About Me

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I am an artist working in Water Color, Oils, Glass and wood in North Central Indiana. I enjoy Plein Aire work the most but often find myself in the studio during the winter when the weather is less than desirable for working on location. I have always been an artist, memories of drawing are some of my oldest. My early influence came from looking at old magazine covers done by Norman Rockwell. Later I discovered the photography of Edward Curtis as he had struggled to capture the American Indians of the Southwest before that culture completely disappeared. then I found Andrew Wyeth and knew what I wanted to paint. The Egg Tempera and Water Color Paintings of Andrew Wyeth were simply wonderful and I was forever committed to painting the rural landscape and those that live there. It was then I realized I would never again see the land as I had before I painted it. Soon after it was Winslow Homer and his Water Colors that kept feeding my interest in this medium and a traditional approach to my art. While I left the life as a professional artist for a time I find my return to it at this point in my life refreshing. Life is a journey and I am turning towards home. Mike Yazel

Wednesday, March 2, 2011


   Well after several days of working in the shop I finally got my new annealer ready to test run. I built this out of some parts from a kiln I bought on ebay and new insulation to make it as energy efficient as possible.  It needed to be large enough to handle a days work from the furnace which I hope it is! The interior is about 23 inch cube so with a shelf it will hold quite a but of work. The control is form the kiln and seems to work real well based on the the little test run I did today. Here are some pictures of it during construction.

This is the beginning, the frame is angle iron I welded up to keep it nice and strong. The bottom is from the kiln I disassembled and sits on a layer of the 1900 degree insulation board that is on the sides. 

Here I have the salvaged brick from the kiln in place and the elements in the grooves with a spare still laying inside by the drill. You can see the layer of Frax which is a ceramic blanket that is between the brick and insulation board. 

Here we are getting close to having the main structure together. I used the top of the kiln as my ceiling and put more insulation over it. The brick and the top and bottom form the old kiln will add a lot of thermal mass to the chamber which will make it cool down nice and slow which is good for the glass. 

Here the shop cat is hanging out inside of it! there is a small heater on  the wall opposite the opening and he likes the warm spot. I have the frame in the opening now and about finished. 

Here is the wiring in the control and out to the elements and thermal couple. 

Another view of the control.

Here is the finished machine! A little heavier than I would have like but I will get it where it goes and that should be it. Onto the Glory Hole next and I am done building the glass shop! 


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