Design of the Month · March 2006

  • The Grand Tetons

    "The Grand Tetons"

    I have always loved the rugged beauty and majesty of mountains, so it was only fitting that I design a window of one of my favorite mountain ranges, the Grand Tetons. The idea for this window began as my husband and I were working with our architect in designing our current home. As we discussed the different elements of this home, the idea of a special place for one of my windows evolved.

    Creating the right design started when I selected one of my husband's photographs from one of our trips to the Tetons. He took this picture from Snake River Overlook during the fall of 2004. I imported this photo into the Glass Eye 2000 and began working in stages.

    The window needed to be 36" in diameter to fit into the 48" diameter window of our home. I opened a new design file and created a circle of 36" in diameter. Easy! Then I created the design for just the mountains and resized them to fit nicely within the 36" circle. At this point, I realized that I needed to take some artistic liberties with the mountains, which I did.

    I opened a new file and began work on the foreground, with the trees and the river. This part took the longest, as I wanted to capture some of the trees, but not have too much detail which could make things look too busy. I used the "Show Background" feature a lot during this phase to toggle my photograph on and off, which showed me the differences between my drawing and the photo.

    Once I was satisfied with that aspect of the design, I used the "group" feature of Glass Eye 2000 to select design sections I liked of the river and trees.

    I copied and pasted the foreground into the design with the mountains and sized the foreground to be in a pleasing proportion to the mountains. After a number of iterations, I came up with a design that I really liked. Making adjustments or corrections to the design is so simple in Glass Eye 2000 — it really saves time from having to redraw a design by hand. I do some hand drawing as a foundation for a design, and then import the drawing into Glass Eye 2000. Ultimately, I do the bulk of my work and fine-tuning of a design in Glass Eye 2000.

    The piece is done in copper foil with a lead border. The center of the window has a hinge point where the base of the mountains meets up with the foreground, and that required reinforcement. I also added some reinforcement to a couple of the other long horizontal lines to give the piece added strength. With the reinforced horizontal lines, the lead border, and the oak frame, it has plenty of stability. The size of the piece made it challenging to flip it to solder the back side. I was able to "sandwich" the piece between two sheets of heavy-duty insulation board and turn it to solder the back. I managed to finish soldering and cleaning each side completely to limit the number of times it had to be turned. I finished the solder lines with JAX pewter black patina, which gives a nice aged look to the solder lines.

    Every day I get to look at the beauty of the Tetons preserved in stained glass, and I smile remembering how much fun we have when we visit and hike the Tetons.

    ~ Kathleen Krucoff

    About the artist

    Kathleen Krucoff

    Kathleen's day job is that of a software engineer, which allows her to utilize her B.S. in Computer Science. However, her real love is creating something wonderful in stained glass. Her endeavors are divided among time spent with her husband and her basset hounds, her professional career, and her art.

    Stained glass provides an excellent outlet for her creativity. She has been mentored by some gifted and talented stained glass artists. She is a member of the Palmer Lake Art Group and the Glass Artists Fellowship.

    Kathleen works on commission. Examples of her designs can be seen at her website and she can be reached by email. Much of her inspiration comes from her husband's photographs of nature.

    This pattern may be used to make one or more artworks for sale or personal enjoyment. This pattern may be printed for personal use only and may not be sold or given away in printed or electronic form.

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