Adventures in Dangerous Art
I'm learning the art (or is it a craft?) of stained glass. At this weblog, I record progress, note useful links, and document flesh wounds.


The Art League
Where I took a lead class and a 3D construction class.

Weisser Glass Studio
Where I buy supplies, and where I took a foil class.

Virginia Stained Glass Co.
Where I buy supplies if I happen to be in Springfield and if they happen to have what I want.

Great prices on supplies, a lively and helpful Glass Chat message board, and excellent Technical Tips on stained glass tools and techniques.

Glass Galleries Links List
A list of Glass Chat users who've uploaded photos of their work.

The StoreFinder: Stained Glass Store Front
Lots of articles. Tutorials
Even more articles. Particularly recommended: "Anatomy of a design" and "Wood frames."
Courtesy of Google Groups.

Nancy's Beginner Tips and Tricks
Scoring, breaking, soldering, finishing, and more.

Splinter Removal Tips

Syndicate this site
Someone out there is using XML for something... right?

Movable Type
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It's a glass cutter.
October 21, 2002: Vector-Fu
Today I fixed a problem I've had for a lot of years. The issue? Adobe Illustrator made me feel stupid.

The "duh" effect was doubly potent because I pride myself on being pretty handy with Photoshop. I've been using it for seven years or so. I never took a Photoshop class, but trial-and-error always served me well. Then for icing on the cake, I was lucky enough to work in 1996 through 1998 with a group of really amazing digital artists and animators, who were extremely generous in sharing all their tips and tricks with me.

Trial-and-error got me nowhere with Illustrator, not even when I tried to remember what I'd learned of CorelDRAW at my first graphic artist job in 1994 (sounds fancy, but what I did was to slap together car and grocery ads for a suburban newspaper at five dollars an hour---very little talent or even skill was required). So mostly I stuck to Photoshop, even when it wasn't 100% suited to the task at hand. During the process of first designing and then sizing my crocus panel pattern in Photoshop, I knew just enough about Illustrator to know that it would have been much more suited to the task.

Then I got to looking at some photos someone posted from the Smith Museum of Stained Glass Windows in Chicago, and realized that for certain types of non-representational stained-glass designs, especially very geometric or symmetrical patterns, Photoshop wouldn't cut it, and neither would my meager freehand-drawing skills.

And that was what it took to get me to call New Horizons and inquire about Illustrator classes last Friday. It turned out they had an Illustrator Level 1 class today. So I hopped on it. I'm glad I did. The Pen Tool no longer makes me want to throw things.

My Illustrator instructor---a freelance cartoonist---took the time today to plug his own personal website, so I will too. It includes several tutorials on Photoshop, Illustrator, and other stuff... mostly Photoshop, unfortunately for me. Maybe if a whole bunch of y'all click through, he'll be grateful enough for the site traffic that he'll be moved to put up some more Illustrator material.

(I am as subtle as a blunt trauma injury to the head.)

Posted by Michelle on October 21, 2002 04:42 PM

I tell ya, for quick vector drawing, without overhead illustrator mayhem, or even freehand for that matter, I'd use flash or fireworks.

Quick easy vector stylie fun.

Posted by: mike on October 21, 2002 09:50 PM

For my own reference: found an old thread on relating to Illustrator as a tool for stained-glass patterns, here.

I've had it in my head that it might be a nice piece to write here to download trials of the various stained-glass-design software packages that exist and do some compare and contrast, but having more clues first would probably be a good idea. Later at some point perhaps.

Posted by: Michelle on October 23, 2002 04:32 PM

I feel your pain with Illustrator, Michelle. The interface looks *kinda sorta* like Photoshop's -- except it's so totally not.


Posted by: roe on October 24, 2002 02:15 AM

I know, right? Rrr.

Posted by: Michelle on October 24, 2002 08:39 AM

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