Our Lady of Perpetual Help Iconography Course

March 7th, 2017 by

Join us for a four-day course on the Icon of the Lady of Perpetual Help done in Traditional egg tempera.  We will make a 11 x 14 “ image on a Masonite board or you can order a Traditional wood board with raised edges for $120.00.  Must be ordered 3 weeks before course.

The course meets two weekends:

May 19, 20 and 26, 27

Time: 10-4 every day   

Costs: $400

$50 non-refundable deposit to hold your spot which will go toward the cost of the Course.

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ABOUT THE COURSE: This course will be taught in the Traditional method of dark to light, using egg tempera.   It is designed for those who have painted an icon previously. Due to time constraints there will be no gilding. Classes will be six hours each day (except Sunday), including a lunch break. Please bring your own lunch (or you can buy it here-several restaurants). We will be discussing the historical development and meaning of this icon during the class.

BOARDS: For this course the student will use the clay flat-panel board (provided in cost).  Or the students may request a traditional prepared wood board but it will be an additional $115.00, due at the time of registration. Must request a board no later than 2 weeks before course.


WHAT TO BRING: pencil, eraser, rinse jar, palette, ruler, scissors, drafting compass (all optional)

BRUSHES: One water color wash brush: very fluffy, at least 1ʺ wide.

One tool or stipple brush or a beat-up brush for mixing.

One small watercolor script: #1 or #2

Several larger brushes for blending: rounds #2 or #3  (All these can be bought at the course)

MAKE-UPS: Every day of instruction presupposes knowledge of the days that precede it, so every class is required to proceed to the next one. If you need to miss one of the painting days toward the end of a course, that time can be made up by appointment on another Friday or Saturday.  If the student does not finish by the end of the course they can schedule a time to come in and finish.


Colette Kalvesmaki,  Founder and Director of the Center for Byzantine Material Arts, Iconographer, Art Restorer.

Colette M. Kalvesmaki is trained in the tradition of Byzantine-Russian iconography.  She uses traditional materials such as egg tempera, gold on fine woods for panel icons as well as fresco for wall finishes. She graduated with a BA in Classical Archaeology in 1989 from the University of California, Santa Barbara and worked as an archaeologist in America and Greece before returning to school to receive a Masters in Theology from St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary in 1993. She moved to Massachusetts to study intensively for three years under the renowned Russian iconographer Ksenia Pokrovsky. While in Boston, Colette was also trained as an art restorer with Treffler and Sons Art Restoration Studios and in recent years has trained in the Buon Fresco Academy of Wall Artistry, expanding her abilities to a variety of wall finishes.

Colette started The Center for Byzantine Material Arts in Virginia in 2014 and continues to paint, teach and lecture for various Churches, Museums and Universities.  Her work can be found in formal exhibits, churches and private collections in America and internationally.

For more information on Colette and her work, visit www.sacredpresence.com

Brushed with faith by Catholic News Service  —https://youtu.be/GeisvsUDle8

Iconography Private Lessons, Commissions, Intensive Courses and Open Saturdays!

January 17th, 2015 by

Private Lessons

Private lessons are $40 a lesson and includes all supplies for initial lessons. One can start with the making of the board or with the painting process. Gilding is not included until a later date and gold is not included in the price.

Raised boards can be bought at the wish of the student for later icons. Particulars are worked out with the instructor. The mediums are egg tempera, but can be in acrylic. The lessons follow a course much as the Traditional schools of old. This is a living Tradition and is important to us to carefully pass on the practice and theology of the icon.

The length of lessons depends on the ability of the students. The goal is to take privately until the instructor advises the student join the Open Saturdays. If the student wishes they can continue privately but are encouraged to work on their own and come with questions on our open Saturdays, which are listed on the calender web site.

All are welcome who can paint on their own to Open Saturdays.


We accept commissions and work usually in two payments. One when ordering and the second when it is finished. Prices vary accordingly. It’s best to visit the websites to choose a style. (see byzarts.com –Gallery of Artist page)

Intensive Courses

Intensive courses are open to anyone interested and are offered usually once a month. A deposit is necessary to hold your place. Cost and time depend largely on the difficulty of the icon. Check website for details.

Ask about our scholarship fund.

Open Saturdays

Open Saturdays – are walk in sessions for those who already know how to work (mostly) on their own but have a qustion or two, or for those who simply like to work with a group in a quite setting.  We start at 1pm on specially marked Saturdays.                Check our “Calender of Events” for days.

Cost $10.00.

Next Open Saturday-every Saturday in January!

Location -We are at the Monroe Street Arts Walk, 716 Monroe St. NE #7, Washington DC 20017.

Metro-Redline CUA/Brookline stop. We are a few yards away in the Monroe Street arts Walk.

Parking: Parking garage on 7th and Monroe or street parking.

Dates– they vary and it’s always good to drop an email before you come:  colette@byzarts.com