Spring Iconography Workshop: Jonah
In this Iconography Workshop, students will complete an icon of the Holy Prophet Jonah in the traditional medium of egg tempera, gaining a foundation in the spirituality and artistic practices needed to continue in iconography, if desired. For students interested in a class with greater commitment, consider the year-long Iconography Apprenticeship, which can be taken alongside any 10-session Workshop such as this one.
The parallels between the Holy Prophet Jonah and Christ were significant to early Christians: Just as Christ was resurrected after three days in the tomb, Jonah seemed “dead” in the whale, only to be saved by God to bring His important message to Nineveh. Even from the Catacombs of Rome, where Christians held services and buried their dead in secret, many beautiful wall paintings and amazing statues of Jonah survive.
Each lesson will start with prayer, followed by a brief discussion and a warm-up technique exercise. The bulk of the class will be spent painting the icon- sometimes called writing the icon to stress the kinship with theology. Students will learn to “temper” the dry pigments with egg and apply the paint in each of the many stages of building up an iconographic face.
Since iconography is a living tradition, students will learn about the dynamic relationship between using historic models and understanding for themselves the aesthetic and theological principles of iconography. To this end, students must gain an understanding of composition, the iconographic “style” as it manifests in facial features, etc., and how to “draw on the right side of the brain.” All of these tasks will be broken down into small, structured steps and are manageable for people of almost all ages and abilities.
● No prior artistic experience is expected or required.
● This class requires students to have two webcams and to purchase various art materials and gather household materials. (Please see the Course Materials.)
● Because we will need all 10 sessions for painting the icon, a video will be sent out ahead of time that will guide you through pre-mixing some important dry pigment colors, making homemade transfer paper, and making egg emulsion. This must be completed before the first day of class.
● In order to stay on schedule and for students to get the most out of the course, students will be assigned c. 30- 60 minutes of homework after each class. The straightforward assignments will be either a repeat or completion of what was done in class.
● Most importantly, before each live class session, students must set up their work space with all their materials, including the ones from home (water jar, paper towels, etc.).
● Classes at Saint Raphael are meant to be taken live, so students should do their best to attend every session. In extenuating circumstances, you can ask for a recording. It will be messaged to you by the instructor by the morning following class.
Please see the required course materials here.
*Required materials are not included in the purchase of the course.
Randi Maria Sider-Rose began painting icons over 20 years ago when she was able to travel to learn from different iconography teachers across the country. Since then, she has married Michael Sider-Rose and completed an MDiv at the University of Chicago Divinity School. As well as taking commissions from churches and individuals, Mrs. Sider-Rose loves to walk with students on the journey of learning to see better and more intentionally, using this “prayer of the hands” to grow in holiness, with God’s grace. Homeschooling her four children in an urban fixer-upper strewn with books, art projects, and Legos helps keep the whole operation real.
Mrs. Sider-Rose and her family attend Saint Moses the Black Orthodox Mission Church in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where she has been blessed by His Grace Bishop Thomas to serve in the ministry of iconography.
For more information about Mrs. Sider-Rose’s process, please visit her website at www.immanuelicons.org.
Computer: You will need a stable, reliable computer, running with processor with a speed of 1 Ghz or better on one of the following operating systems: Mac OS X with MacOS 10.6 (Snow Leopard) or later; Windows 8, 7, Vista (with SP1 or later), or XP (with SP3 or later). We do NOT recommending using an iPad or other tablet for joining classes. An inexpensive laptop or netbook would be much better solutions, as they enable you to plug an Ethernet cable directly into your computer. Please note that Chromebooks are allowed but not preferred, as they do not support certain features of the Zoom video conference software such as breakout sessions and annotation, which may be used by our teachers for class activities.
High-Speed Internet Connection: You will also need access to high-speed Internet, preferably accessible via Ethernet cable right into your computer. Using Wi-Fi may work, but will not guarantee you the optimal use of your bandwidth. The faster your Internet, the better. We recommend using a connection with an download/upload speed of 5/1Mbps or better. You can test your Internet connection here.
Headset: We recommend using a headset rather than a built-in microphone and speakers. Using a headset reduces the level of background noise heard by the entire class.
Headset Recommendations: USB | 3.5mm
Zoom: We use a web conferencing software called Zoom for our classes, which enables students and teachers to gather from around the globe face to face in real time. Zoom is free to download and easy to use.
To download Zoom:
- Visit zoom.us/download.
- Click to download the first option listed, Zoom Client for Meetings.
- Open and run the installer on your computer.
- In August, students will be provided with instructions and a link for joining their particular class.
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This registration will be finalized when the student's placement assessment has been returned by the course instructor with placement confirmation.