Cummins Stehn Process

As a commissioner of new work, the client is able to select an artist whose work they admire to create a new artwork for their site. The steps set out below are a guide to the way the process of commissioning a new stained glass window would usually run.

In the "Gallery” section, you can follow the actual steps that have been taken in one new project. "Making a new Stained Glass window" includes photographs to illustrate particular items. Link to Gallery


Clients make contact with the glass artists and arrange a time to speak about the commission. Gerry and Jill’s glass wholesaler can arrange safe delivery of windows anywhere on the east coast.

2 Clients speak by phone or in person to Gerry and Jill and describe the project they have in mind. The practical information they need to have is:
The location and type of building (eg St. Monica’s Catholic Cathedral in Cairns, All Saint’s Anglican Church, Kangaroo Point.)
The location of the area to be glazed – ie Where it is in the building (eg. Facing West above the Altar or North in the Hospital Chapel)
The rough size and shape of the window (eg Circle 3m diameter, or lancet window 2400mm x 600mm.) These approximate dimensions allow a “ball park” price to be established.
The theme or concept for the proposed window. (eg It may be a memorial window, so the person or event it is commemorating would be described).
(WARNING!) Gerry and Jill design their own windows in collaboration with their commissioners. Some commissioners do a substantial amount of preliminary art and committee work, arrive at the studio with their drawings, and then realise (too late!) what they have done cannot be made or is unsuitable in glass, or what they could have had “if only they had known...” Gerry and Jill’s advice? Contact them early in the process!
3 Gerry and Jill establish the parameters of the design and approximate cost/s (including installation/protectors, etc.) for the project, and discuss any ensuing issues, including a working timeline and, depending on variable factors such as the length of time the project is expected to take, a payment schedule. When this is mutually agreed the project is begun.
4 Gerry and Jill arrange to get accurate measurements for the window and may organise a site visit to inspect the site, and determine light source. A ladder, scaffold, snorkel lift or occasionally even a crane may be required for this as well as for installation, depending on where the window is located.
5 Gerry designs a detailed scale drawing, which is submitted to the client for approval and from which the full size cartoons will later be drafted. Small windows may be drawn life size at this time to save costs.
6 Jill cuts the coloured glass from the full size cartoons. The glass pieces that require painting are given to Gerry to paint and kiln-fire before being returned to Jill to fit into the lead matrix of the panel. Once the panel has been soldered together, it is puttied and cleaned before being transported to the site and installed.

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