Annette Gardener

Annette GardenerA day out in her sea kayak is always a wonderful experience and a source of inspiration for Annette, exploring the beautiful Pembrokeshire coastline and its secret caves, spectacular rock formations and magical islands. The depth and colour of the sea, and the often dramatic sky are constantly changing. In the company of inquisitive seals and an abundance of seabirds she becomes part of their world. On dry land, there are walks in the hills and cosy evenings with her cat and dog by the fire.

In Annette’s studio, it all becomes very technical. Her workbench is scattered with tubes containing finely ground glass powder which, once fired on copper sheet, will transform to a delicate translucent or a dramatic and bold surface of glass.

For cloisonné work, the arrangement of sterling silver wire outlines the design. Fine gold and silver leaf may add sparkle to a seascape or life to a fire. Enamel is finely ground glass powder fired onto a metal base at around 800° Celsius; the enamel fuses to the metal base, and when cooled reveals a smooth surface of glass. After up to six firings, etching and polishing, the piece reveals its final magic. For Annette’s cloisonné work she uses mostly transparent enamels fired over a white basecoat.