Quimper in Stained Glass

Whenever I visit a new city, one of my favorite pastimes is photographing stained glass in every church and cathedral I can find. Not the usual, “this is a really big wall of glass and look at all the beautiful colors” photos, but photos of the intricate details that are easily missed when taking in the window as a whole. Why do I do this? Sometimes to find inspiration for my own illustrations. Sometimes because I love the stories the glass portraits tell. Sometimes because they make me laugh. And sometimes, simply because I like the colors and shapes. Occasionally I neglect to take any photos of the entire window, and only realize this days later when sorting through my photos.

There were many beautiful, memorable things in Quimper. Long walks by the river with dramatic cloudscapes. Bustling outdoor markets. Getting caught in summer rainstorms. Translating various French menus and eating possibly the best salad of my life.1 Playing accordion with friends. And, of course, the stained glass.2

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And some experiences too recent to be immortalized in stained glass…

The cathedral ceiling.
The cathedral ceiling.
Mystery purple leaf-flowers.
Mystery purple leaf-flowers.
After the rainstorm.
After the rainstorm.
Erin counts her wealth while waiting for sandwiches.
Erin counts her wealth while waiting for sandwiches.
Erin's BLT, a birds-eye view.
Erin’s BLT, a birds-eye view.
Erin's second BLT.
Erin’s second BLT.
The first salad. Chicken, noodles, assorted vegetables, sesame dressing.
The first salad. Chicken, noodles, assorted vegetables, sesame dressing.
The second salad. Tabbouleh, cherry tomato, four kinds of cheese, eggs, fresh vegetables.
The second salad. Tabbouleh, cherry tomato, four kinds of cheese, eggs, fresh vegetables.
Hot chocolate for weary travelers. Note the homemade brownies.
Hot chocolate for weary travelers. Note the homemade brownies.
  1. At this cafe recommended to us by a friend. []
  2. We spent several hours in Cathédrale Saint-Corentin de Quimper, until most of the cathedral’s candles had burned down and Erin’s stomach began to rumble so loudly that it snapped me out of my stained glass reverie. []

2 Responses

  • Someone once told me to roll up paper and look through that rolled paper at paintings to really see the beautiful details that we miss when looking at the piece as a whole. That seems to be the view that you give us of the stained glass windows. Hot chocolate is a taste I well remember.

  • I love the stained glass best, especially the piscatoral one giving us the fisheye. But I wonder: Can you use your computer to eliminate those intrusive black lines? Rosa

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