Stained Glass Paintings
Traditional Stained Glass windows and Tiffany style lamps are made by cutting colored glass into shapes, arranging them into a pattern, affixing a lead strip around the edges, then soldering the leaded edges together.
I don't do that.
I make window hangings and large sun-catchers using translucent paint on a solid pane of regular old clear glass.
I call them Stained Glass Paintings.
About the process
I start with a pane of glass from a standard picture frame. Old glass is best, it's thicker. I find them at thrift stores and garage sales, usually tucked in the back with other unpopular items. I've also painted on reclaimed window panes found at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, they have nice large sized panes of thick glass.
First I clean the glass, then cover the edges with electricians black tape- just so I don't cut myself while working on it.
Next I draw a template using a dry erase pen or a sharpie marker. It's easy to make quick changes this way and add or remove elements; just by wiping it off the glass and redrawing it.
Once I am happy with the design I turn the glass over and apply black "lead lines" over my colored marker template. The outlines are applied using a thick black glossy medium that takes a few hours to dry, I usually let them sit overnight.
Finally I add translucent colored paint to the sections. The colored glass sections can be made to have "texture" by applying gloss gel medium and shaping it with various tools.
It takes the translucent paint a few days to fully dry, then I get to work on the frames. Usually I will sand the wood, re-stain it if necessary, and build a brace for the back to hold the glass pane with the least amount of obstruction.
Made as a gift for the Lubbock Downtown Farmers Market association, to thank them for letting me be a vendor there for so many years. It was a great time I will never forget!
Sometimes I embed little elements directly into the paint. In this one I created some random colorful designs on my computer, printed them on clear overhead projector sheets, cut them out and embedded them in resin.
In the center of the closeup above, you might recognize part of a scene from a Jimi Hendrix album. I scanned the album, cropped and enhanced some parts, printed it on overhead projector clear sheets, cut it to fit the shape and embedded it on the glass in resin.