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The Market at Limoges

We have been so busy in the studio since restarting after the Covid lockdown that I have had this piece sitting waiting to be blown for a couple of months. Brendon and I finally blew it last week. I also started painting the same image on canvas at home last week. Here are a few different views of the finished glass piece and the canvas with just the underpainting (complementary colours). The drawing is from one of the development days I attended when I worked at The Learning Connexion.  I ...

November 11, 2020

Whangarei promotional video

September 12, 2020

Great Gates of Kiev

We are getting a lot of rain again and so I have been able to do a bit of painting on canvas for a change. Here are the Great Gates of Kiev on a new canvas. Quite a bit more work to do but this shows the general idea. I hope to paint a few more of the Mussorgsky series on canvas. Below is the original watercolour sketch, the underpainting (complementary colours) and the same work on glass.  ...

August 18, 2020

Catacombs - Pictures at an Exhibition

Catacombs is the first of the three painted pieces I worked on during Covid-19 lockdown. Brendon Sole assisted me and the blowing went very well considering we are both just getting back to blowing after a three month break. We will blow the other two over the next few weeks. ...

July 2, 2020


I just found the original print on Google. ...

June 1, 2020

Hot Air Balloon

I started this painting 7 years ago and it is great to re-start work on it again. My technique has evolved as a result of the recent series I have completed on glass. I hope the next canvas painting I do will be the first of the same Pictures at an Exhibition series. I am working on the patio and hope to have the front closed in with blinds in the next month. It is getting a bit cold some days as we slide into winter. ...

May 23, 2020


So now I have set up the patio for painting on canvas. I have brought home my paints and easel and unwrapped a painting of a crazy drawing of a giant balloon village. This was started over 7 years ago, before I bought the glass studio. It looks a bit weird at the moment because I was painting this over another painting. Great to be using the oil paints again. ...

May 20, 2020

Pictures at an Exhibition part II

Once Promenade III - Windmills is finished I won't be able to do any more painting on glass, until I restart the furnace and make some more blanks. I might even find some canvas at the studio and get my oil paints out. I am keen to start working on some of the Pictures at an Exhibition series in a different media. Once New Zealand moves to Covid-19 level-2 we will start cleaning and repairing the recuperator. I am pretty sure this has a air leak. We will need to roll the furnace out of the ...

May 10, 2020

Pictures at an Exhibition Part 1

I thought I would share some of the images I have of the process and the finished results from the series I am painting based on the music suit Pictures at an Exhibition by the Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky. It has taken me a couple of years to work through all the movements (pictures) and the promenades. I discovered I had drawn Catacombs and The Market, Limoges and not put them on glass, so those are the ones I have been working on at home. Here they are: one ready to blow and the ot...

April 25, 2020

Covid 19 lockdown

During the first week of the lock-down I shut the furnace down. Hopefully I took long enough to prevent any damage. I intend to start it again before I do a rebuild, because I may only need to run it for a few months to keep up with demand for new stock. When the lock-down was announced we were on a sales trip to the South Island. This also involved visits to family, including our new grandson, 8 days old when we met him as a suitable social distance. It was an interesting journey home and ...

April 13, 2020

All the way from Sweden

6 ton of Glasma 705A glass batch arrived from Sweden last week. Minimal damage from fork lifts this time. The Hi-ab truck made unloading easy; dropped just outside the studio door ready for me and Brendon to roll into the studio. We did have to spend the previous day cleaning out the space to accommodate this amount of batch. ...

February 28, 2020

Trying to let go

I am trying to give my body a break after six and a half years of mostly solo blowing. I know from other studio owners that there comes a point when you need to get help, or permanently stuff up wrists etc. It is a big step to let a couple of other guys take over some of the blowing work in the studio, but as these photos show I am giving it a go. Brendon and Shawn both have plenty of skill and drive and are essential for growing the studio up here in Whangarei. ...

February 20, 2020

Full-time Assistant

Here's a few photos of my new assistant, Brendon, at work in my studio today. This is his second day at work. He is looking forward to making his work with the excellent Swedish glass I use, once he has got settled in. He is finding it a bit hotter than Whanganui, where he has been a valued assistant and glass blower since I was a student with him in 2004. As well as his experience with glass blowing and assisting he has great skills with cold working (grinding and polishing) glass. I rang him i...

February 16, 2020

New tumblers

The new ones are lime green and Water Lily.  ...

January 23, 2020

The Hundertwasser is happening

Since the piling finished we don't hear or feel much from the building site. I cycle past the construction site most days and suddenly realised how much progress has been made over the last six months. You can see the the basic outline of the building is starting to take shape...

December 10, 2019

It's nearly Christmas !!!

And a local German Frau wanted some clear ones for her Christmas tree (Europeans appreciate clear glass). And then Shawn made a few more as they were selling from the studio sales table. ...

November 21, 2019

Paintings on show in the studio

I have finally managed to hang some paintings in the studio. Some have been unwrapped for the first time since we moved six years ago. This move was inspired by a possibility that may come to pass soon. If it does I will let you know. Meanwhile someone is coming to buy a painting next week. The person contacted me the same day that I hung these ones, which I think is auspicious, although the purchase has been planned for a year or so :-) I hope to be able to start painting on canvas again soon. ...

July 27, 2019

Wood Blocks for Glass Blowing

One of my glass blowing students lent me her lathe while she went overseas for a few months. I cut down a Tristaniopsis Laurina (alias water gum), an Australian tree that grows like a weed in Northland. It was us big enough to turn a woodblock for glass blowing. It was a bit of a struggle as I don't really know what I am doing but it turned out OK. The next one will be better because I have joined the Northland Woodturners group at the Quarry Arts Centre and am now able to get advice, watch...

May 8, 2019

I won the McDonald Equipment prize at the glass conference

The old Castle, The Great Gates of Kiev, The Cattle and Gnomus. Below is the next in the series - Tuilerie Gardens and I am currently working on Promenade.  These works were painted on small, sandblasted glass blanks using Paradise Paints. The paintings are based on blind contour drawings made while walking, a process I developed for investigating “the everyday” for my Masters in Art and Design. Once painted and thoroughly dried I heated each piece to 570°C overnight, picked it up on a...

February 24, 2019

Photos by Simon Gould-Thorpe

Simon was in the studio a couple of days ago watching me blow glass. He took a few photos of me blowing tumblers and kindly sent them to me, Here they are. ...

February 11, 2019

Glass Blowing Video

Joules, Dani and Summer arranged to visit my studio to make a video of glass blowing. They did a great job as you can see in the finished video. I hope to see them back here soon to try this amazing art for themselves. ...

December 10, 2018

Hundertwasser Art Centre, Whangarei

A few months ago a start was made on demolishing the old Harbour Board Building to make way for the new Hundertwasser Art Centre. A bunch of us from the local businesses were there when the first pile was vibrated into the ground. I took a piece of my glass and placed it on a light box next to the rig to see if we were going to have problems with the piling. It did not move at all. Since then we have felt the vibrations every week day and sometimes on the weekends as the pilers try and keep on s...

November 9, 2018

The Other Day in 2016

Rebecca Heap found this photo of Brendan Sole and I casting the furnace roof  for the Glass School furnace. This was part of our furnace building elective. Although I now build furnaces to a different design, what I learnt on this course was invaluable when I bought my own studio in 2013. ...

October 5, 2018

Fifth Anniversary of the Grinter Glass Studio

Five years ago on 16th September 2013 I moved into the glass studio created by Keith Mahy in the Town Basin Whangarei. I left the ute and trailer parked in the loading zone half the day because I was busy in the studio and got a $14.00 fine. The next day Garry Nash helped me get the furnace, glory hole and annealer sorted. By the weekend I had made my first batch of glass from the raw materials left in the studio and started blowing glass. I lived in our caravan for the first 8 months and rememb...

September 19, 2018

Photographs by Dave Kerr

Photographer Dave Kerr was in the studio a few days ago and sent me a couple of the images he took of me blowing. In the top photo I was reducing the black lustre. The reducing flame turns silver oxide into pure silver on the surface of the glass to create a shiny lip-wrap. In the photo below I was cooling the next piece ready for the last gather of clear glass over the coloured core.  You can see more of Dave Kerr's photography at

September 5, 2018 Posts 1-25 of 65 | Page next

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