Posted on

Announcing: The Kiln Formed Glass Club (KFGC) – Canadian Chapter

The Glass eMotions Studio

Glass eMotions Logo

Introducing a new way to develop your glass making skills …

The Kiln Formed Glass Club (KFGC-CDN) – Canadian Chapter 2019 will be open for enrollments in September!

The Kiln Formed Glass club was the brainchild of Liz Sparkes, Glassification and is now going into it’s 3rd year!  Running a successful glass workshop specializing in splash backs meant Liz hardly ever got round to trying out new techniques. Books languished on the shelves, whilst eBooks and tutorials cluttered up the hard drive, waiting for that moment to “get around to it”! She knew she probably wasn’t alone!  In 2016, she developed the idea further, and the first Club kicked off in 2016.  

In collaboration with Liz, Glass eMotions will be hosting the Canadian Chapter – and boy are we excited!  Liz and I are working out some details but we should have it nailed by the beginning of September.  What a great opportunity for all levels of Canadian Fusers.

What is the Kiln Formed Glass Club – CDN?

The unique thing about the Club is that it is just that, a group of people learning together. There is no (one!) tutor. This way of learning, called peer to peer learning, can be incredibly rewarding. Within any one group of glass artists there will be someone who knows something about something.. by pooling our knowledge, and by researching articles, tutorials and eBooks freely available on the web, we create a rich learning environment for all. 

And the best thing is, it doesn’t matter what your current skill level, our experience of this year has been even newbies have something to share, and seasoned professionals learn a lot too!   And of course with no tutor fees to pay, it became a very cost effective way to improve.

So, how does it work ….The Club meets 4 times a year at weekends at the Glass eMotions studio in Ottawa, Ontario CANADA … and each weekend has a ”topic” to be explored. The aim is to keep things as flexible as possible, whilst keeping some structure to the Club. So, you sign up for 4 weekends, and pick the dates and or topics that suit you. 

We are planning on running 16 weekends over the year, some topics are duplicated, some run several times, with a maximum of 12 members per meet up. This means that you should always be able to pick the date and topic you want.  AND if you want more (and space allows) you can Pay as you Go for additional weekends.
What techniques do we cover? The club is very democratic, the members decide what we are doing! However Liz has found that the favourite topics were as follows:
  • “Working with Powders and Enamels” covering techniques such as wafers, crackle, landscapes, and 3D imagery.
  • “Drop Vessels”
  • “Working with Flow” pattern bars, and other ways to use the way glass moves in the kiln to create interesting effects.
  • “Cold Working “ (stop sighing! lol) covering sandblasting, engraving etching and cold fusion (aka glueing!) (the surprising winner for new members last year!!)
  • “Raking , Combing & Pot Melts” so anything hot.
  • Vitrigraph
  • Interpreting a Theme and thinking like an artist (for this for those of us put off entering our work into exhibitions!!)
  • Casting and mould making

Once enrolments have been made, we will finalise the topic for each weekend.

FAQs

Can I pay in installments? Yes. You can pay in 2 installments if you wish, but you will need to have paid in full before the 1st weekend meeting.

Do I have to sign up for 4 weekends? Please be aware you are paying $650 (+HST) CDN for a year’s membership of the Club, which entitles you to 4 (2-day) weekend workshop events, access to use of the workshop’s tooling and kiln hire at a reduced rate, as well as discounts on products that can be bought in bulk for the members. Your weekends may be taken at any time during the year, and changed if required. 

Is there somewhere to stay locally? Check out this handy Google Map showing you various options in the Ottawa area – as well as some great things to check out while you are here.           Glass eMotions Ottawa Tour Map

I don’t drive. Can I get to the workshop easily? If you can get yourself to Ottawa, (air, railway or bus station) Crystal is happy to pick you up from there. Alternatively there may be someone else coming from your area who is willing to car share, so let Crystal know if you need help getting to and from, and she will try and find a way for you.

What happens if I can’t make a weekend for some reason? Again, the aim is to be flexible, so if you miss a weekend, you can join any available weekend to make up for it.

Are materials included in the club fees? Some are, but not glass. In principle the rule is, if you can take it home with you, it’s extra. So Crystal provides all the consumables for each topic required, fibre paper, thin fire, glues, glass cleaning materials etc, and most of the equipment required (i.e. sandblaster, various kilns, cold working equipment, tile saws, grinders etc) Sometimes it helps if members bring some of their own equipment too, (i.e. kiln posts, or favourite cutting tools). We use a FB group page to discuss what is needed for the next weekend , if anything.

I’m not sure how it can work without a tutor does anyone learn anything properly? The answer is yes, absolutely, but it is harder to explain HOW! It can be chaos on occasions with up to 12 people with different ideas on how to attempt something, but on the whole it’s truly inspiring to see what you can achieve without someone showing you step by step how to do it “their way”.. in fact we could argue that we learn more in many ways. Take the drop vessel weekend as an example.  Having researched many different ways of creating drop vessels, freely available on the internet. Then 20 people (in 2 groups) set about trying out the various ways. By the end of the 2 weekends we had learned SO much from these 40 odd examples.. if we’d had a tutor, we would only have learned one way… Think of the club as a structured way to experiment, and you get the picture…

Do you know the dates on offer yet? Glass eMotions will be looking to fill 2 groups of 10 over 8 weekends.  Dates will be announced once I open the Club for registrations.  Topics are yet to be decided by the members.

Got a burning question? Then just email Crystal @ cloke@glassemotions.ca or give her a ring on 613-698-5711

What do I do now?

All you have to do right now is let Crystal know you would like to enroll by emailing below – or to email her if you have any queries and she will let you know how to enroll.

Once all enrollments have been processed, you will have access to a Club Membership website where you can book your weekends, and also a (private) Club Facebook Page where you can start to meet other members and ask them any question you may have.