Im writing because I would like to pursue a career in stained glass, but have found little information on how to proceed. Alittle about myself: Im 24, hold a bachelors in art, and have painting/drafting experience. Im willing to move almost anywhere in Canada (though British Columbia would be preferable)
Are employer's in stained glass looking for specific stained glass classes? Are their stained glass schools? What would I need to begin an apprenticeship? If anyone can speak from their own experience, or point me to an organization that can help, I would be very thankful.
Those are very good questions to be asking. I do not think you are going to get any definitive answers, because there are so many variables.
You can work independently, starting your own studio, where all the processes of starting a small business apply, as well as your particular skill set with glass, this might include selling supplies and teaching stained glass.
You may want to work for a larger studio, might be tricky with the economic down turn, the plus side is that you might get a far more varied experience than working on your own.
Then there is the artist tier, working commissions, shows and fostering gallery connections.
Most stained glass artists are captivated by the material, it is what seduces them into this line of work. If the medium doesn't really grab you, then working in a studio where you construct or install, might suit you better.
There are conferences where you can take a myriad of courses to improve your skill set. The AGG has a scholarship program for lengthier training. You'll need to source what classes you are interested in and be prepared to travel, then apply directly to the AGG to see if you qualify for the scholarship.
Locally in BC, keep your connections with the crafts and arts councils, keep drawing, and if you don't have computer design somewhere in your background, you might want to learn that.
Stained glass is a small niche in the world of careers. There are some great stained glass artists out there and reading about how they did it might influence you on your way. Good luck.
You might try contacting the de Brady studio in Victoria. They employ glass workers and give classes. Tell Dennis I sent you, it shouldn't cost you any extra.