I make traditional kiln fired glass paintings. The examples below are either my own style or copies I have made of existing pieces. I make copies to really learn the techniques employed by craftsmen and women from medieval to Victorian times. Techniques vary widely and to really get to know them it is essential to try them out for yourself.
Traditional glass painting is technically challenging and can involve several kiln firings. At each stage the firing process can be unpredictable and mean starting over. Unlike paper or canvas, glass has no ‘give’ – it’s very unforgiving and shows the tiniest error which can make the process frustrating! It is a thousand+ year old traditional craft and apart from a few modern tools (electric kilns!), the techniques used are almost exactly the same as those used in medieval times. This Jesse Tree window in York Minster is the oldest complete stained glass window in England. It was made in 1170 and you can still see the painted elements such as the robe.
I think glass painting has many similarities with pencil drawing. It is a challenging technique and very technical – you can never rest on your laurels and there is always something new to learn.