September glasspainting workshop in Vermont


I’ll be teaching a 5-Day Stained Glass Painting Workshop Sept 14-18th at my studio in southern Vermont. We’re 3hrs drive from Boston, 4hrs from New York City and 10 mins from the border with western Massachusetts. One place is definitely still available.

Participants will learn how to mix, thin, and apply kiln-fired lead-free paints with an inexpensive, non-toxic food additive, plus techniques that enable lively, expressive trace-lines, printed effects using lace, plastic and rubber tools, and how to create faux textures such as stone, wood, fur and fabric. We start with group exercises that explore innovative methods of application, and then move swiftly on to individual projects. Students who wish may work on self-portraits.

My glasspainting techniques make it easy to achieve beautiful results, even for beginners. These intensive workshop are also really helpful for experienced glasspainters who want to develop greater ease and fluency.

Class size is small (max. 6) with lots of individual attention. Tuition $860, includes lunch each day. More about hours, lodgings, fees and scholarships here. Watch videos of real-time glasspainting demonstrations, on vimeo, read blog posts about my workshops at Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts, Williams College and Vermont or photos of past student work on my website. Scroll through the teaching folder via little grey arrows at bottom of screen.

Happy glasspainting to all my stained glass friends, but especially, to past students.

Portland Oregon: Monday’s talk at St Mary’s Cathedral on stained glass, 3pm

I am so happy to be in Portland, Oregon staying with my friend, Jocelyn Bates O’Brien, one of the architects I worked with on the remodeling of St Mary’s Cathedral 20 years ago. Jocelyn was part of the committee that selected me to design and paint over 1,000 sq ft of figurative stained glass and an etched glass screen. We were still living in London at the time, so the project was life-changing.

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I’ll be bringing my students from next week’s workshop in Newburg, Oregon, and answering questions about design and glasspainting techniques.

If you live nearby, you’re welcome to come and join us at St Mary’s Cathedral at 3pm this coming Monday, June 15th. The address is 1716 NW Davis St, Portland, OR 97209

Or, if you’re far away, you can visit the cathedral virtually here via an online self-guided tour, or scroll through a folder of images of the stained glass at St Mary’s on my site.

The Mohawk prisms


I have a lovely project underway at the moment: new 1930’s style signage for the Mohawk Bar in North Adams, Massachusetts, to tie in with their original windows made from ribbed glass tiles. Designed to bring more daylight into the interior of stores and factories, these pressed/cast tiles were widely produced and very fashionable in the days before electric lighting.

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I adapted the classic typeface Broadway, adding ‘etched’ lines (decorative parallels on the wide strokes) to provide positions for leadlines that wouldn’t interfere with reading the text.

Thanks to colleagues David Guarducci in Great Barrington, and to Scott, Fred and Sue Shea at Stained Glass Resources (sometimes it takes a village!) I managed to get ahold of some French Verierre de Saint Gobain ruby-on-white flashed glass. The ruby surface of this two-coloured sheet glass can be etched away to expose a clear or amber underlayer.

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Sandblasting was done by my good friend and neighbor, sculptor Bill LeQuier, who also carves ocean waves in glass.

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I used black masking tape on top of contact paper to mask out the areas to be sandblasted. Next, each pane is painted and fired. My proprietary glasspainting recipe is great for obtaining solid blacks first time over the ruby background.

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Careful measurement and old-fashioned geometry.

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The existing windows are simple grids of 4″ squares. Washed and polished, they sparkle like new.

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Using a portable band saw to cut the zinc profiles.

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I’m seriously enjoying working with a new material… cutting miters, filing to precise dimensions. The zinc behaves quite differently to lead. The first panel is now assembled, ready to be soldered, puttied, patinated and polished.

More about the Mohawk project and project developers Moresi & Associates

You are invited…

…to celebrate the newly installed Archie Hanna window at Trinity Episcopal Church in Branford, Connecticut on Saturday Nov 30th. I’ll be at the church from 3pm – 4.30 to meet with parishioners, friends, and anyone else who would like to join us for hot chocolate and home- made cookies.

This reception is part of Trinity’s Open House and everyone is welcome to attend. November 30th is Branford’s annual Holiday Fair, Parade and Tree Lighting. When darkness falls the new stained glass window will also be illuminated.
Branford is located in South Central Connecticut, about 10 minutes from New Haven and an hour from Hartford. It takes around an hour and forty minutes to drive from NY city and is accessible via the Shoreline East Rail Service and other public transportation options to Branford CT

Links to transportation info and photos of the stained glass in progress can be found here

Debora Coombs
Inside The Stained Glass Studio BLOG