Love’s Messenger Window

Completed in June 2008, Love’s Messenger was inspired by Maria Spartali Stillman’s painting of the same name. We have altered the countenance of the figure to make this window a portrait. This window has all the bells and whistles – Painted features, multiple plated layers, three dimensional glass and lots of piecework.

One of the image’s main challenges was to give each of the many different kinds of fabrics different textures and looks. The blue dress had to feel rich and velvety, while the scarf the figure is wearing had to look light and transparent. In the lower left corner is a piece of embroidery which we wanted to have a knobbly texture.

The window panes in this piece also presented an exciting challenge because in the original painting, the panels are constructed from “rondels” (thick pieces of glass that resemble the bottom of bottles). To recreate this look in our window, we used actual rondels and tinted them with a plated layer of glass from behind. The curtained window in the upper right quarter of the window has an airy, transparent look created by using plated layers with the rondel pattern on the reverse.

Bill created the cartoon (working drawing) for the window by hand using the painting as a point of reference. Bill also hand painted the face and hands of the figure, kiln-firing the details onto the surface of the glass. This elaborate window is housed in a light box and is in a private collection.

Written by Century Studios