The stained glass easel; why?

In the process of making stained glass there are two stages where the glass is easeled up against the daylight. First, when selecting glass, then later, when glasspainting. Easeling glass is time-consuming and thus expensive, so why do this?

Here’s my current work for All Saints Chapel at Carroll College in Helena Montana. Note how the opalescent glasses change at night/dusk. This is an effect that can only be estimated, whether on light table or easel, because my north-facing easel does not precisely mimic the light in Montana. The easel does, however, take out a lot of the guesswork.

 

 

Check a few older posts if you want to find out more about how and why glass is fixed to the easel, and watch the embedded video links. Stage one, selecting glass for colour, transparency/opacity and texture the English way, by fixing it to the clear glass easel plate with Plasticene; about choosing colour for a landscape window with figures; using beeswax and rosin (which fires off later in the kiln) in the process of  waxing up (fixing painted, fired  glass onto the easel for further layers of glasspaint); and details of a specific wet-matte technique that may be achieved with my https://coombscriddle.wordpress.com/2015/06/22/spreading-the-word-worldwide/proprietory propylene glycol mixture.

Glasspainting at the easel (videos)

IMG_2609As promised,  here’s a little insight into my wet matting technique. Propylene glycol allows the glasspaint to remain wet (“open”) for much longer than a traditional mix, so I can create graduated shadows while the paint is still wet. I can also leave some areas of the glass completely clear to maintain the sparkle. Watch me apply and manipulate a wet matter in real time in this two minute video  Glass Painting at the Easel Part 1 and brush back the dry matte to remove highlights in Glasspainting at the Easel Part 2 (2.5 mins).

I am painting glass that has been previously painted, fired and fixed onto clear glass easel plates with a mixture of beeswax and rosin (how this is done). Working at the easel with my painted glass up against natural light (not on a light table) allows me to manipulate the transparency/opacity of each piece, add final shadows, and see the window as a whole.

Easel painting prep

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Today I fixed all the little pieces of painted glass back onto clear glass easel plates with a mixture of beeswax and rosin ready for final glasspainting up against the daylight. This is where I add any final shading and adjust transparency where needed.

We made two very quick videos of the process for all those stained glass technique junkies….
waxing up a panel (68 seconds) and
putting the glass back onto the easel (22 seconds)

Here’s another panel, partly laid out on a glass easel plate prior to waxing up.

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I have to end with a more interesting photo because I never know whether Facebook will choose my first or my last photo to post to my Page. If there’s anyone out there who can tell me how to control this please do!

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