Posts Tagged 'stained glass'



Full length Stained Glass windows

bespoke stained glass landscape

bespoke stained glass landscape

Friday I installed these two 2 metre long panels into their new home at a fabulous new build family home in the lovely village of Cheriton Bishop, Devon. The customers have recently moved into the oak frame house and it really takes the best from heritage timbers and materials and modern conveniences. Its great to get them in their final resting place, I started designing them at the end of 2013, so they have taken a while to produce!

The windows brief was simple, to transform the boring plain glass windows either side of the wooden front door into a proper feature; whilst still allowing light into the house and using a naturalistic landscape theme that followed from one panel to the next. They wanted grasses and a tree and a few cows (as he was a dairy farmer). The really tricky part of this brief was the width of the panel compared to the height almost 2 metres by 26 cm and I decided that a more Japanese approach to landscape was needed and the panels journey from the North Devon Coast at the top of the windows, through the fields and hills to a tree by a river. For strength the panel is split into 3 reinforced sections and I am really pleased with the way the landscape flows across from one side to the other (even though there is a door in between).

I have used kiln fired glass enamels and acid etching to paint all the details and the glass used is a mixture of mouth blown antique glass and Spectrum art glass.

 

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The Hare and The Moon

The Hare and The Moon

Leaded round panel with a hare and moon painted in kiln fired glass paints and lustre. Inspired by the Indian folk tale of the same name

Red Bamboo and Dragon flies

Bamboo and Dragon fly, bespoke stained glass window

Bamboo and Dragon fly, bespoke stained glass window

This panel was installed last week, it fills a window between the kitchen and dining room in a 1930’s house in Exeter. The opening between the front and back of the house allows more light into the kitchen area as well as a wonderful focal point for both rooms.

Every commission comes with a brief and I managed to create a design that had bright colours and bamboo and water with dragonflies.

There is a pleasing sense of movement in the bamboo due to using Spectrum Water Glass and I have painted the shading and detail onto the bamboo stems.

I have used a mixture of antique mouth blown glass and modern Spectrum Glass. I have used traditional glass paints and luster which Dragon Fly and Bamboo Detailhave been fired in the kiln. This is a big panel and to give it extra strength I have used some internal reinforcing and a rigid metal frame.

To find out what the differences between different types of glass are click here 

See how mouth blown stained glass is made at Lambert’s UK glass factory by clicking here

The big reveal!

looking up at Mountain Ash in situThis year for Devon Open Studios I decided to have a change of scene and participate in a couple of sculpture trails. As a result, Yarner Wood has been the main focus of my work for a while now, its a English Nature reserve outside Bovey Tracey on the edge of Dartmoor and is being restored to a Western Oak Wood. The theme of the trail is man’s relationship with the environment and I have taken the history of the wood as inspiration for my pieces which combine cross sections of tree trunk from Yarner Wood (48ish year old Douglas Fir) with fused and mosaic glass. Speaking to the staff at the woods gave me the idea of the wood being at the heart of all the human activity in the woods and in turn human activity having shaped the woods use and appearance. This is turn led The bomb that saved the wood, detailto the idea of taking the core, or heart out of the discs of wood and fill them with glass pieces; the juxtaposition of the natural wood and the very modern man made glass is very appealing to me. There are 10 artists exhibiting on this fabulous trail from conceptual to sound artists and everything in between and I am very excited to be part of such an interesting project.

I picked the tree trunk up in 3 and 6 inch cross sections, with quite a lot of wild life attached and I must confess it was a bit daunting….but then my ever useful Dad arrived and looking up at Mountain Ash 2cut all the central cores out of the slabs of wood, many thanks to him, I would never get any sculptures made without his patience! Each of the sculptures is cast to the size of the individual holes and are made from recycled waste glass. This series of sculptures is my largest series of sculptures to date and I am very pleased with the results.

green man 2The first piece on the trail is my take on the age old Green Man ‘Welcome to the Woods’, it is right at the start of the trail and is there to welcome people to the woods, reflecting man’s symbiotic relationship with nature and the timeless cycle of life.  The first firing of this piece cast all the scraps of clear, green and yellow glass into a disc shape, then I painted the design on and fired it again.

Becoming Autumn is the second piece on the trail. Again I used recycled waste glass (this time Spectrum 96 series), and depicted oak leaves changing Becoming Autumn in situcolour as the season changes. The trail starts at the beginning of autumn and it seemed like a great reflection of human enjoyment of nature for leisure, a very modern use of the natural environment!

My third piece on the trail is also inspired by the modern use of woodland for peace and reflection. ‘ Looking up at Mountain Ash’ takes inspiration from the wonderful Rowan trees in the wood and the simple pleasure of looking up at the shapes and light of the woodland. As with the previous piece this one is fused with small scraps of Spectrum 96 glass. While I was installing this piece I had a fabulous interaction with a young male deer (whose antlers were still small and fuzzy) who came bounding through the wood, regarded me and then turned and bounded on through the undergrowth.

copper blue in situThe wood has not always been a tranquil retreat from the pressures of modern life and 150 years ago a very active copper mine was on the site, lots of charcoal burning and the lord of the manor owned the area and exercised his horses on the wood. The next piece ‘Copper Blue’ riffs on this history, the blue glass is copper bearing and the cast disc has copper sheet inclusions and is hung between two fence posts, a prolific sign of how humans have shaped the wood!

In World War II the wood was earmarked to be cut down to assist with timber for the war effort, however, when a German bomber discharged his last bombs after a raid on Plymouth (in order to get home faster) the wood was hit and many of the trees then grew twisted and damaged, no good for timber manufacturing. This has inspired the next piece ‘The Bomb that Saved the Wood’.  Here 2 pieces hang one above the other. The top one has 2 discs of glass bang! detailwithin it to give a sense of depth and fire and the one below has a fun Pop Art feel with the word BANG painted across it.

The trail now turns a corner and the piece of the woodland really encompasses you, this is where I have placed my last hollowed wood piece, ‘Tranquil’. Tranquil cast acorns detailI have used various pieces of blue and sea green scrap glass to create the disc and then cast a separate acorns and oak leaves from crushed cast glass which have then be attached to the disc.

I continued with cast glass objects for the next piece, ‘Which came first?’. Here I have mosaic waste white and cream scraps of glass to the shape of the central core of the wood, which is happily egg shaped and then attached my cast glass bird. I am very pleased with both my cast pieces and this is a skill I am very much still learning this complicated area of glass art! which came first

cogs in situMy final serious sculpture on the trail is ‘Cogs’ made to express how we are all part of the great machine of life I have taken 3 of the cores my Dad removed from the wood and created different coloured bands which match up with the tree rings below.

All this serious art work is all well and good, but we all need a bit of fun and to add this to my trail I have made a child side bird house from recycled marine ply, which I got from the fabulous Bristol Wood Recycling Project. Permanent markers will be available for visitors to decorate the bird house as the pass it and lots of colourful material will be inside for children to make their own birds nest.

The trail opens on Saturday 7th September and is open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday until the 22nd September, refreshments are available in the woodland centre and the trail is free and only 2.5 km, so a child friendly distance! click on the link for more details http://www.artecology.co.uk/page2.php

Our preview is Saturday 7th September and all the artists will be on hand to talk about their work and show people round the trail.

 

 

From Dull Downstairs Toilet to Enchanted Forest

arch window with red tree - Copy

I have just fitted this panel into a large downstairs toilet window, replacing the ugly textured glass that had been there since the 1970’s.  The house is a listed lodge in Higher Cemetery near my home in Exeter and was once the grounds keepers cottage; now it’s a family home. It was built in the Gothic revival style so popular at the time by architect Edward Ashworth and is great, quirky old building.

The panel needed to obscure the person sitting in the loo, have natural details and a large central tree; the clients love green and the panel has a large green border of streaky green glass which gives the small room a green hue, like you are in a forest. I have lino cut printed ivy leaves onto the bottom corners of the panel and the central landscape is packed with painted detail of grasses, leaves, animals and birds. It was quite a challenging window as it is a very big window in an extremely small room, so you see it from very close up, which is quite unusual for such a large, grand opening!

Past Present Future Project

Really pleased to formally announce I have been chosen as one of the artists commissioned to make a piece of art as part of  the Exeter Community Centre’s  Past Present Future Project 

I am very excited to be involved and will be making a window for the Centre in response to the memories and discussions of local people over 60 who live locally, or have a connection to the St David’s area of Exeter.

blind children from the turn of the century The Exeter Community Centre had a prestigious history as the West Of England Blind School, from the mid 19th Century to 1965 (when it moved to a new site) and blind people from all over the country were educated in a range of practical and traditional academic subjects in the building. The site now has a  new lease of life as a community centre, with local charities offices, local groups and classes and an excellent cafe.  To celebrate the past and future of the building I intend to make a multi-sensory piece with lots of textures for people with little or no sight to enjoy as well as sighted people and I hope to incorporate some braille as well as interesting textures. The window will sit between the cafe and the main foyer in a prominent position.

I have been greatly helped by the West of England School Association with archive material (including some excellent photographs of past students) and hopefully I will be running my workshop with past alumni of the school. This is really exciting to me as I cant wait to hear their memories of the school and what they have gone on to do since those days.  Being a visual artist I am obviously very dependent on my sight and its going to be a fabulous challenge to make

prestigious past student of the school

prestigious past student of the school

something which will also appeal to the other senses and to get the opinions of people without sight. historic blind school

St Davids is an ancient part of Exeter, with a rich and very varied history; capturing the memories of people who have a  life-long connection with this central Exeter district will be really fascinating.

What we need is LOTS of memories of the area, so if you know a person who is over 60 and wants to be part of the project then please encourage them to get involved!

 

ppf grab

Preparing for Exeter Open Studios 2013

close up of fused and painted fish

Its only a couple of weeks until Exeter Open Studios 2013 and my studio is a slightly frantic hive of activity! The big clear out happened this week, I have no idea how it gets so full of rubbish and where the piles of random stuff comes from, but its a good chance to get really ship shape and its much nicer going to work in a clean and tidy space!


paper clay cast dragonflies

I am still finishing off the pieces for the accompanying Gloss Gallery Exhibition of works and I haven’t even got to the framers yet! BUT I have done some successful castings in paper clay moulds and I am really pleased with the resulting dragonflies (which I will glue on to the finished leaded panel) and my latest lino cuts are finally looking how I want them too.

lino cut butterflies and leaves in progressIt looks like it is going to be an excellent Open Studios event with lots of local artists opening their doors to the local public, so if you are in the Exeter area please come and say hi and see if I ever finished any of these works in progress! If you would like to download a map just click here  and if you would like to see who all the other artists are please click here 


I am a stained glass artist working in Exeter and a busy mum of 2; trying to carve a path through the tide of washing and children's toys that stands between me and making beautiful things.

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Bottle Top Rock Pools

small recycled stained glass heart

Large recycled stained glass hearts

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Moroccan Panel

Brays Torr from the River lydd

art deco fish

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