Meanwhile, back at the studio- I DID finally get a carved glass piece finished that I began drawing two years ago. I can chalk that up to my own distractedness and/or the demand for custom work over the last year (which kept me busy with the lure of immediate compensation...).
This piece, "Fishing Heron", is sandblast carved into 12mm (1/2") thick glass and is 52cm X 81cm (20 1/2" X 32") in a wood frame. The feathers in this design illustrate to dramatic effect the 'layered' look of the relief carving as contrasted with the delicate surface etching in the lower right of the design. The soft shading of the surface etching is really easy to over-do, so proper lighting in the sandblasting booth and a deft hand are essential to get the desired effect. As with all sandblasting (etching or carving) you really have to get the result you want on the first pass. The carving takes longer to achieve, as some depth of glass is being removed, but if a mistake is made in depth of cut or sequence of working through the design, there is not much leeway to correct it. As with working with glass in general, there is not a lot of 'forgiveness' for mistakes. Detailed planning and careful execution is always necessary to achieve the desired effect.