How do you get the faces on the glass?

The stained glass panels that feature images of faces and text (such as the Melville, Four Women and Eight Faces panels) use a unique process developed by Tom Krepcio involving computer imaging combined with screenprinting and some brushwork by hand, akin to a monoprinting process in printmaking.

Will the paint wear off? (is it permanent?)

The paint used for the all the panels, including the quarry faces, is the same used in the Gothic Cathedrals and will last for centuries. After being fired to a temperature of 1200 degrees fahrenheit the paint becomes a permanent part of the glass, impervious to the elements.

Where do you get your glass?

I use only the finest sheet glass from Europe and the U.S. - with a preference for handblown glasses. I am especially fond of using flashed glasses. A flashed glass is a flat sheet of glass that has been blown with a thick base of clear (or light color) glass and a thin layer of deep colored glass. This thin layer of deep colored glass can be acid etched, engraved or blasted off giving a two color effect in a single piece of glass. For a more detailed description of how handblown sheet glass is made visit the Lambert's website.

How do you create the effect of several colors in a small area (such as in 'three figures')?

The multiple layer panels (such as the Drawn Face, Three Figures, Three Faces, Pink Angel and Hollyhocks Panels) represent the way I use the computer to simulate a four color printing process using layers of flashed glass. A color photograph or drawing is scanned into a computer. The image is manipulated to size and color balance, then color separated and used to make individual silkscreens. The silkscreens corresponding to cyan, magenta and yellow are used to screen a resist on to flashed blue, red and yellow glass. These pieces of glass with resist are sandblasted, then fire polished. The silkscreen corresponding to black is used to screen a layer of black vitreous paint onto the blue layer. After this last layer is fired in the kiln, all the layers are placed together. The process lends itself to different variations of the same design, as well as dramatic light effects. Look at the 'story' of the Pink Angel panel for some idea of the process.

Where do you buy that patterned glass used in the patchwork pieces?

The flashed glass that I start with is readily available - however, I create all the designs and patterns on the pieces of glass. All are either acid etched, sandblasted or engraved by me. The individual pieces of glass in the patchwork panels and patchwork boxes represent a crazy quilt of my career. That is to say, the pieces are accumulated from tests, extras and unused pieces from older panels and boxes. Check out the pdf documents on the Patchwork Box MJ page. This 'legend' shows the source of all the individual pieces of glass in this box.

Why is it called 'stained' glass?

The term 'stained glass' is a bit of a misnomer, as the staining of glass only refers to one (now relatively obscure) technique known as silver staining, where silver nitrate is applied to the glass and fired at a low temperature to produce a yellow stain on the glass (seen in the Hollyhocks) . There are not many studios who use this process any more on a regular basis and the majority of the stained glass seen today does not feature this technique at all. The glass used today is sometimes referred to as 'pot metal', because the color in the glass is introduced in the pot of the furnace. Again, for a good description of the process of making hand blown sheet glass, visit the Lambert's site.

Do you do workshops?

    Information on recent workshops can be found on the Tom Krepcio Workshops page. If you are interested in attending a workshop or simply want to be kept posted on developments check there or contact me at I am also available to do individual tutoring and consultation.

What most determines the cost of a piece?

In a single word, complexity. The size of a piece is important and using the best quality material does bring the price up somewhat but these are nothing compared to complexity. This involves not only how many pieces per foot (or per inch), but alos what techniques are used as well as the cost of development and research for new processes, etc. These all factor in to the overall notion of how complex a given piece is.

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