Millennium Art Glass Company
(A division of


Upon my return from studying glass painting with Peter McGrain for a week and Raphael for another week, I received a second commission for another church window. They wanted a large face painting of Jesus, about 17 x 21 inches. This was my first well paid commission :) The only problem was, after weeks of studing how to build an image from dark to light (shadows to highlights) on the SURFACE of glass, this commission required I do it all backward on the REVERSE side of the glass!

Here is the project on a day to day study. The first image is a piece of sandblasted cathedral glass, which was prepared for me by Phil Teefy at Rainbow Glass in Sacramento. Next to that, is the sketch chosen by the church to have rendered onto glass. (The big spot on his nose, is an upright glass support inside my light table).

The process was not like other painting on glass I have done, because this had to be painted on the BACK or reverse side of the glass, which means all the highlights had to be done FIRST, not last. So, that takes a LOT more concentration and technique, as well as the application of the paints backwards. It is an interesting exercise and challenge. I also only had six days to finish and deliver it back to Phil. So the first step was tracelines for the most basic hard-lines and the perimeter mask. Once that was fired, I applied the lighter colors in the hair, beard and eyebrows. Then that was fired.

The next paint application layer, was to redden and brown the background matte in the hair and to shape the features I also airbrushed tracing black (with no gum) around the eyes, nose, neck, and everywhere else as a background filler.

Then for the last firing, I added more depth with more black airbrush applications, put some light green in the eyes, and some red on the lips and fired that. Phil came by and picked it up to take to show the client, after which I may need to touch it up and/or add some last details, colors and one more firing. You can see how large the piece of glass is, even so, it is very delicate. And on a big project, the more work you put into it, the more fearful you are of dropping, or chipping or breaking it!

No you can see why it was so timely that I had a lot of training just weeks before taking on this project.

On to the <next page>

Thomas P. "Pat" Jacobsen --

P.O. Box 791, Weimar, CA, 95736-0791, U.S.A.

Phone 530.637.5923. (8:00 AM - 5:00 PM, weekdays (PST) !!)


(Last update:11.25.08)