01 January 2008

Iconography Project 1 for Early 2008

Last year I wrote my first icon, one of Christ the Teacher. I am still finishing it off in a few respects, but it is generally complete. I attempted to write an icon of the God-bearer, but I chose too small a scale. While I will endeavor to complete it, my hands aren't quite in the shape to finish such a small icon (about 6 inches square).

So, after reviewing my first icon and determining my overall desire for my iconography, I have elected to begin my first iconography project of the new year, a different version of Christ. The image that accompanies this post is my master.

I plan to post photographs of the iconography step-by-step to share with readers the different elements that go into writing an icon.

The first step is nearly complete, so... while it will be a pretty plain (read boring) picture, the next post you will see on this topic will be of the completed background of the icon.

While I mainly employ the Coptic style of Iconography, the Syriac/Rabulla manuscripts have very vivid background colors that sometimes the Coptic icons lack. So the finished icon will be written in a hybrid Syro-Coptic style.

Icons don't just get painted overnight. In fact, while they are illumined with paints, an icon is written during times of intense prayer and reflection.

I hope to finish the background this week, and to get the outline drawn in by the end of the weekend. The next step will be to lay in underpaint for extremely dark features, followed by the main paints. I hope to have this complete before Lent begins. I then plan to do the detail work (hair, eyes, hands, feet, folds of clothing, shading, etc) during Lent, with the goal of presenting it for blessing at Pascha.

Stay tuned!


All original material (C) 2007-2010 by Father Robert Lyons.

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