Sunday, April 6, 2008
Icon Painting Workshop
I had the privilege of participating in an icon painting workshop over the past week. It was organized by Iconophile and taught by Philip Davydov and Olga Shalamova from St Petersburg and it was amazing. We used egg tempera with natural pigments including such romatic colours as lapis lazuli, cinnabar, terre-verte and hematite complete with all their toxic lead and mercury properties. We ground these powdered pigments with egg yolk by hand with pretty little morters and pestles and then applied them in many thin layers onto our icon. We learned varnish and water gilding and how to apply gold leaf using garlic juice and bread! I found the egg tempera difficult but would like to keep trying until it becomes as familiar to me as acrylic. I was down at Daniel Smith today buying black, white, and ochre to practice with. Wish me luck.