Cast Glass Selected for Small Sculpture Show - 17th Apr 2013

Di Tocker's new cast glass work High Expectations has been selected for the 2013 Small Sculpture Prize at Waiheke Community Art Gallery by Matt Ellwood, Senior Lecturer, Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design,

A total of 35 works have been selected for the 2013 Small Sculpture Prize exhibition.  Selector Matt Ellwood commented that “it was very hard to make decisions as all entries were of a very high caliber.”  Over 70 entries were received and most included two submissions.

The Exhibition Opening and Award Ceremony will be held on Saturday 4 May at 5pm.  Matt Ellwood will speak about his selection and Craig Little from Davis Funerals, the sponsors, will present the Award.  This event will be a ticketed event for Gallery Members and other Guests.  Tickets are $25 per person available through the Waiheke Community Art Gallery.

Casting Glass - lolly shop now open! - 21st Mar 2013

blackwood casting crystal New stock of Blackwood Casting Crystal has arrived in New Zealand.  Di Tocker of Dicastglass, online supplier of glass casting materials has just received 200kg from Australia.

Di says "Its just like being in a lolly shop for glassies when I get to unpack all the glass.  I can't help but wonder what this gorgeous raw material will end up as when it is cast".

Blackwood Casting Crystal is Di's chosen glass for using in closed and open kiln molds. 

Benefits of Blackwood Casting Crystal

Artisan glass, handcrafted in Victoria, Australia, Blackwood Casting Crystal has many benefits.

Quality
- With 35% lead content, Blackwood Casting Crystal provides a true transparent quality to cast glass works.
Volume
- 35% lead content gives you a high volume to weight ratio.
Precise measurement
- It is supplied as (un-annealed) chunks.
The chunks are easy to break, allowing for exact measurement of glass quantities.
Colours
- An excellent range of very organic-like colours.
- All colours are compatible and blend well.
- Striking colours are reliable. (striking glasses are those which change colour with heat application - reds, golds, white)
Molding qualities
- Glass releases well from molds. (Note: this is dependent on mold quality and firing schedule)
- Suitable for closed and open mold casts.
- Suitable for use with crucible (pot) or direct into the mold.
Finishing
- Optimal surface can be achieved with little cold working. (Note: This is dependent on required results.)
- Responds well to sanding, grinding and polishing.

Colours and Cost of Blackwood Casting Crystal

Casting Crucibles (aka Terracotta Pots) - 12th Mar 2013

If you need crucibles (aka terracotta pots) for casting then Di Tocker of Dicastglass can help you.  She has a full range of sizes in stock to match your glass casting needs.

Crucible Sizes In Stock - Dicastglass

  • 9cm vase
  • 11cm vase
  • 13cm vase
  • 15cm vase
  • 19cm vase
  • 19cm ribbed bowl
  • 23cm ribbed bowl

Crucible Casting Tips

  • Use the smallest size you need.
  • Clean the crucible thoroughly and sand around the hole.
  • Use each crucible only once, as devitrification in the casting glass may occur.

Making Rubber Molds - a fun challenge - 26th Feb 2013

Students who recently undertook Di Tocker's Rubber Mold Making Course had a lot to think about about over the 2.5 days in her studio.  Rubber molds can be a challenging task.  Each student made their own rubber mold from a personal object. 

The six who attended came from various backgrounds including some who have done previous workshops with Di, some who have learned cast glass with other tutors and a bronze caster.

Rubber Molds - useful tools

Di says "Rubber molds are a very useful tool in the casting studio.  They will last for 100's of wax pours, can be very accurate with detail or serve as a 'blank' for creating base wax forms to slightly alter with each use".  To create this accuracy a complicated process to produce the mold is required.  All six students produced successful molds which they can now take home to work with.

Workshop Participant - Comments

"The process is a complex one and we most definitely needed the two-and-a-half days to complete our molds. Di demonstrated every step and provided us with comprehensive written instructions, which will be invaluable for future reference. The group was also small enough that Di could observe what everyone was doing and provide help to those who were having difficulty"

"I really liked seeing everyone else’s work, I learn just as much by seeing other people push their ideas as I do by pushing my own.  The best thing is, my mind is once again buzzing with ideas and I cannot wait to do the next course.  Thanks for everything Di. You’re a fantastic and patient teacher and that is perfect for me".

"I have attended several courses over the years and found Di's teaching technique to be the best I've experienced. She is not only an extremely accomplished glass artist, but she is happy to share her knowledge and has the patience required to cope with different levels of experience".



Glass Casting Supplies - Shop Online - 12th Feb 2013

Glass enthusiasts throughout New Zealand are now enjoying the ease of shopping for supplies online.  Buying supplies for glass casting has always been a time consuming process, as there are many and varied materials required, and these have (in the past) needed to be sourced from lots of different outlets.

In response, Di Tocker has added an online store for Casting Supplies to her website. Customers can rest assured that the products Di stocks have been tried and tested in her own glass casting studio where she works full-time creating art pieces, commissions and teaches.

Dicastglass Casting Supplies  - Current Stocklist 

Molding Materials

Dental Plaster, Silica 350, Fibreglass, Grog

Wax Working

Wax, Wax knife curved, Wax knife straight, Wax knife spatula, Wax pen, Wax pen tips

Glass

Blackwood Lead Crystal - 22 colours available

Kiln Items

Terracotta pots - 9cm,11cm, 13cm, 15cm, 19cm, 23cm, Pot props - 75mm,110mm, 150mm

Cold Working - Finishing

Silica carbide grit - 80, 220, 400, 600, Diamond handpads, Diamond canvas strip, Micromesh MXD strip, Cerium, Pumice

Safety

Disposable gloves, Face Masks, Aprons, Safety glasses

Crazy Fun with Clay - 5th Feb 2013

A new glass casting course was offered by Di Tocker this summer as part of the (Get)Creative Summer Workshop series run in conjunction with Wintec, Hamilton.

Di named the workshop Explore Glass Casting (open molds and clay models) as the participants did just that.  This was an exercise in exploring the possibilites of molding with soft clay, creating a mold around the clay and then removing the soft clay once the plaster mold had set.

The students completed 2 small works on day 1 to get a feel for clay and plaster molding.  Day 2 was about spending more time with the clay, adding detail and working larger.  Students who had previously worked in wax noted that they really enjoyed the freedom the clay gave them to be 'looser' with the modelling material.  Di said "I was blown away with the level of detail the students could produce from the clay models.  It has turned out to be a very succesful way to work and I will keep it in mind for some of my own projects that may suit the process".

Give the Gift of Glass - 20th Nov 2012

Vouchers are now available at Dicastglass.

Available in $50 and $100 they are the ideal gift for the Cast Glass Enthusiast.

Vouchers are valid for 12 months from date of purchase and redeemable for any of the following-

Cast Glass Workshops

Casting Supplies

Di Tocker's Cast Glass Artwork



Glass Casting Success for Six - 15th Nov 2012

Glass Casting Success for Six The weather was starting to fine up outside...but this group of six were not here to admire the view!

Enthusiastically they embraced the principles of glass casting over 3 fun-filled days and each took away an awesome piece of finished cast glass. Once again they came from afar; four from the Waikato and others from Wellington and Nelson.

And as per usual the variety of great ideas for glass impressed me. Check out the photos and see for your self!

Some comments from the group about the workshop;
Very good - would recommend to others. I especially like the glass used (blackwood casting crystal). Benefit from the fact that you (Di) are professionally trained and have lots of experience.

I am very happy with the course, as a beginners course I think it covers the basics very well. All my questions answered (and I had plenty!)

I came wanting to learn the basics of cast glass and the course met my expectations fully.

Very professional and well organised.

Had a blast - nice and relaxing.

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