Lamps and Art of Stained Glass and Fine Woods Sonoma County Stained Glass and Exotic Woods by Skip Thomsen
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Tropical Splendor, Koi, ocean, & More
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A new direction in backlighted glass panels. This 27" tall case was created to display as well
against a flat backdrop as in a corner. As shown below, this design makes the case
"go away" when viewed from anywhere near the front. Most of the case is crafted of
African Mahogany and the front bezel and trim are wenge, and exotic wood
that is nearly black. (That's why I had to photgraph it against a white backdrop.)
 

The glass design was inspired by time spent at Akaka Falls. I especially
wanted to capture the "curtains of water," as they appear to me, and
the bright spray along both sides of the long fall.

The glass is made up of several lavers, necessary to achieve a three-
dimensional look not possible with just a single layer. This piece displays
beautifully in a corner, too, and the switch for the lighting is on the back
of the top sloping panel for easy access in any display situation.
 


 
A backlighted glass panel in a case of Hawaiian koa. The high contrast between
foliage and the waterfall makes an accurate photograph difficult. The waterfall is
made up of four different layers of glass to achieve the color shifts, the
feeling of the falling water and the pool at the bottom of the falls.
 

 
A backlighted glass panel in a case of African Mahogany and Wenge.
The waterfall is made up of several different layers of glass to achieve the color
shifts, the feeling of the falling water and the pool at the bottom of the falls.
The same technique creates the realism of the shimmering pool.

 
A smaller case made of ancient fine-grain cedar encloses this back-lighted jungle scene.
The three-dimensional peek of ocean in the center of the panel is accomplished with multiple
layered pieces of glass with varying textures and colors.
 

 
 
This case is crafted of solid African mahogany with a trim of curly Koa
around the glass panel. Again, the photos do not carry across the drama of
the lighting. The red shimmers from behind when viewed from even
slightly different angles.

A backlighted glass panel in a case of various hardwoods. The photo does no justice to
the dramatic colors in the glass. The moon shadow on the sails and in the water comes from a
second layer of glass and changes with the ambient light. This is actually two cases; the smaller
of the two is suspended in the larger one and backlit independently of the glass.
 

 
"Ocean" is a stained-glass panel mounted in a cabinet of several exotic woods.
The ring around the panel is made of 16 pieces of curly mango, and the rest of
the cabinet is kamani, mahogany, kurly koa and (not-so-tropical) oak.
The ocean vignette is an overlay of several backlighted glass panels.
It is difficult to capture the color and translucency of the glass in a photograph.
 


 
This case is entirely African Mahogany, sculpted with soft lines and rounded edges.
The finish is many coats of hand-rubbed lacquer. The shimmering, three-dimensional
appearance of the ocean is created with layered glass.
 

 
A backlighted glass panel in a case of African Mahogany, trimmed with Hawaiian Koa
and Wenge. This piece is made up of four layers of glass to create the illusion of
depth and the water that seems to be moving. The shadow of the Koi
can be seen on the bottom of the lily pads.
 

 
A backlighted glass panel in a case of African Mahogany, trimmed with Hawaiian Koa.
This piece is made up of several layers of glass to create the illusion of depth and
the water that seems to be moving. The shadow of larger Koi can be seen
on the bottom of the lily padsand the lower one through
the left fin of the large one.
 

This art-glass and wood sculpture is a tribute by the artist to the spiritual
and physical power of Pele. The piece gives a sense of the incredible
contrast between the serene tropical forest and the active lava
of the volcano. The wood used in this piece is Hawaiian Koa.
 
 
Below are other views from different angles. The piece is 14" high.
 
 

 
This art-glass and wood sculpture below is in remembrance of Kalapana and the awesome power of Pele.
The piece embodies Kalapana's lush, green forest; Pele's fire; and the destruction and rebirth.
The wood used in this piece is Hawaiian Koa.

Below are other views from different angles.
 
 
 
 
 
 
The design and execution of each of these pieces is unique and
will never be reproduced. All original designs and all
patterns are destroyed after the piece is completed.
 

 Many of these pieces are on display and for sale at

THE GALLERY OF GREAT THINGS
Kamuela, Big Island of Hawaii
 
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Updated 5/11/2012