Message on a Bottle

Local artist creates unique etchings on glassware and bottles with the goal of enriching what’s inside

“I’m fascinated by the history of glass, <a href=

health as well as its physical properties,“ says Tim Larkin, who etches prayers and positive images onto glass (including Miron glass bottles, inset) as a way of enriching the water inside. “I could study glass for 50 years and still not come close to knowing everything about it.” Photos by Boomer Jerritt” src=”×401.jpg” width=”602″ height=”401″ /> “I’m fascinated by the history of glass, as well as its physical properties,“ says Tim Larkin, who etches prayers and positive images onto glass (including Miron glass bottles, inset) as a way of enriching the water inside. “I could study glass for 50 years and still not come close to knowing everything about it.” Photos by Boomer Jerritt

Our bodies are composed of water more than any other substance. In fact, when we were in our mother’s womb we were 99 per cent water. Our blood is 90 per cent water and our heart is 79 per cent water. Every structure of our body and every chemical process necessary for life depends on water. So why would we not want to drink the cleanest, most beneficial water for our bodies?

Tim Larkin of First Glass Design believes that we should do all we can to quench our body’s thirst with the best water we can find. He is so passionate about what we drink that he has developed a water bottle that he believes can make the best water even better.

Inspired by the work of Dr. Masaru Emoto, Larkin creates unique pieces of functional art with water in mind. Specifically, Larkin etches prayers and other positive images onto the outside of Miron glass water bottles as a way of enriching the water inside. He believes that the positive messages and images have a vibration that is beneficial to what is stored inside the bottle. This positively charged water is then absorbed by our body—and Larkin believes that we are better for it.

Though Larkin’s ideas are cutting edge, he currently sells his beautiful and functional bottles to customers the world over—and he can barely keep up with the steady demand.

Larkin’s adventure with glass began several years ago when he met glass blower Adam Szoke on the ferry over to Quadra Island. “Meeting Adam was a life changing experience for me,” explains Larkin during an interview at the Rewind Coffee Bar in Tin Town. “That first time I saw Adam blowing glass my jaw was literally on the floor. I was completely hooked after that.”

Since then Larkin became what he calls a glass enthusiast. “I love everything about glass. I’m fascinated by it. Glass is how I express myself creatively,” he says. “In fact, before I started blowing glass I didn’t think I was creative at all. I couldn’t paint, or sculpt, or at least I hadn’t tried. But when I tried glass blowing, that creative part of me was awakened.”

Larkin was also taken by the physical nature of glass. “I’m fascinated by the history of glass, as well as its physical properties. I could study glass for 50 years and still not come close to knowing everything about it,” he adds. “Glass is unique. We’re surrounded by it, but also, if you want a piece of art to last centuries or millennia, glass is one of the mediums that will last the test of time.”

Soon after Larkin was introduced to glass art he became interested in etching glass. “I met a woman who sold her etched glass, and I was intrigued to learn how she did it,” he says. “She explained the process to me and described the tools one needed. I happened to know that a friend of mine had a sandblaster that was gathering dust in his garage. In fact, it seemed all the specialty tools I needed were at my disposal. So I decided to give glass etching a whirl.”

Initially, etching glass was a painstaking process. “I bought a set of glasses that I planned to etch for my girlfriend as a gift,” he recalls. “It ended up taking me much longer than I anticipated as I had to cut each stencil by hand.” Eventually, Larkin invested in a vinyl cutting machine, which allowed him to create stencils with much greater ease.

Since Larkin could create any design he wanted with his vinyl cutting machine, he decided to etch glass with images that were not only beautiful but also life affirming. “A simple household object like a glass pot, a window, or tea cup has the potential to be turned into a functional piece of art that can have a measurable effect on the health and well being of the person using it,” he says. “I believe that beauty has a measurable effect on the psyche.”

Specifically, Larkin chooses images of sacred geometry and ancient prayers, such as the flower of life, the prayer of gratitude, and symbols that represent the seven chakras. These images may be complicated geometric shapes, or a prayer text in another language, such as Sanskrit or Hebrew. “The designs I use are very old and have a deep resonance with ancient cultures—ancient cultures that knew things we’ve now forgotten.”

Larkin believes these positive images have a demonstrative effect on the water that is stored inside. “I believe that the positive vibrations created by my images actually create what is called structured water,” he says.

The idea of structured water was pioneered by Dr. Emoto of Japan. “Dr. Emoto’s research postulates that prayer has a visible effect on the structure of water, which means that water molecules link together to form complex geometrical shapes—shapes which are visible as crystals,” explains Larkin.

According to Dr. Emoto, human thought and intent has a direct observable effect on the structural formation of ice crystals. To support his hypothesis, Dr. Emoto took pictures of water that had been subjected to both positive and negative words and thoughts. He published a book, The Hidden Messages in Water, which contains pictures of what he found. According to Dr. Emoto, the water subjected to positive words—such as thank you—consistently formed beautiful crystals. Those subjected to hateful thoughts and words could not form crystals at all.

In his book, Dr. Emoto further explains that the structure and amount of detail of an ice crystal is also an indicator of the water quality. According to Dr. Emoto, high quality water, such as that from a pure mountain stream, forms beautiful and intricate crystals, while low quality or polluted water has difficulty forming crystals.
“I’ve been interested in the work of Dr. Emoto for a long time,” Larkin says. “Water is very mysterious, so it didn’t surprise me to learn that it had the ability to store information and intent.”

According to Larkin, the molecular structure of water and its unique physical properties give it the quality of being an incredibly adaptable carrier of information. This belief is not new, however. Homeopathic medicine, for example, is based on the ability of water to store vibrational energy.

Larkin equates drinking structured water to eating organic food. “We’re 70 to 80 per cent water, so essentially you’re more water than you. When the water you drink is pure and is charged with high vibrations, my hypothesis is that it would have a beneficial effect upon our health.”

It is believed that structured water is healthier for us because our cells can absorb and utilize structured water much more effectively than unstructured water. “Water holds a stable vibrational charge. As you drink it, it becomes part of you. Every cell in your body will resonate with the intention. People tell me they feel better when they drink water out of my bottles—more hydrated, more energized.”

Just as positive thoughts and images can have a positive effect upon our health, Larkin believes negative thoughts can cause negative health issues. “When a friend of mine passed away from cancer at the age of 45 it really hit me that cancer is not prejudiced,” he says. “This man—he ate organic and healthy food, he was into exercise. He seemed to do all the right things. But he died of cancer at a young age. It made me wonder why, which led me to questions about how much hate he may have harbored—how many negative thoughts he allowed to flow through his mind.”

Larkin now believes that everything we experience—what we choose to watch on television, who we choose to spend our time, and even our thoughts—affects our physical, mental and spiritual well-being in the end.

“We’re really three bodies,” he adds. “There is our physical self, our mental self, and our spiritual self. All of these need to be fed and healthy to give us long life and vitality. Just eating healthy food and exercising isn’t enough.”

Larkin’s water bottles are not only beautiful because of the etchings; they are a unique color as well. “I use a special glass called Miron glass—it’s such a deep purple that it’s almost black. The light colored etchings really contrast beautifully with the dark glass.”

One of Larkin's etched Miron glass bottles.  Photo by Boomer Jerritt

One of Larkin’s etched Miron glass bottles. Photo by Boomer Jerritt

Miron glass is an antioxidant glass that works essentially like a natural filter. Traditional glass colors such as clear or amber allow light from the visible spectrum to pass through, but Miron glass is something new altogether. Developed by Swiss scientist Yves Kraushaar after 14 years of research, Miron glass is scientifically proven to retard the growth of pathogenic materials. It only allows the passage of the three frequencies of light known to nurture and protect all organic matter—visible violet light, non visible UVA and far infrared light. Non visible UVA is responsible for retarding the growth of bacteria, mould and other pathogens. This keeps water fresh and vital for years.

Even raw eggs and crushed fruit stored in Miron glass stay fresh for weeks. Furthermore, violet light has the highest vibration frequency (720 – 770 billion Hertz) of all colors, and it corresponds exactly to the vibration of our central nervous system. Essentially, Miron glass is shown to not only preserve the contents held within, but it can actually make it better over time.

In business since 2010 and on Etsy since 2012, Larkin gets an order almost every day. “My bottles have had rave reviews and I’ve shipped them as far as Australia, Scandinavia, Hong Kong and Germany,” Larkin says. “I’ve had amazing success.”

Before Larkin ships his etched Miron glass bottles he adds a natural cork closure. Cork is antimicrobial, it allows the water to breathe, and unlike plastic, is a biodegradable and renewable resource. “I feel better about providing a cork closure with my water bottles. There is also something satisfying about hearing that pop when you release the cork.”

Larkin knows that sometimes it’s difficult for people to fully embrace new ideas, especially ones that are difficult to quantify. It may seem farfetched to some that prayers etched onto a water bottle can somehow change the water inside. “It’s all just a hypothesis at this point, but I’m okay with that. I’m conscious that throughout history, people with farfetched ideas have encountered a lot of resistance. But eventually, some farfetched ideas become accepted as truth.”

According to Larkin, sometimes people buy the water bottles simply because they’re beautiful. “My bottles are very unique. People are very drawn to them and they always generate good conversation.”

And he believes he’s making a small difference in the world by spreading his ideas through his functional art. “I believe you change the world by your actions, not your words,” he adds. “If we want to make a difference we need to get up and do something about it.”

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