As an iconography artist and author, I use my brush and keyboard to fashion thought-provoking paintings and text to give icon art meaning.
I believe in a benevolent being, whether God, Spirit or Energy. This source has shaped and influenced all our material and spiritual reality. This God has shaped the land, sea, and all living things, including women and men. ‘Its’ timeless presence has affected and influenced all that we perceive..
In my opinion, I believe my modern icon art and Creativity develop the more I practice, and the more I meditate. I think this is true of all icon art. And you can perceive it just by studying icon art history. Art and creativity are essential for what it means to be human.
Our Art is our way of reconnecting with the Creator of our Universe.
Icon Art Is a Way of Telling God’s Story
Icon artists, poets, and writers have used their talents for centuries to depict the spirit, man, and the interaction we all feel. The ancient narratives portray the way God formed and shaped the world and how he has strategically planned our redemption.
So why should we give up this ancient Art of telling our story? Why should we simply chuck it out the window and instead use these computer-generated art forms that we call icon art download or free icon art. You cannot create art with the click of a button. It takes meditation, time and creation. Just as the supreme being created us.
So, shouldn’t we instead modernize it and bring out from the past the modernization of religious icon art through our own icon painting images? And at the same time, wouldn’t it be interesting to base this creativity on the old rules for painting in the religious icon style?
Understanding the nature of the story through my painted icons helps me see the message and meaning. Historical facts or biblical stories act as a springboard. The visual stories relate to spiritual truths through pictures and my icon art, so that the viewer is drawn into the painting and can create his or her own meditation and understanding of reality.
Icon art and design connect with the creative imagination within every one of us. Throughout history, this visual art or icon painting, has been one of the many ways of telling God’s story. From early Christian Art in the catacombs to modern icon paintings, all icon painters have a deep desire to tell God’s Story through their art.
Many years ago, I came across an ancient form of Christian Art called iconography. The Eastern Orthodox Church has an ancient tradition of painting icons using egg tempera. They use earth pigments and egg to create paintings that emanate spirit and narrate the meaning of God and the bible stories. The world iconography derives its name from the Greek word eikonos, which means image. Most icons represent important biblical characters like Mary, Jesus Christ, or varying Saints. In some cases, they also depict biblical scenes, parables, and Apostles from the Bible.
The painting technique enthralled me, and soon I saw that icon painting was a way to express my prayer and thoughts. The painted icon offers me a window into eternity. It is a reminder of the unfolding mystery found in spiritual life.
Let’s put icon painting in a modern context. Everyone knows how to open up an icon on the computer screen. In the same way, a painted icon opens a window, one that reminds us that we belong to another realm.
Modern icon painters use ancient icon painting techniques much the way ancient Christians used prayer, music, and liturgy. Iconography depicts religious truths and ideologies. Still, instead of using words, we use visual language and ancient painting rules to tell God’s truth through story.
MY Icon Painting Truth
It has been 35 years since I first laid eyes on that ancient painted icon. Today icons have made an important impact on my spiritual being. I paint them as an expression of my faith and a form of contemplation and prayer.
When I first began, I joined a growing community of modern women icon painters, I am not alone. Today, icons are found outside the Eastern Orthodox Church, and especially in the Episcopal church. Found in private homes, public places, museums,and retreat centers of all denominations icons are being celebrated and painted. Icon-painting workshops are being offered to parishioners to promote contemplation and prayer. So, in essence, painted icons, both modern and ancient, belong to all of us.
My next workshop is in Lewes Delaware. INFO here
HOW DOES THIS INFORMATION PERTAIN TO ME?
Here are three reasons for how icons can serve to connect us in relationship with the Greatest Artist of All.
1. Painted Icons Foster Creative Imagination
In the last century, we have made great technological advances. We have traveled to outer space. We have brought about a change in the medical field, and we have witnessed the growth of the computer industry. However, amid these immense changes, we have also lost our reverence for something greater than ourselves. Painted icons are a powerful reminder to slow down. We contemplate who we are spiritually, on the goodness of humanity, angels, and God. Painting and contemplating this spirituality in icons helps us recover our imagination and our creative spirit.
2. Painting in This Ancient Tradition Helps Us Pray and Worship
We pray icons into existence, the painting process helps us enter into a worshipful state of mind. Icons aid our prayers and create sacred spaces where we can commune with God.
3. Icon Paintings Remind Us that We All Belong to The One Spirit
Painted icons remind us that we belong to a collective. We are part of a larger family with roots that go back to the beginning of humankind. Too often, as artists, we forget about our rich history of thousands of years. Yet, even the ancient icons prompt the soul to new insights. All be it, we are connected to artists from the past, the present and to humanity throughout the world.
In painting these rich icons, I have realized that I am a part of a larger whole. My creative spirit is connected to the roots of a group of artists who based their faith and their beliefs in God.
In The End…telling God’s story
The icon painting process provides a space for a mystical encounter between the viewer and the story of God. Contemplation opens the mind to the appearance of angels, Christ’s consciousness, or messages from the Saints. Mystery awakens the heart and soul of both the icon painter and the viewer and establishes a place of prayer. Spirit offers a window where the viewer can participate in the presence of the divine.
Join our Group on FACEBOOK Conversations about Prayer and Iconography.