it at all. The smaller spacer looks a bit darker, but I think that's just because there's less glass there so you can see more of my photography background through the glass.

The left side of this bead is Inchworm, and the right side of this bead is Poison Apple. I was really surprised because, for some reason, I was not expecting my Poison Apple to lighten and opacify to this degree. But the joke is on me because, when I go back and look at my test beads for Poison Apple, I see now that they were also fairly opaque.

But here is why the result was so surprising.  Rod colour-wise, Inchworm and Poison Apple are very similar. Inchworm looks a touch more yellow, and a little more translucent.

Inchworm seems greener and more transparent than I remember the much-loved, now-defunct Vetrofond Parrot Green being, but it is what I wanted when I first bought Poison Apple. It seems like this colour could easily replace Poison Apple in the palette, because I don't think anyone buys Poison Apple for the first time hoping for it to opacify and be much lighter after working than it was in the rod.  Poison Apple is beautiful in its own right, though, once you get to know it, so maybe enough people love it that we need both after all.

The only way this colour could be made more exciting is if they put sparkles in it.  I would really like some sparkle colours, and green is as good a place as any for that fun to start.

Silver disappears on top of Inchworm until you reduce and encase it. Reducing it and encasing it made it turn a whitish colour with a blue aura. Silver foil does not discolour at all under Inchworm, continuing to gleam through it in an essentially silvery (but begreened) way.

On Inchworm, silver glass is q uite interesting. My reducing silver glass had strong separation reactions and really popped colour-wise, although those colours are not exactly set off by Inchworm's green-ness. I also got beautiful colours from the TerraNova2 frit.

On top of Inchworm, Copper Green, Opal Yellow, Ivory, and Peace all separate. Inchworm is a very friendly colour, getting along just fine with Ivory. Like Ceylon, this colour seems to cause reactions in other colours but stay pretty calm itself.

These beads all contain some Inchworm.

April 17, 2017

Test Results :: Ceylon

CiM Ceylon is a slightly yellowish medium grey transparent. I've been wanting a greyish brown transparent, and this is close to what I've been craving although I was hoping that when I got a greyish brown that it would be a little warmer in tone - more orange than yellow, if that makes sense.

I found Ceylon pretty straightforward to use, but did get a little bit of scumming, some of the time. You can see more scumming in the leftmost bead below than in the one on the right, and it happened sort of intermittently. As these things go, it was a pretty mild case of that particular problem.

Ceylon does not noticeably change colour with repeated heatings or with exposure to a reduction flame.

On top of Ceylon, silver takes on a bluish cast and forms a lacy crust. When the silver is reduced and encased, it smooths out into a whitish silvery blanket with a blue halo.  When Ceylon is used over silver foil, it turns the foil a golden coppery colour that is quite pretty.

Ceylon is a pretty good base colour for silver glass - both for the reducing colours and the striking ones. If you blow up the picture above, you can see interesting effects in my reducing silver glass and lots of colour in the TerraNova2 frit in the centre bead.  I got some nice stringy effects from Ceylon when pulled into stringer with silver glass frit and used to core the bead on the far right, but this effect was pretty mild when compared with similar tests I did using Effetre Light Brown Transparent, Straw Yellow, Kelp, Pale Green Apple, CiM Mojito, and various other colours.

Ceylon looks yellowish on top of Copper Green and Opal yellow, warmly grey on top of Ivory, and coldly grey on top of Peace.

You can't see Tuxedo on top of Ceylon very easily, but it doesn't seem like there's much of a reaction there.  All of the other colours that I used on top of Ceylon separated. It's fairly unusual for me to have Copper Green, Opal Yellow, Ivory, and Peace all separate on top of the same colour, so Ceylon must be a particularly reactive colour in a curiously universal way.

Other than that, there's nothing else much to share, reaction-wise.

Here are some older beads made with Ceylon:

April 10, 2017

Test Results :: Copper Green

Effetre Copper Green (219) is a medium teal/turquoise opaque glass. It's handpulled and can be on the shocky side, but I don't mind that so much in light of all it's other traits.  It's sort of unbelievable that I am only just now posting test beads for this colour, but it's been included in every test set I've ever posted so I guess it makes sense that I just lost track of not having done it yet.

I love Copper Green.  Mostly I love the colour of it, but I also think it is a pleasantly reactive and versatile colour. I love it so much that I wrote a poem about it on my lunch break one day back in 2009 while at work. That poem won me a box of random glass from Frantz Art Glass, because, I guess, Mike was looking for the corniest possible entry to his poetry contest.

An Ode To Copper Green

In rod form I love you and can't get enough,
It's when I cremate you the going gets tough.

Your colour is tricky and goes all askew
Transforming from green into two shades of blue

With some shades you develop a big, thick black line,
But with purple, the line looks a lot more like wine.

Under clear, you turn yellow! Why is that, o Green?
When you get too hot there's an odd silver sheen...

You spark and you pit and you hate to be hot,
But in spite of all that I still love you a lot.

I'm such a nerd. 

Anyway, Copper Green is both awesome and irritating. It's very reactive, and it develops a yucky grey patina on its surface from its high copper content.  I don't really believe anymore that the sheen that develops on Copper Green is related to the level of heat.  I've found that using Copper Green in combination with some colours limits its ability to develop this patina, but when it's used alone it invariably develops it.  I'd give examples of the colours that it hasn't sheened up with but unfortunately I haven't been tracking that information very closely and am disinclined to read through all of my past blog entries to figure it out.  I'm basically taking a "lazy pass" here. You can do that, if you want :)  Where I've observed it, I have generally mentioned it.

I also used to think that the reason I got so much grey yuckiness on my Copper Green was because I was using a Minor with a 5L concentrator and my flame was probably a bit on the reducing side, but was disabused of that notion when I upgraded my oxycon to a 10L and the sheen kept coming. It's just what Copper Green does.

Once it has sheened up with that greyish muckiness, you have a few options. You can decide that the greyish sheen is a feature rather than a bug and go with the army grey-green-ness of it, you can soak the bead in toilet bowl cleaner, Coca Cola, CLR, pickling solution or some other chemical compound to try to get rid of it (with varying degrees of success), or you can etch it off of the surface of the bead with etching solution or by tumbling it with silicon carbide grit.  I generally go for the tumble-etching option because I love the finish I get on my tumble-etched beads and it always, always works.

Here you can see that I got the yucky grey sheen even on the bead I did not reduce.  I use a 10L concentrator on a Nortel Minor and my flame was not in any way a reducing one.  In the bead that I did reduce, the sheen is a good deal more pronounced and some red patina developed from the copper in the glass coming to the surface.

Silver on top of Copper Green takes on a greyish appearance and gives the glass surface an interestingly aged appearance.  When the silver is reduced and encased, it turns yellow. This yellowing is consistent with results I've gotten on other turquoise/teal colours.  (e.g. CiM Celadon, Reichenbach Pastel Blue)

Copper Green is an average base for silver glass. It doesn't offer a lot of contrast for the reducing silver glasses, but it doesn't impede their natural beauty in any way. With my TerraNova2 frit, I got an interesting halo effect around the fritty bits and some slow starts to the striking sequence.  Probably I could make the frit bloom on this colour with some effort, but there was no magic here.

Reaction summary:

  • Copper Green forms a light halo around Tuxedo dots and lines.  On top of Tuxedo, Copper Green separates but develps a strong greyish sheen so the effect is somewhat disguised. Etching would fix that.
  • Opal Yellow separates on top of Copper Green.
  • Ivory and Copper Green develop a reciprocal dark line reaction.
  • Peace separates on top of Copper Green.

Here are some beads made with Copper Green:

April 4, 2017

Test Results :: Pastel Blue

Reichenbach Pastel Blue (RL3203) is a gorgeous medium turquoise colour.  It's extremely soft, so maybe not the best and least frustrating choice for sculptural work, but it seems to be magical with silver glass and it's very reactive and fun with other colours.

Here's a bunch of tricolour beads that give you an idea how it compares to the other turquoises out there colour-wise.  I made these when I was playing with CiM Quetzal, which is also gorgeous. Kathy, if you're reading this, make more Quetzal please :D

Like some of the other Reichenbach glasses (Raku, Iris Dense Blue) it is very, very "fast" and I've found that it is important to be vigilant with these super-runny colours to make sure that the bead goes into the kiln very cool, otherwise it sticks to other things in there.  It's always important, of course, to be careful of this, but these supersoft, supersaturated colours remain tacky longer than most.

If you reduce Pastel Blue you get a brick red colour.  I found that this effect developed in a blotchy way, but I only did it the once and so that might have been anomaly.  Something that happened with the reduction that I was not expecting is the iridescence that developed on the surface. Most turquoises get the red patina, although it is not always this dark and rich of a red, but this is the only one I've tried that also got a shiny oilslick finish.

This colour turns silver yellow, both when it is and is not encased. The silver isn't very visible on the surface of the unreduced bead because it has dispersed across the surface, but if you reduce it and encase it, you can see that it's still very much there.  Not maybe the most attractive combination, but I like to see how all of the glasses behave with silver :)

Like other turquoises, reducing silver glass is a bit of a wash on this colour because it doesn't provide much contrast, but I got some beautiful colours out of my TerraNova2 frit.

Pastel Blue sort of lost its opacity when used on top of Tuxedo and I'm not sure how to describe what happened. My Pastel Blue dots and lines on top of Tuxedo have a translucent, battered appearance and look almost purple in places.  And then in the rightmost bead, you can see that when I used Tuxedo on top of Pastel Blue, nothing interesting happened at all. Weird.

Pastel Blue separates on top of Copper Green, and Copper Green separates on top of Pastel Blue. Reciprocity!

Pastel Blue loses some of its opacity and develops a dark vein of blueness through the centre of stringer lines drawn on top of Opal Yellow. On top of Pastel Blue, Opal Yellow separates and looks distinctly yellow. Much yellower than it looked when I used it as the base colour.

Pastel Blue and Ivory develop a black line reaction between them. As an added bonus, Pastel Blue takes on a mottled appearance on top of Ivory which I rather like. This is worth doing more of.

I had a bit of a brain fart when I made these beads and after making the one with the Pastel Blue base, I couldn't figure out whether I'd used Opal Yellow or Peace where I was meant to be placing the Peace stringer lines and dots.  To compensate, I made an extra bead that had Peace on top of Pastel Blue, just in case. In that extra little bead, you can see that on top of Pastel Blue, Peace does not really react at all.  On top of Peace, Pastel Blue spreads and looks translucent.

I only had a small amount of this colour, so I haven't been able to do much with it.  I made these beads with Pastel Blue, Purple Rose, and something else that I don't remember.