How's that for an oxymoron? Years ago I met another lampworker, Rona, who said "I get twitchy if I don't torch". I now understand her completely because it is a place to detach and lose myself. The noises are constant, the hiss of the torch and almost rhythmic sound of breathing from the oxygen concentrator - these soothing sounds allow my ideas to spill out and materialize on my mandrels.
This is a peek into one of my annealing kilns where the beads settle in while I continue to work. It's about 1000 degrees in there so the heating element is red-hot! When I'm done adding beads, it processes an annealing schedule automatically and over the next 10 hours will cool to room temperature. This process assures that the glass beads have cooled slowly, releasing the stress that builds inside the bead by allowing a very s-l-o-w & even drop in temperature.