Tuesday, July 3, 2007

The Mosaic Conundrum

Several years ago, I spied some beautiful stained glass-type windows in one of my favorite stores. I saved my money and after many months, decided to purchase a couple for my kitchen windows. I am not the domestic sort (see that big dead fly on the left of the sill?) but when I unload the dishwasher or work in the kitchen, it makes me happy to see this flash of color. The windows are actually not stained glass at all. They are old
windows with the glass intact. The artist has arranged various glass tiles and pieces, glued them to the glass, and then grouted to fill in the blank spaces. It seems a lot less complicated than stained glass. (I'll take a tube of glue over a hot soldering iron any ol' day.) But, unlike stained glass, you really only get the brilliant colors from one side.

Two years ago, I was asked to donate something handmade for a charity event. I cut pieces of plywood and glued mosaic tiles directly onto the wood. It was fun to lay out the different designs and they were fairly simple to make. (I apologize for the quality of these photos...awful, I know.) I am really not into bright colors or glass for that matter, but it was interesting to work with this medium...kind of like putting a puzzle together; and, the stained glass effect brought back fond childhood memories of staring out the color-filled windows of Jesus and the Virgin Mary instead of listening to the priest.

I then decided to try my hand at making a mosaic window. As you can see, I lost interest before I even got the thing grouted. Even though I used Weldbond glue (which is recommended for mosaics and supposed to dry clear), you can still see glue marks on the clear circle pieces. That kind of ruins it for me. Not sure what I did wrong there, but if anyone has any suggestions, please let me know.

My next foray into mosaics was at Art & Soul in Laurie Mika's class. I had never taken a class from Laurie, and while I think her art is amazing, I wasn't sure I had what it took to be a mosaic kind of girl. Well, turns out I didn't. Below is another unfinished project that I have almost pitched in the trash countless times. In fact, just to take these photos, I had to dig in the garage and finally found this sad forgotten piece under an old cat litter box and my husband's tools. At one point, I thought it had potential, but now...well, let's just say it's been relegated to the land of unfinished art...kind of like Rudolph and the Island of Misfit Toys. Oh well, I tried. At least it has the ungrouted window along with Hermey (the elf who prefers dentistry over making toys) to hang out with.


katydiddy said...

I like these! I like the house of shimmer & I really like the glass window with the faux plates in it. Don't forget imperfections are part of the whole idieart/handmade thing!

jenny holiday said...

Ok...well...I just have to tell you that this lil "misfit" is super duper sweet!! Such happy happy elements!! Really really cute!!!!

I do know exactly where you are coming from though. We have a closet just for this sort of thing. : )

I will be emailing you in a lil bit! :)

Enjoy your Saturday!!

xoxo Jenny

jessi nagy said...

these are wonderful. o love them. what a colorful kitchen your going to have. it just might bring out the domestic godess in you... well if not they are sure purdy to look at.
jessi nagy


Anonymous said...

I love the circular one! I think it's awesome. There may be a better way to do the glue, since I only dabble minimally, I don't know. But I'd put that piece up in a heart beat!

bluemuf said...

I really love the unfinish glass window and the mosaic piece.


Corey Moortgat said...

I love the colors and the bunny and chick images on your mosaic!

Valita said...

I think you just need to finish the shimmer house. It is so cute!