Flameworking is working with glass over a concentrated flame and typically results in smaller scale glass works like beads, marbles and small sculptures. However, flameworking is also used extensively in the scientific world for glass instruments, tools and devices like test tubes and more complicated lab equipment. Flameworkers hold either solid rods and cane or small hollow tubes over the concentrated flame to heat specific areas enough to join pieces or sculpt them. Other then the glass, torch and a large set of tweezers not too many other hand tools are necessary, although many artists have added tools to add them with their techniques.
Each artists’ process varies but all agree that trial and error is part of the process. As in many artistic endevours, the challenges in flameworking come from both the technical aspect of working with glass and heat as well as the artistic aspects of realizing your visions and goals in the medium. Each of our resident flameworkers gain inspiration from different sources, everything from real life observation, to experiments, to the kids that walk through and ask questions and/or make comments about what they are doing.