Your Stained Glass Tracing Brush

What angle? Upright? – Or diagonal?

This is another point the glass painter must remember – especially when tracing an image from a design which lies beneath the glass.


How upright is your brush?

Have a look at this …

The advantage of a slant

The advantage of a slant like this:

Stained glass tracing brush

Notice how this time – this time (not always) – my tracing brush isn’t upright

Yes, the advantage of a slant is: your eyes can clearly see your brush’s tip.

This means your eyes can look down directly from above and make sure your brush is going exactly where you want it to:

Stained glass tracing brush

You see how I can look down directly from above?

This means I have an uninterrupted view.

I can see directly down to my brush’s tip.

So I can be sure my tip is exactly where I want it to be.

By contrast, if my brush were upright, it might be harder for me to get this information.

Might be harder.

The thing is, you must decide this for yourself.

Decide this for yourself, each stroke you paint

Reason I mention this is, the angle of your brush – upright or slanted: if slanted, how steeply? – is another small variable which you the glass painter must be aware of.

To begin with, we think about it consciously. That is, slowly. Like learning to dance: “quick, quick, slow – quick, quick, slow”.

With time, you adjust your brush’s angle without thinking.

So I mention it to you today so that, if this is new to you, you can experiment with this idea and start gaining that spontaneous flexibility which will allow you to trace beautifully.

Next time you trace …

Next time you trace, consider the angle of your brush. Consider what you must see to do the quality of work you want to do. Try different angles and explore how this helps or hinders.

Only you can say.

But if you don’t know, you can’t improve – and I absolutely want you to go as far as you possibly can.

So yes, I am a hard task-master.


David Williams of Williams & Byrne, the glass painters