Swan Lake in Glass

I recently finished this commission for a lovely couple who are big theatre fans and Michael Bourne’s Swan Lake is their favourite, so I have
The dancer is painted with kiln fired enamels and the feathers and moon are painted with lustre. I have created the panel using traditional leading techniques and will hang in a sunny window.

Westward Ho! Surfer Stained Glass Window

I have just finished this dinky panel for a back door in Yeovil. The customer has recently renovated the house and this is the finishing touch to his new kitchen.
The customer came up with a design idea and I adapted it to work as a leaded window. I made the glass for the wave in my kiln from crushed glass which is called frit and the surfer is has been painted with enamels and popped in the kiln too.

Devon Open Studios 2020

Despite CV19 Devon Open Studios is going ahead and I am returning to take up residence with my lovely friends at Words and Pictures Gallery, Teignmouth.
I have had the chance to make some new work, from small gift items to some more personal pieces reflecting the epic year that is 2020!
Open Studios runs from 12th -27th September and I will be working on architectural glass commissions over this period, so please pop in and say hi if you are in the area.

Goldfinches in glass

I delivered this panel today. This was commissioned to hide the buildings behind the garden. The home is part of an old converted school in North Devon. The customer watches the birds from the kitchen windows, so we continued that theme for her design.

Although this is a traditional leaded panel I have made the birds by fusing glass in the kiln and then I painted on their wings and put in the kiln a second time. The thistles and foliage have been painted onto the glass using lustre and come to life after dark when the light comes from the inside instead of from behind.

The customer is arranging for the panel to be fixed place , at a height to best obscure the buildings beyond the garden.

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Westward Ho! Surfing Stained Glass Panel

This little panel is off to its home – a newly made front door. The surfers are the customers children and this is a favourite holiday spot of theirs.
The panel is made using traditional leading techniques and kiln fired glass enamels.

stained glass surfers on the beach
surfers, stained glass

A seaside scene for a window in the turn of the stairs

Based on the Cornwall’s Sennen Cove, this seaside scene combines traditional leading and kiln fired glass paint with kiln formed glass pieces. I made the glass for the beach specially and it has flecks of gold running through the glass. This panel was made to add privacy and hide the side wall of the house next door. It adds a really great feature for the long upstairs hallway.

Two more windows for a returning customer

Stained glass windows are a bit like tattoos, once you get one you want more! I have just installed these two panels for a customer who I made two big panels for a couple of years ago. This happens surprisingly often, its great for me as I already know the customers and repeat customers are the best advert for my business. 

These panels are fixed in front of the UPVC panels, I use this method regularly as most houses now have double glazing. 
It was a wet and very dark morning, so the panels are brightening up a grey day, I will re photograph with the sunlight streaming through in the summer.

St Michael’s Restoration Project Part II – Working with TCS Mill Lane

My last post documented the start of my Heritage Lottery Fund Project with St Michael the Archangel Church, Teignmouth. 
Please click here to see the last post explaining the restoration 

For the second part of my project, I took my stained glass window templates to Teignmouth Community School, Mill Lane and worked with Miss Radford and Miss Goodwin’s year 4/5 classes over two afternoons. 

After a brief history and explanation of stained glass – I got the children working on their task, to design a stained glass window with a message to the world about something they cared about. As stained glass windows were the picture books of their time, conveying messages, to support the bible stories of the Vicar sermons. The pupils of Mill Lane were ALL about saving the planet, the windows reflect their frustrations and fears about plastic pollution and endangered animals. Some were about commemorating war and some were to do with commemorating dead relatives and promoting charities like cancer care charities. 

Thank you so much to the pupils and staff at Mill Lane for their hard work and enthusiasm. I hope you agree their pictures are delightful.  Here is a selection of them. 

I will begin hanging them all at St Michaels church in the next week and then all the children and their families can come and see their art exhibition. Several of the designs will be turned into larger banners for the church to display into the future. 

 

 

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. 

World War One Memorial’s Unveiled

 

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I have been working on three public commission War Memorials  over several years and this week saw all 3 of them launch; ahead of the Remembrance events on Sunday 11th November. I have found these commissions fascinating and it has been a poignant experience and I am honoured to be part of the centenary 

 In 2014, I was commissioned by Devon Remembers to work with Teignmouth Community School year 7’s to create a war memorial inspired by the experiences of the people on the Teignmouth Home Front (read about it here). I completed the piece a year ago, but it was moved from its usual home in the school reception, to Exeter Cathedral for the 100 year Centenary. 

 

Wealdstone Football Club approached me in 2015 and I worked with them to create a beautiful panel to commemorate

all of the members of the football team lost in combat over both world wars.

Aqueous Sun Photography

This was a fabulous piece to make as I got to combine the ‘old crafts’ of painting and leading with the modern fusing and photographic firing techniques. Roge Slater from the club made the frame and the work is back lit and on display at the Club. 

My final War Memorial was much closer to home. My colleague Sam Lock and I were approached by the Teignmouth Remembrance Committee  to create a fitting art installation for the centenary of W1. We decided on a make do and mend theme and invited people from Teignmouth and all over the country to join us in making fabric or woollen poppies. The result was 30 metres of net covered in handmade poppies. When we had secured all the hundreds of poppies to the net I went up in the cherry picker and secured them to the top of the lighthouse. Despite very heavy weather the memorial remains in place for Remembrance week and hopefully beyond. Thank you to all the hundreds of people who made poppies for us, from primary school children to octogenarians. This has been a wonderful project and we are so grateful to the town for being so enthusiastic about the project.

Mixing history and art is when I am generally happiest and I have had such a great experience with the 180 students at TCS, the research team at Wealdstone and with my fellow towns people in our little seaside town. I just wish that humans could move beyond remembering the horrors of war to learning from these lessons of history.