Unconscious inspiration, right inside my window.

window pane leaded glassI’m not always aware of where my inspiration comes from.

I often keep images and ideas in the back of my creative mind… a sort of mental scrapbook of things I think are cool or interesting. And those concepts find their way into my work, often without my direct awareness.

I think that happened with my Cathedral bead series.

I’ve always told my customers that the inspiration came from the leaded glass lanterns in my childhood church. And I think that’s true about their shape… but I think I discovered the inspiration for the stringer design while I was taking my time getting out of bed a few mornings ago.


On my bedroom wall I have a series of small framed photographs. One of them is a photograph I took of a leaded glass window in our first house.

I was always very fond of that window from our dining room and enjoyed the sunset light that streamed through it. It was a long window place high up on the wall, so the only view from it was of the tree branches outside. That window always seemed to bring sunlight and tranquility.

green cathedral bead jc herrellAs I was staring at the picture, just after I woke up, I realized it was where my original cathedral pattern came from. Everytime I draw it there’s an unconsious part of me that remembers how fond I was of that window but I just became aware of it the other day.

Up until now I just thought I really liked making the leaded glass pattern. Now I realize I hold the design a little closer to my heart than I once thought I did!

red cathedral glass bead jc herrellJC Herrell is a glass artist who blogs from her home studio in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

See more from JC at JCHerrell.com or jcherrell.blogspot.com


2 Responses to “Unconscious inspiration, right inside my window.”

  1. jean Says:

    Very cool! thank you for that! and for your great bead photos as well — boy ! they are lovely!

  2. lydiamuell Says:

    Jennifer, I really enjoyed reading this post by you. The beads are incredible. . . Not only are they supreme in their visual appeal, but the angular proficiency of the design really blows me away. The distance between each dot and it’s unfaltering connecting line within the pattern screams “Perfection!”

    Like you, I grew up looking at stained glass lanterns and windows. My church also had many. Often times I didn’t even hear the message that was being passed along by our Pastor. . . I was too busy exploring how the morning sun filtered through each tiny colorful pane of glass.

    KUDOS on these brilliant pieces of work!!

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