Byzantine Iconography Series 1: Drawing the Face
What you'll learn
- By the end of the course students will have learned the importance of line and rhythm in the Byzantine icon and will be able to draw the face in several poses.
- Draw the face in the frontal pose
- Draw the face in the dynamic frontal pose on curved axes
- Draw the ascetic and elderly faces and beards
- Draw the face in the reverential 3/4 pose
- Draw the face in the upward facing 3/4 pose
- Draw the face of the Infant Christ
- Pencil and paper.
Anyone wanting to learn Byzantine Iconography needs to lay the right foundation. Simply tracing old icons or jumping straight into painting ("by numbers") only builds a house of cards that will collapse. The foundation for being able to paint icons is learning to draw according to the Byzantine system. Once the foundation is laid (and practiced continually) it allows us to create within the iconographic tradition of the Orthodox Church and not simply "photocopy" old icons ( a practice that appeared in the 20th century and was never part of the tradition of the Church). In this first course on drawing icons we will start by learning the importance of line and how line is used to create the rhythm that brings icons to life. From there we will progress to drawing the face in several poses:
- The frontal pose ( and we will see why it is not used in Byzantine iconography)
- The dynamic frontal pose
- The dynamic frontal pose on curved axes
- Ascetic Faces and beards
- The reverential 3/4 pose
- The upward facing 3/4 pose
- and the face of the Infant Christ
We will study different types of faces in each pose (young face, woman's face, ascetic or elderly face) so we can see how each type of face is drawn in each pose.
Who this course is for:
- This course is aimed at beginners with no experience in Byzantine Iconography or those who who have learned by tracing icons and would like to learn to draw them.
Hello, I'm Julia. I'm a South African born byzantine iconographer with 16 years experience. I live and studied iconography in Greece with teachers including master iconographer George Kordis. I have also studied Theology and done post-graduate studies in Liturgics at the University of Athens.
So what are these iconography tutorials about? This is not a standard weekend iconography workshop where you simply learn to trace an icon and "paint-by-numbers". It was never the tradition of the Church to make "photocopies" of old icons, but sadly this modern "tradition" is destroying the creative tradition of the Church. Every period of iconography from the Comnene to the Paleologian periods to the Cretan School has it's own style within the Byzantine system of painting and the iconographic tradition of the Church. In these tutorials you will be introduced to the Byzantine system of painting and given tools that will allow you create within the tradition of the Church.
It cannot be emphasized enough how important it is for iconographers to learn to draw before starting to paint. That is why with these tutorials we will start by building the foundation by learning how to draw before we progress to painting icons.
The tutorials have subtitles for the deaf.