Friday, March 26, 2010

a job done

We finished all 13 panels for St. Stanislaus Catholic Church yesterday. Installation is set for next Wednesday. They ranged in size from 38” x 38” to 38” x 61”. These panels go into a new wall that was built to create a small lobby inside the main doors to the church. Previously, when you entered the church, you entered the sanctuary. When we were first contacted about the work, the Father wanted angels on the doors and crosses on all the other panels. Fortunately, one of the ladies on the committee didn't think that lived up to the potential of the space and she did an internet search and found us.

We ultimately decided on angels for the doors, and for the rest of the panels we decided on a design motif of the seven sacraments. These are in no particular order...

extreme unction

That of course left 2 panels blank. For those we used symbols for the tree of life and the trinity. Later, they added the cry room which we divided into two panels because we simply cannot pick up and move a piece of glass that big. The cry room, for those of you uninitiated in the ways of the catholic, is where mothers (or fathers) go with crying children so that they will not disturb the other worshipers. The Father wanted a design of Jesus with the children. We tied it in by using the same border. We'll be there during the installation and will take pictures so I'll post them later.

We are very happy that we were able to finish the job and get it installed before Easter, if only just. Actually, it could have been installed Monday or Tuesday, but the Father is going to be away those days and he really wants to be there. We are very happy to be done because we have been working pretty much non-stop since late summer. Three big jobs, one after the other, squeezing in two small jobs as well. It's tiring and not just physically. We are ready for a break, some downtime, some time to spend on other of life's necessities. Ready to get back in the studio and do some new pate de verre and cast glass stuff.

The end of this job is also the end of all the contracted work we have. Two maybe out there but I'm only confident of one. Another nibble, in fact turned down doing a logo, but there are other areas in this project for us, so says the art consultant. I hope I didn't put him off by not wanting to do the logo. Really, there was no reason to do it in glass. It could have been much better done in other media. We have banked enough money to see us through for a while but these times always make me nervous.

I could do cold calls but those take so long to bear fruit if I even get a nod. Probably I will check in with certain designers, an email seeing how they are doing. Last year I started to work on a newsletter but then got busy about this time and never really got it going. Perhaps I'll resurrect that idea. I've been neglecting my website and have slipped off the first several pages of the search engines. I should do some sort of promotion. But to tell the truth, I'm tired of having to do that. There are times when I wish I had taken a different path and had some sort of retirement/pension. I know realisticly that even if I had gone that route I very probably would have lost it through two stock market crashes and the bad economy (like other people I know). I might even be unemployed with no options. Or rather the same options I have now. And my life certainly would have been different but I rather doubt, better.

So, here I am in a place I have been many times. I have a few months reprieve and I am ready for a break. Today I took the day off, indulged in doing some spring maintenance in the yard. Tomorrow, more of the same. We are just really happy to be home after being away for a week.

I know this gorgeous weather will give way to the heat and humidity of summer sooner rather than later and so I am going to enjoy as much of it as I can. Plenty of time to get busy in the studio when this has passed. good.


  1. It all looks lovely - can't wait to see the panels installed.

    I think it would be nerve wracking to not know where your next income is coming from - but you're probably right about how that different path might have brought you to the same place with not as much satisfaction.

  2. Life is good and your work and artistry is exceptional!

  3. You have worked so hard and I'm so impressed you finished on time. Wow!

    Not to worry. More jobs will come your way soon enough. I freak out when my schedule thins out, but people always call, sometimes at the last minute, but they do. They do.

    The cry room, eh? Wow.

    And extreme unction. I have no idea what that means.

  4. Brilliant committee lady! I especially like the one of the dove. Looking forward to seeing them in place, Ellen.

  5. What a marathon! The final art work is really gorgeous! Amazing actually, I have no idea how you do this glass stuff! What is that little posie that swirls like a skirt? Very sweet flower!I want to wear it.

  6. Hi Ellen

    your work for the church looks as beautiful as the tree of life you showed us recently so I look forward to seeing the panels once positioned.

    I hope that you enjoy your free time...

    Happy days

  7. I know you have been really busy and I am celebrating with you on your precious time off!! Your work on the church panels is amazing from what I could see. I will be looking forward to seeing the pics of the installation.

  8. When you install this work of art, it will bring more opportunity.

    Enjoy your down time.

  9. Just beautiful, Ellen. I love that dove especially. I'd love to see photos of these installed, particular the seven sacraments - what a great idea that was!

  10. It all looks amazing - You are very talented my friend :0)

  11. Enjoy! I'd love to see picts of the wor in place!

  12. You must be in that marvelous place of great satisfaction for a job done well and on time. Congratulations! And may you have many more lined up.

  13. fabulous to be at the finish line....great to have work to do....better to rest and recharge. Yeah for you.

  14. Ellen, this is great. I would so love to see your work in person. If you have something in galleries in Houston I would like to visit them. Think I'm going to the Houston area in April. Life is good.

  15. the panels look great! life is good, that is a good thing. smiles.

  16. What a beautiful job! Really incredible! Congrats on completing it, and on time! Enjoy your break, you've earned it!

  17. It'll be gorgeous, and things will work out. I'm learning (slowly) that it's more about the journey than the arrival--my brother-in-law doggedly stuck with the same company for 20-some odd years, carefully maxing his 401(k), taking every investment option, etc. Last year the feds revamped the company (he works for Freddie Mac) and eliminated virtually all his retirement. At 53, he's starting over. He'd wanted to manage dance companies, but decided he couldn't afford it with a family. Turns out he's come out about the same, financially...and he thinks working in the arts would have been lots more fun.

    So you never know.

  18. "Life is good"? Life is great! WOW! Everything looks so amazing, but I'm not surprised, your work is always gorgeous!

  19. the panels are beautiful!
    I'm looking forward to seeing them installed

  20. The work looks amazing, I'd love to see the completed works in the church for myself.

  21. I hear you. We lost a pile of money, and our house is worth a third of what it was appraised at in 2006 and is in short sale at a huge loss. Oh well. We won't retire as early as we suspected. You are right to count your blessings, that's what I do. I focus on what I do have, my hubby, my kids and grandkids, and my love of writing. What beautiful work you do--that's an amazing gift you have right there.

  22. Congratulations on getting this large work done - and I trust that new work will arise after you've taken some time to regenerate. Enjoy the spring!


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