If ever there was a flower most suited to stained glass art it must be the Iris. They work so well together I am inspired beyond words whenever I see them. The starting point for this Moody Iris PDF Pattern design came from a sheet of Youghiogheny Stipple Glass. The beauty of this glass is that it contains variations of color and hues right across the sheet. Looking at this I decided that the best way to capture this was by using Irises.
Drawing the flowers first then arranging them in order, before adding the leaves and background. I used the darker tones for the flowers in the rear, keeping the lighter glass for the flowers in the foreground. It’s best to try and create the composition in layers I find. For example, background, centre-ground and foreground. This would be a simple way of looking at it. This adds depth and perspective to the picture and engages the viewer. The design took me a day to produce which is pretty good for me.
Stained Glass Pattern Information
Downloadable PDF pattern prints actual size 36 inch x 14 inch, ( 916 mm x 356 mm ) across eight pages. Instructions provided for enlarging the pattern to your required size when printing. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to print this pattern.
Effort number three in my ” Tiny Tiffany” series Scene with Irises. This time I am using irises which work so well in stained glass. The panel is 12 inch in diameter but could be re-sized larger if required. I am curious about these small panels to see how a landscape works in such a small space.
I look at this panel as having five layers. The sky is farthest back, then the mountains followed by the water. The light green glass makes up the foreground placing the flowers right at the front. I find this is a good method to use in stained glass as it helps get perspective into the picture.
By putting the flowers in the front of the scene I was able to make them larger. This helped as I needed to get some small pieces of yellow in to light them up a bit. It was a bit of a challenge but like to think I managed it ok. I find using the water glass adds another dimension even though the piece is so small. It underlines the mountains and brings your eye into the foreground.
Here is the finished panel placed in a window on crescent stand. These are available here
As you can see from the above picture I have also soldered two round eyelets onto the edging came for attaching a chain.
Stained Glass Pattern Information
The pattern for this piece is available in the pattern store as a PDF file. The original panel size is 12 inches which can be scaled up using the printing instructions included in the PDF download.
Downloadable PDF pattern prints actual size 12-inch diameter, ( 305 mm x 305 mm ) across four pages. Instructions are provided for enlarging the pattern to your required size when printing. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to print this pattern.
The starting point for this Two Irises panel was the upper background piece of glass. I had this leftover from a previous commission and wanted to make full use of its beautiful colors. The original panel is 15-inch diameter and I had enough for the area above the flowers. The purple glass looked so good against it making the Two Irises an obvious choice. For the lower background, behind the leaves, I found another leftover piece that fitted the space. I sketched out my design idea and spent a little time making sure of the position of the flowers. It was important to me to get as much of the upper background in as possible. After all, this was the whole point of making this panel. Having settled on my finished pattern I set about cutting out the glass pieces, 59 in total.
The Story Behind The Border
The finished panel looked superb even if I say so myself, I couldn’t believe how well it turned out. But there was one thing I wasn’t happy about. At the centre of the panel between the Two Irises, I have a central leave that runs from the top to the bottom of the panel. This was an integral part of my design but it creates a slight weakness in the structure of the panel. This is what is known as a “hinge Joint” and is something you want to avoid if at all possible. Now I wasn’t going to take my panel apart so my only option was to strengthen the perimeter. One of the best ways to add strength to any panel is by adding a border.
So here it is my completed panel hanging in a window.
Irises at Slade Upper section showing the flower detail
About the Panel
I loved making this panel right from the initial idea through to applying the final patina. It started off as a bold sketch, I wanted to get movement into the flowers and leaves. At the same time, I had to leave room for the background glass to shine through. This is what I find with stained glass design, the composition is so important to the finished piece. I like doing pieces with lots of flowers in them but too many can be as bad as too few. It’s also important to leave space for the background glass to achieve a balanced look.
The size of this panel is 34.5 inches x 23 inches (880mm x 590mm)
which at the time was the largest copper foil panel I had attempted. Framed with 12mm zinc came which adds strength all around the perimeter it is quite robust.
A Little Piece of History
There are no known drawings for Van Gogh’s original “Irises painting as he considered it more of a study than a masterpiece. It was the first work he produced during his stay at the Saint Paul-de-Mausole in Saint-Remy, France. He painted four studies of Irises in all out of a total of 130 artworks. The other famous picture in this collection is “Starry Night”. Both pictures were exhibited in the Salon des Independants in September of that year. Unfortunately the final year before Van Gogh’s death.
This is the full-size Irises at Slade panel. The inspiration for this piece came from Vincent Van Gogh’s series of Iris paintings. These were produced at the Saint Paul-de-Mausole asylum in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence in France. The “Glowing Irises” sold by Sotheby’s in New York for $53.9 million in 1987. Which was, at the time the most expensive artwork ever sold at auction. Alan Bond an Australian businessman was the purchaser. It later transpired that unfortunately, he didn’t have enough money to pay for it. Two years later it was re-sold to the J Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles where it remains to this day.
Irises at Slade Background Story
No such drama around my panel I’m happy to say. In fact, I still own it and am hoping to find a place for it one day. I had seen a few stained-glass copies of Van Gogh’s painting on various websites and online platforms. I didn’t want to do a straight copy, it was more the color and composition that I thought would work well.
So I set about drawing and believe me this took some time. The thing with stained glass design is you have to think of every line and shape. This involves moving various elements until all the pieces work in harmony. If you get it wrong, and I have done in the past the medium is so unforgiving. The light shines through your work and highlights every imperfection. On a panel this size 34.5 x 23 inches I wanted everything perfectly aligned. I had done previous studies of Irises and they always work well so for me this was the big one.
Irises at Slade Lower section close up photograph showing some of the detail in the lower flowers
The thing that stood out for me in Van Gogh’s painting was the flowers in the lower section. So I included this element in my design. This spreads the beautiful blues and purples throughout the picture and balances the composition.
Irises as I am sure you are aware have tiny flecks of bright yellow stamen within the flower. No matter how hard I tried I couldn’t get this feature into my design. The solution I came up with was to use a bright golden yellow between the stork and the flower head. This way I had the yellow against the blues and purples and it also illuminated the lower section of the panel. The background glass is a Youghiogheny Stipple glass titled “Landscape”. Brown glass shown depicting the earth is a Uroboros granite backed Glass. Uroboros Glass also makes up the stems and leaves. Irises are a mixture of Uroboros and Youghiogheny Glasses.
Page 1. A full-colour photograph and description of the original panel.
Page 2. Key and glass codes ( including manufacturers ) of the original glass used, plus a few tips and copyright information.
Page 3. Printing instructions and options.
Page 4. Full-size pattern 34.5 x 23 inches.
Where possible I have included the manufacturers and catalogue codes for glass I used in the original panel although this is only a guide and not a requirement.
Feel free to include the glass of your choice and let your imagination run wild.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO BE SURE OF YOUR PURCHASE AS THERE ARE NO REFUNDS FOR DIGITAL FILES