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Byzantine Icon Painting


About the Course

In this year’s class, Deacon Nikita Andrejev will guide participants through the process of drawing and painting a forward-facing, shoulder-height female saint. After studying classical images from a variety of sources, each participant will choose and sketch a particular female saint. The design will then be painted on traditional gessoed icon boards in the liquid egg tempera technique of the Prosopon School. There will be no gilding offered in this class.

The class will work with a front-facing female face. Participants will first analyse proportions and then shape and refine a classical iconic face, learning to work with the underlying geometry of the face, focusing on axes, arches, ovals and other patterns. There will be time to practice drawing each element and feature of the face. During the painting of the icon, the enlarged shoulder-length bust will give ample opportunity to practice sculpting form with light, honing the perfect relationship of light and shadow and fine-tuning the Prosopon School “floating method.” Participants will work towards creating a meaningful expression of the face of the saint. The process is fully accessible for absolute beginners, but returning participants will appreciate the deeper insights into the drawing and painting of a larger-size, shoulder-length icon. As always, theological considerations revealing the meaning of the icon and its techniques will be offered.

Women saints are most often shown in the Byzantine style wearing a hood or head covering. Examples are Mary the Mother of God, St. Mary Magdalene, St. Anna, St. Elizabeth and nuns. The choice of subject will be from among this type of female saint. The instructor will bring examples and prototypes to the class, but returning participants are encouraged to think about a subject that resonates with them and collect a few good ancient prototypes of icons or frescoes of a saint for general reference. Eastern saints or Western saints from the first millennium (pre-Schism) that resonate with you and are depicted in the above-mentioned manner are welcome. The drawing and icon you will make will follow the classical Russian Byzantine style as interpreted by the Prosopon School, but the end result will be unique.

*Covid-19 Notice – We are open and have implemented a Safety Protocol in order to welcome you to a secure venue following recommended government guidelines (COVID Risk Assessment). Head to our website to find out more. see 'View course organiser's website' link above.

If you will be redeeming a CraftCourses gift voucher on this course, the voucher code must be provided at the point of booking.

What's included in the price?

Materials are provided.

Residential options are fully inclusive with all meals provided. Non-residential options include suppers, lunches and all refreshments and exclude B&B.

Non-Residential £660
Residential Single £940


Bookings Team at Hawkwood
Painswick Old Road

Suitable for

  • Accommodation offered
  • Adults
  • Intermediate level
  • Residential
  • Seniors
  • Suitable for beginners
  • UK Holiday

Available as a gift

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6 days (4:00pm to 4:00pm)

Next available date

23rd November 2020

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