Monthly Archives: October 2021

Cleaved-Glass Mosaics by Joe Moorman, composite 10/14/2021

Importance and Limitations of Small Mosaics

Making a series of smaller works instead of one large work is the best way to improve your art.

The reason is obvious: instead of investing all your time in executing the larger image, which might already be flawed or compromised long before it is completed, you get several opportunities to get it right.

In addition to getting several more chances, you also have the benefit of looking at your previous attempt and seeing what you did wrong and would like to try differently on the next work.

That is why most of the teachers and artists who recommend “a series of smalls” also recommend that the smalls be the same composition or at least variations on the same composition or theme.

Even if your small works are different compositions, you still spend a higher percentage of your studio time making and evaluating decisions (actively learning) compared to making one large work, where the decisions are made once and most of the time is spent on execution.

This shift of focus from execution to decision making via “a series of smalls” is critical in learning the medium of mosaic because mosaic takes so much more time and effort than painting or drawing, especially when the work is large. Tiles and mortar are heavy.

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Halloween Mosaic Coasters

Halloween Mosaic Coaster Kit

Ivana and Natalija have made some Halloween-themed mosaic coasters, and Natalija even put together a Halloween Mosaic Coaster Kit. The kit comes with the tile and materials needed, but it doesn’t come with a pattern.

As always, we encourage people to make their own designs, but we do have instructions for copying images to make a mosaic pattern.

Here is how you can make a mosaic pattern from any image by tracing.

Here are instructions for how to enlarge a mosaic pattern or drawing using only a ruler.

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Mosaic Tile Studio Display Jars group photo with 8mm Morjo glass

Out of Site, Out of Mind

I have always transferred my glass tile from the plastic factory bags used for shipment and into glass jars or plastic tubs. I do that for several reasons:

Rigid containers like recycled jars and plastic yogurt containers make it easier to rinse out the glass dust and slivers formed by cutting. Torn plastic bags drip water and don’t dry easily.

Glass jars and open-top tubs also make it easier to see the true color of the tiles, which is difficult when viewed through scratched and dirty plastic.

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