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Sunday, June 3, 2012
Intro to Pulled and Blown Sugar with Mark Seaman
On Thursday and Friday this past week, I was fortunate to take an introductory pulled and blown sugar class with Mark Seaman at the International Sugar Art Collection in Studio B.
Mark was a great teacher and many different techniques were covered. I learned a ton!
The rose and green leaves were made by pulling sugar. I was NOT prepared for how HOTTTTTT the sugar would be. I had on multiple pairs of latex gloves and at times still felt like I was being scalded. I had to throw down my sugar sometimes because the heat would get to be so much. So I think I need to find more heat resistant gloves or be prepared for numbness of the hands if I decide to practice my sugar pulling skills.
We also tried blowing sugar into spheres and peach shapes. I finally got one sphere I was okay with, but again, the sugar was very hot when malleable and then cooled off quickly and became difficult to manipulate.
It was difficult to adhere the sugar to the copper tube that delivered the air from the pump. But at least I got one sphere I was reasonably happy with.
We learned some other skills involving pouring and casting (read: no need to scald your hands!)
You can see a poured sugar plate under my rose sculpture and a more mosaic-like poured sugar tile.
So there's lots you can do even without the burning sensation!! :)
Hot sugar is definitely very different from gum paste-- it snaps and shatters easily and burns your hands when soft. But you can create so many neat effects!
I definitely had a great time in class. But boy will these skills take some practice! Will have to decide if I'm willing to invest in the heat lamp and other necessary accessories if I'm going to continue trying to pull and blow sugar. But even just with casting you can do some pretty awesome stuff! I feel inspired.