As much as I would love to do it, most of the leading for this project is being done elsewhere so that I can concentrate on the glass painting for this window. So it was exciting to see the first panels being leaded expertly this week by Owen and Stacey of the Architectural Glass Centre, Swansea.
Thanks to a ‘mislaid’ , (code for ‘buried under other stuff’) camera cable, I’ve been a bit delayed putting these images up showing the next step of sandblasting the glass (this is one of 13 panels and the blasting goes on!!) in readiness for the meaty stuff – painting!
Having painted on the glue resists, these images show the glass before, during and after sandblasting.
Sandblasting is an industrial process which involves the glass being etched by a high pressure air jet carrying abrasive powder. I’m doing it in a ventilated sandblasting cabinet and everything gets nicely dusty and dull as you will see. This process eats away the surface of the glass to leave a frosted appearance and also can create varied colour/texture when used with flashed glass (glass with a thin layer of one colour laid over another whilst molten). This can be seen in the leaves and some of the other colours where the colour has been removed to show the clear glass beneath.
This stage for me is about preparing the canvas of the glass for painting .Some of the images show the glass pieces held onto a clear backing sheet to see all the colours together (the black dots are plasticine, used to hold them on temporarily!) The thing to remember with all these ‘in progress’ images is that I am working towards a finished idea and this is one stage of many so what you see here is still a world away from the final thing although it does start to give an idea.. .
ps., I’ve not illustrated the glamorous part of the process washing off all the glue resists in the sink – you’ll just have to imagine that bit!
Whilst I carry on cutting glass for the Wythall Window, I’ve started applying some glue resists to some of the glass I’ve already cut to prepare to do some sandblasting.
The glue shows in the photos as white as it’s still wet and, when dry, I will sandblast the glass pieces to play with the surface finish and/or amount of colour in some of the pieces by removing a thin ‘flash’ of colour from the main body of glass….