St Michael the Archangel Church, Stained Glass Restoration Project

St Michael’s church is an iconic landmark on Teignmouth sea front (there has been a church on the site for over 1000 years) and the salt air has led the stone work around the stained glass to deteriorate quickly. So the church community raised money and were helped by the Heritage Lottery Fund to get the stonework and stained glass repaired. 

Part of their grant was for community engagement and I am working with some of the town’s primary school students. They are learning about how to make stained glass windows and why churches have/had stained glass. They are then being invited to design a stained glass window conveying something important to them, or a message for the world. These designs will be exhibited in the church and then our will be chosen to be made into banners for the church to display and celebrate the restoration. The banners will be made by local craft group West Teignmouth Craft Club with help from the congregation. 

Huge thanks to Mrs Gordon’s class at Our Lady of St Patrick RC School who were the first school to take part and they have made some wonderful designs. The children were very thoughtful and their designs cover many topics, with everything from WW2 to celebrate dead relatives to looking after our mental health.   I don’t know how we are going to choose 4 designs! 

The next workshops are at  Teignmouth Community School, Mill Lane, cant wait to see what they create. 

Internal window with the wow factor: floral stained glass window

This large stained glass window has left for its new home today; it is an internal window between two rooms and has added a great feature to their renovation. The iridescent clear glass allows lots of light to flood into the other room and allowed me to use strong rich red, green and blue glass without compromising the light.  Continue reading “Internal window with the wow factor: floral stained glass window”

Fragile Knowledge, Exeter Library Rare Book Commission for Art Week Exeter

I have been working away on this cabinet of curiosity for Exeter Library, as part of  Art Week Exeter. Exeter Library has a a fantastic collection of early and rare books and they have a new scheme to get people to adopt a book from the collection to pay for the restoration of these ancient books.  Continue reading “Fragile Knowledge, Exeter Library Rare Book Commission for Art Week Exeter”

New Work for Edge Sculpture Trail

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Went to install my new panel in the woods at the P1010568annual sculpture trail at High Heathercombe Centre

EDGE is an outdoor sculpture trail on Dartmoor and is set in a woodland with a stream running through. The theme this year is Renewal.

I haven’t tried to hang a stained glass window in the woods before and I really like how it looks suspended in the trees. Stained glass is usually in such solid stone and brick built openings and its quite different looking at it just suspended in the air. face portrait woodland ed

The panel mixes fused glass and traditional stained glass painting and leading. Its in a very sturdyWoodland Education work shopy frame, so lets hope it survives the Dartmoor Weather! Heavy rain and thunderstorms are forecast this week, so fingers crossed.

I don’t usually add textwoodland ed detail to my own work, but I have written a little bit of text that goes around the edge. No idea where this new found poetic streak has come from!

The panel is called Woodland Education and the words say

Gazing up, at the lacework sky of leaves,

‘Is that all?’, she sighed.

‘Oh no’, hushed the trees in wolfish reply.

‘You Can Always Try Again’.

 

 

 

Tropical fish stained glass windows

tropical fish stained glassI have just installed these 2 windows into a newly renovated home in Exeter. The building itself is an old vicarage, which is several hundred years old and has been added to over the years, most significantly in the 1960s and again by the new ownersP1010511. They have added a new atrium and extension, but this has left the bathroom on the ground and first floors with windows over looking the staircase, so one of the main design factors was obscuring the bathrooms for privacy.

P1010513The clients wanted lots of colour, lots of fish and lots of blue. The windows are one above another and visible both from the staircase and the bathrooms. The bottoP1010496m panel has coral and the fronds
of seaweed reach up and match up to those of the first floor window.

Each ofP1010494 the fish in the design has been formed in my kiln by melting crushed and small strips of glass. Once the glass has melted together into fish shapes I have
painted the details on and re-fired in the kiln to fix the P1010482paint in place. Once I made all the fish I incorporated them into a traditional, leaded stained glass windows, mixing modern techniques with traditional ones, which echoes the mixture of old and new architecture in the house.

red fish kiln formedThese have been a labour of love  and very time consuming; incorporating fused glass is technically more tricky than a standard leaded panel. But they have been well worth the effort, the clients are delighted with them and I think they have turned out really well.  I especially like the way they reflect off the white bathroom tiles and bounce coloured fish reflections around the rooms.

Exmouth Window

Exmouth landscape stained glassThis is a new piece, commissioned for a 1920’s front door for a period house inP1000545 Exmouth.

My client wantedacid etched shell the local landscape and beach huts as a theme and I enhanced this seaside theme more by acid etching and etching shells into some of the glass border.

Acid etching was the first surface technique I learned and it remains one of my favourite effects. The way that the texture – and therefore light transmission of the glass is altered is both subtle and effective and is very useful for adding close up detail without making the overall design too ‘busy’.  To add a contemporary twist I have fired the photograph of Exmouth Beach huts onto glass in my kiln and this modern process gives a contrast to the traditional leading and etching.
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