When asked what I had been doing on my "summer vacation" recently, I had the opportunity to tell of my experience mentoring two young students through the ArtStart Fusion Project. Let me introduce you to Ildiko (think Indigo as she so helpfully pointed out) and Anna, my students. Through a program put forth by Art Start of Rhinelander http://www.artstartrhinelander.org/exhibitions---events.html regional working artists are paired with local area high school age students to participate in the age old tradition of master and apprentice. Our goal was to create a variety of visual art that expresses both the individuality of each participant, as well as the creativity resulting from artistic collaboration. From there we began our journey. I asked both students to create a piece that would stand alone but would be visually pleasing when presented as one work of art. And of course I was participating in this as well.
First we, needed to come up with a design that we were all in agreement with. I asked them to stay with geometric designs as opposed to circles and curves to ease into cutting the glass. They learned that there is a difference in drawing designs for stained glass as opposed to sketching for the sake of sketching. When cutting glass it has to be cut edge to edge, so the lines in the design become very important. In a drawing you might use bolder or finer lines to show shading, but with glass you need to do that using the color of the glass or the lines that are created when 2 pieces of glass unite. After making all our lines into cuttable pieces and doing away with any extraneous lines our final design was complete. Anna's is on the left, mine is in the middle and Ildiko's is on the right. We have a common thread running through all 3 pieces which anchor them together, but allow them to stand alone. Now it was on to making 2 more copies of each design, one master copy to refer to with all pieces numbered and colors specified, one to cut the pattern pieces out, and one to use as a guide for our design.
Here Ildiko is at the drawing table putting the finishing touches on her design.I love how the person on her T-shirt seems to be very interested in what she's doing.While working on our designs we also chose the glass we all wanted to work in. We selected colors that we all could use , but we didn't necessarily use all the colors in each of our designs.Ildiko holds a piece of glass to the light to see what it will look like when hung in a window.
After cutting out her pattern piece she adheres it to the glass and begins to cut.....edge to edge remember.
Anna has cut out her pattern pieces and is also adhering them to the glass she has selected. Then she will begin the process of cutting. Next up we'll proceed to grinding. And I just have to say that they were not a squeamish lot....they took to cutting like it was second nature!