What are Coloured Glass Blocks?

What are Glass Blocks? What Colors are used to Paint Glass Surfaces? What are the Materials Required? What are the Points to be Considered? How Combining Colors can affect the Final Finish?
coloured glass blocks

Coloring different things with paint is a hobby for every child. But glass painting with acrylic colours has become a trend these days. You can also make coloured glass blocks with acrylic paints. Now is the time to begin experimenting with your favorite patterns. 

1. What are Glass blocks?

A person coloring the flower and leaves drawing on a glass surface: coloured glass blocks 1

An architectural element that is made from glass is known as glass brick or glass blocks. They obstruct anyone to see within from outside or inside but allow light to enter. They are available in different sizes, textures, colors, and forms. The coloured glass blocks are the ones which are painted in order to give it a special look. (See Where does Sea Glass come from?)

2. What are its Advantages and Disadvantages?

Before you use color on the glass, you need to clean the surface of the glass. Make sure you clean the glass thoroughly to make it free from dirt, oil, and impurities. They are used in place of basic glass windows. You can fix them in the bathroom, exterior windows at the front of the house, or any such place. The advantages include

Disadvantages include,

  • Corrosion due to the presence of alkaline reaction,
  • Not safe for areas prone to earthquakes,
  • They are brittle, so can easily break. 

3. How Glass Painting with Acrylic Colours is Convenient?

The use of acrylic paints for coloured glass blocks has become popular for painting glasses for the following reasons. Must read the art of teaching art.

  • It dries faster than other paints.
  • It is easy to use and easier to apply.
  • It has long-lasting properties.
  • It is water-resistant.
  • It is less toxic than other paints.
  • It is easier to clean the glasses painted with acrylic colors. (See What are the top 10 favorite colors?)

4. What are the Reasons to Choose Enamel-Based Paint?

Colred glass blocks: coloured glass blocks 3

Enamel paints are available in different types with different finishes, so you have a wide variety of choices. They usually take more time to dry in comparison to water-based paints, but the wait is worth it because they have a durable finish for your coloured glass blocks. (See What Orders do the Rasta Colors Go In?)

5. What are the Ways to make the Paint Stick?

The best variety of acrylic paint to use for glass painting is enamel paint because they are the most suitable for painting smooth surfaces. This acts as the base for the paint because it is the best way to make the paint stick. Follow these steps before you begin the painting process:

  • You may also apply primers to the surface of the glass to ensure that the paint sticks to the surface.
  • The primers can be applied with a brush or from a spray for coloured glass blocks.
  • Leave the glass aside to enable the primer to set properly and completely adhere to the glass surface. This may take roughly 24 hours to 72 hours.

Now you can feel that the surface is a bit rougher than before. This is what you need as a base before you start painting. (See What does Orange and Green make?)

6. How to make the Paint Last for a Long time?

  • If you cleaned the surface and began with proper technique then you have done half the task. Now you just need to apply a sealant or a varnish.
  • This will protect the paint from scratches and make it last longer. (Also read What Colors do Mixing Pink and Blue make?)

7. What Materials & Supplies are Required?

Bucket full of paint brushes, sponges, and colors: coloured glass blocks 2

Other than the preferred acrylic glass paints and markers to paint your coloured glass blocks, you will need the following things.

  • Surface or board (resting or inclined) you want to paint on,
  • Paintbrush with soft bristles and foam brushes in different sizes and angles,
  • Applicator sponges. (See Which colors go with burgundy?)

8. What are the Points required to  Select the Type of Paint?

A lotus painted in pink with purple background on a glass surface.

The choice of paint depends upon the type of art you are going to make. If you are going to make temporary coloured glass blocks, then it is better to use washable acrylic paints. But permanent acrylic paints are beneficial if you are planning to paint the surface permanently. For a long-lasting property, it is better to use enamel paint. Take a look at the following points to consider while selecting the right paint for your work. 

  • Consistency: Paints from different brands have different consistencies because one may be more dry or loose than the other. So, it is better to match their consistency beforehand. Otherwise, mixing two colors with different consistencies will not result in the shade that you were expecting. 
  • Transparency: Opaque colors are going to completely block the light, but transparent colors will let the light shine through the glasses. Solid paint is bright and dark, while loose paint will have less brightness. A solid paint will give less or no transparency, but the loose paint will be a bit translucent: The decision regarding the transparency of colors for coloured glass blocks depends upon the purpose you are using the paint. (See Is White or Black really a Colour?)
  •  Resistance to fading (Lightfastness): Paints often fade away as they are exposed to strong ultraviolet rays of sunlight. Lightfastness is the property of paints that makes them resistant to fading when exposed to strong light. So, if you are planning to expose your work to strong sunlight, then choose colors with a lightfastness property. But if you are not bothered by their fading, then fugitive colors will be fine. 
  • Final Finish: The final finish is the final look that is achieved after the paint dries. The final finish also depends upon the type of color you selected, and it can be a glossy, frosted, or matte finish. (See How to Make a Smoke Bomb?)

Some varieties of final finishes include crystal gloss enamel paints that will give you a finish that is neither too glossy nor too frosty, frosted enamel paints(that will give a thin coat finish with a little color to it), and glossy enamel paints. These are good for an opaque finish when you apply a thick coat on the surface.

9. How Combining Colors can affect the Final Finish?

  • Combine the acrylic paints with gesso (primer) for a matte and opaque finish on coloured glass blocks. You can achieve a canvas-like look on a piece of flat glass with this paint, while you can also paint bottles, glasses, and other odd-shaped glass pieces.
  • A stained-glass finish can be achieved by using a glass liner and water-based acrylics or glass paints. With the liner, draw outlines on the surface in the desired shapes then color these outlines with glass paint (transparent). This will give a stained-glass finish. (See What three colors look best together?)

10. Where can you do Glass Paintings?

Glass blocks in the bathroom.

You can use various glass items in your house to start with. (See Why is Blackboard Green?)

  • Blocks in doors and windows.
  • Christmas Ornaments.
  • Coasters.
  • Flower Vases.
  • Jars.
  • Pendants.
  • Wine glasses and bottles.
  • Window panes.

Now you got some information about coloured glass blocks and how glass painting with acrylic colours can be a beautiful piece of art. So it’s time you can also start your painting and can make something close to your heart and pleasing to the eyes. (See Who invented Paper and When?)

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