Monday, November 10, 2014

Never Adjust Before You Flux

Two weeks ago I promised a detailed look at how Jeannette cut out the sky in her first Shrimp Boat Window and this week I'm going to deliver on that promise.  Below is the finished window which I'm re-posting so you can see how the sky's pattern is maintained to give the illusion that the boat and its rigging is sitting in front of the sky.  To create this effect, Jeannette started with one piece of sky blue glass that she set her cut and ground boat and clouds on top of.  She then traced around them with her fine point marker.  After adding in the rigging lines she then carefully picked each cut until she had the sky disassemble.  When everything was wrapped and soldered the sky flowed seamlessly behind the boat.  Jeannette had to jump around a bit while cutting but the end result is worth it.

So here's how it was done.  The only difficult cut in the entire window was the first one which resides on the bottom right.  It involved a sharp right angle and you can see that a cloud was placed there to help cover what would have been a lead line that had nothing to do with the boat.  Cloud placement in this window wasn't random-- it was well thought out to enable us to cut the sky without having any extra lead lines which would destroy the effect of the rigging lines.  Watch the image below and you'll see in what order each cut was made and how easy it is to do. Well, after that first cut was completed.

So with that out of the way, let's get on to our new finished windows this week.  Brenda came in and the first thing we noticed was that she had changed her ribbon border from a flat, somewhat boring cream colored glass to this beautiful demure yellow glass that matched the accent pieces in the Iris.  Changing those pieces meant that Brenda had to re-cut and re-grind sixteen pieces of glass but the end effect was well worth it.  Brenda also added more leaves to this design which I think work really well.  All in all, I have to say that Brenda pretty much nailed it with this window.

Jane's Geometric window got finished so quickly I barely recall seeing it get started last week!  One of Jane's trademark design features is her use of color. She likes to find a piece of glass with two colors in it and then use the two colors separately throughout the window as well.  You can see how she uses this talent by noticing the color of her curved inner border which is a combination of champagne and blue colors.  For her background Jane used a straight up champagne, and for her final border she used blue glass which both tie in perfectly with the inner border.  Perfection! 

Ann's first of three Fleur De Initial Windows is completed and headed home.  That just leaves two more to go and one of them just needs to be washed and colored.  We'll certainly see Ann's final two windows in our next update.

Linda F completed her tastefully elegant Angel Window this week and I think I've summed it up nicely already.  I see a huge difference in Linda's soldering abilities and I have to say that she seems to have gotten it.  There was little for me to do on this window in terms of touch ups so all I ended up doing was adding some hooks to hang it by. 

And this is Carol's first Lawn Ornament and she had so much fun making it that she's started working on a second one (but of a different variety.)  The angled wings are what make this Butterfly so appealing  and Carol was amazed at how easy it was to achieve that effect.  And that's not all-- just wait until you see how far she's along on her next lawn ornament project.

Linda L wrapped up work on the remainder of her eight Heart Mirrors and she's done a wonderful job on them all.  She's got a lot of mirror work under her belt and now knows exactly how to wash mirror with a minimal amount of water while still doing a thorough job.  Practice makes perfect and these last four hearts prove it.

Terry's Chitamacha Window is looking great even if Terry isn't thrilled about working with all of those tiny pieces.  She's currently working on the four feathers that hang from the bottom and then all that will be left are the double borders.  I think that when this is completed Terry will be quite proud of herself (which she should be!)


Susan has all of the glass cut for her 'M' Window and I was pleased to see her decided to use two solid pieces of background glass without feeling the need to run a lead line through the center.  Yes, you can see a line in the picture but that's on the pattern and not cut into the glass itself.  Now that her border is cut and ground I'd say that it's safe to assume that Susan will be soldering this when she comes back in.

Betty has completed all of the glass cutting on her Round Magnolia Window.  Luck was with us because I had formed a round frame out of zinc channel about a year ago that turned out to be too small for the window I made it for.  I hung that frame on the wall figuring that one day I'd find a window it would fit and this past Wednesday was that day (or should I say night?)  It was a perfect fit.   I love the yellow border and think that when this is lit up Betty will be very impressed with her project.


And here's a look at the newest Lawn Ornament that Carol has started.  This Bee is all ready to be soldered and just wait until you see how it's soldered together.  The wings will be curved AND the body itself will curve as well.  It doesn't sound like much but trust me, when you see this completed next week you'll want one yourself!  For some reason the picture of this makes it look somewhat small but it's actually 12 inches wide.   Next I need to draw up a 3D rose pattern for all of our Lawn Ornament makers.

Becky S is working on a number of picture frames but it appears that I forgot to take a picture of the three that were sitting on the other table.   This has been a learning experience for Becky in seeing how the frames are actually ssembled.   Once you do one you get the idea pretty quickly but until you see how everything relates to other sections of the frame it can be confusing.  But these look wonderful already and Becky is making fast work of this project.

Cindy is working on two of these Corner Pieces at once and grinding her pieces as she goes along.  She's always said that small pieces don't concern her and this proves that they certainly don't.  What impressed me were the 4 small round, red circles that accent the center clear section of this piece.  Why?  Because Cindy has 8 perfect circles that measure well under a half inch in diameter.  That is no small feat (no pun intended).

Jeanne has the front side of her Stylized Cross window all soldered and what a job she's done on it.  Nice smooth lead lines are a hallmark of good stained glass and this window is a perfect example of clean lines.  She's in the process of soldering the back side now and when she comes back in she plans on giving it one more touch up before she colors this and calls it complete.

Our students soldering this week has really impressed me and I have to say the job that Shelley is doing on her Mermaid Window is astoundingly professional.   Shelley has come so far since the day she first walked in and doubted that she'd ever get the hang of this.  But she did and this window surely proves that. She'll be (Shelby) soldering the back side of this when she comes back in.


Rowena's Tiger Eye/LSU Window is all ready for its borders and then a coating of lead.  The eyes aren't completed in the picture below but trust me when I tell you that as I type this the eyes are 100% finished.  I just got a bit carried away and took the picture a little too soon.  This looks great and Rowena's attention to detail has really paid off.  That tiger is practically lifelike!

Speaking of attention to detail, next we're going to take a look at Paula's Fleur De Louisiana Window.  It's another flawless project which is something that Paula excels at.  She's certainly not afraid to re-cut any piece of glass that she doesn't think it looks right no matter how much work she has in it.  And that's probably why this window looks so wonderful.  And it's almost completely soldered which means that this will be a completed project before you know it.

You've seen the front side, now here's the back.  Janet's Santa Window is nearing completion and I have to say that her soldering on the front side is flat out superb.   With just the face to go on the back side I suspect that we'll see this completed upon her arrival next week. 

Linda F cropped down a three letter window to just one letter due to size restraints and I think she has her 'T' pretty near completed.  There are only four background pieces to cut and then a border so Linda better start thinking about what she'll be making next because I suspect that this will be in the spotlight next week.

Lynn's 'G' Window already looks colorful and that's with just the glare of a florescent bulb hitting it from above.  When this is completed and hanging in a window I'm betting that it's going to be a real show stopper.  With just the background left to cut out I have to say that Lynn is making incrediblely good time with this project.

Next we take a look at Jeannette's latest Shrimp boat and as you can see she is ready to cut out her sky.  We haven't drawn it yet but I do have a picture of what the rigging will look like so she'll be cutting when she returns.  We'll add a few clouds to make cutting easier and this window will be every bit as beautiful as her last one. Right now it looks a bit dull but wait until you see the sky behind it.


Myrt really loves wrapping her glass for these Transom Windows that she's working on.  In fact, she seems to wrap them over and over again! Between the different sizes of foil (7/32 for the glass and 3/16 for the bevels) and the fact that she's using (or should I say SUPPOSED to be using) black backed copper foil, well, let's just say things got a little bit confusing and a few pieces needed to be re-wrapped.  But fear not because Myrt will be soldering this when she returns.

Mary Grace ran into a bit of a problem with her Sunflower window since no one seems to have any of the Spectrum Yellow glass that looks so good for sunflowers.  But we've hunted some down online and hopefully it will be here in time for classes next week, but until then Mary Grace decided to start work on this wonderful Fruit Bowl Deer Window that she saw Rowena do a few weeks ago.  Mary Grace is off to a good start but I have no clue what she'll be working on next week if the yellow glass is in...

Oh wow, what happened here?  For some reason the resolution on the camera must have got set to something impossibly small when I took the picture of Martha's Iris Window.  I guess you'll just have to take my word for it when I tell you that it's looking real good.  I promise we'll have a bigger picture next week.  Wow, you can't see anything in this picture, can you?

And that's about it this time around.  Hopefully the sky cutting tutorial helped show that no matter how daunting a project may look, if you break it down to small sections and take it once step at a time it's not nearly as bad as you might think.

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

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