Page 9 - Sourcebook 2015 OE
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Sourcebook 2015

                                                The Stained Glass Association of America

                                                    Selecting a Studio

     Once the decision to include stained       particular studio’s work and to determine how well the designs translate into finished
glass in a building project is made, there      work.
are several important factors which should
be considered in selecting the studio with           The Stained Glass Association of America stresses the importance of checking a stu-
which to work. The selection process            dio’s references and questioning such factors as the studio’s ability to complete work
involves many factors, not the least of         within the given time frame and to work with architects and construction companies
which is the reason or reasons stained          involved in the creation of the entire project. The SGAA also recommends checking jobs
glass is being incorporated into the            which are several years old to make sure the designs have stood up to time, environmen-
building, including:                            tal codes and standards. It is also important to check the studio’s finances to insure that
• a request from the client to incorporate      the business is stable and able to support the project.

  art into the building                              If at all possible, the client should visit the studios under consideration for the proj-
• a need to control light                       ect. Insight into the company’s work procedures, abilities and particular approach would
• the need to block an unattractive view        be best determined by observing the craftspersons and their working environment.

  while still admitting natural light                Having conducted interviews and researched the studios considered, the client is then
• the need to create an environment or          in a position to select the studio to perform the commission. A contract should then be
                                                drawn up which includes a description of the subject to be addressed; specifications for
  mood                                          the finished windows; the process of design acceptance; overall budget and payment
     Different stained glass studios excel      schedule; deadlines for the submission (and selection) of designs, cartoons and the fin-
                                                ished stained glass; and the responsibility of final installation.
in different aspects of the craft. A studio
which specializes in contemporary design             With the field narrowed to one studio and a contract between the studio and client
may be ill equipped to create medieval-         agreed upon, the process of design begins. While the design process will be unique to
style windows. The initial interviews, in       each commission, it will generally be a process of ongoing dialogue between the studio
which the architect or client meets with        and the client to insure that the client’s needs and expectations are met. This is also the
representatives of several different studios,   time to finalize the selection of the glass palette to be incorporated into the final project.
is the time to determine which studios are
best suited to create glass for the particular       Once a design is selected, the process of cartooning and fabrication can begin.
project. The initial interview should           Cartooning consists of full-size drawings of the stained glass project which illustrate the
include as much detail as possible about        placement of glass and the material which will be used to secure the glass in place, such
the project, including subject, specifica-      as lead, copper foil or epoxy. The cartoon will serve as the pattern as the piece is fabri-
tions, style and budget. This is also the       cated.
time to discuss how many different
designs will be submitted for considera-             Fabrication involves the actual building of the stained glass, using techniques appro-
tion in a particular project and what the fee   priate to the project. While the finished piece may be quite large, stained glass is gener-
for those designs will be.                      ally built in smaller panels rarely larger than three feet on the longest side. This allows
                                                the installed piece to better withstand the stresses it will endure when in place in the
     Following the initial interview, the       building.
client should be able to develop a short list
of possible studio candidates. Once this             Installation should generally either be performed by the studio which creates the
list is developed, the process of selection     stained glass or be subcontracted by that studio. Stained glass which will have an exteri-
continues with investigating the studio’s       or facing requires an airtight seal in the frame. If secondary or protective glazing is to be
background and past work. The client            incorporated, there should be between 3⁄4" and 11⁄2" clearance between the stained glass and
should request slides of work completed         the secondary glazing; vents should always be incorporated into the design to prevent
by the different studios as well as the         condensation and allow air circulation between the stained glass and its secondary glaz-
design sketches from those projects. This       ing.
allows the client to see the nature of that


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