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Dear reader,

Although winter's been late in arriving this year in Conestoga, after last weekend's snow-storms, everything is white and new outside. Here in the studio, January in the studio also feels like a blank canvas as the year ahead is beginning to unfold.

The change of season is enjoyed by everyone here in different ways. For myself, it's a chance to hike in a landscape where the trees creak in the cold. While, for my son, it's a chance to be creative (as demonstrated in his solution to losing the chicken-door latch stick in the snow ...).
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Thanks to the many people who support the studio in prayer, purchasing prints, giving financial support and commissioning new works, the studio is set to continue as a full-time endeavour this year. Looking ahead for 2020, we're excited about what's in store for the studio. —Symeon

The Conestoga Iconographic Studio
"A Vision of Heaven from the Village of Conestoga"

UPDATES

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NEW ICONS UNDERWAY

Several significant icons have been commissioned from the studio for 2020. Three of these are festival icons (icons of events from the life of Christ or the working of the Holy Spirit). While traditional portrait icons invite us to connect with the saints in our prayers, these new festival icons will encourage us to worship amid a world remade (in what Christ refers to as the Kingdom of Heaven). In festival icons, we see the world complete, whole, and holy as we meditate on the eternal reality within historical events.

The composition of such works is also far more complicated than a portrait icon and, in many cases, more diverse in its historical rendering. In beginning to prepare the sketches, I've been amazed by this in traditional examples. I'm looking forward to sharing some of this in writing, along with images of the finished icons, as the work progresses.

LOCAL COLOUR PIGMENTS

Late in 2019, the studio made available woad seeds to anyone who wanted them. The response was great, and we ended up shipping little envelops of seeds as far away as Spain. Finding inspiration in the local land continues to be a big part of the studio here in Conestoga, and the chance to share something of the experience is exciting. As spring, summer, and fall come this year, we're looking forward to being part of this new community of local colour enthusiasts as they plant, tend, and harvest indigo blue this year.

And, in case you missed it, you should check out the short video that my daughter and I made of how to plant woad seeds: www.conestogaicons.com/how-to-plant-woad-seed.
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NEW FINE ART PRINTS

The response to the studio's prints continues to be very good. These fine art prints are finding a place in homes and churches all around the world. And, many of the stories we've heard about them are lovely.

This month the studio received its first set of 12x15" (30.5 by 38cm) prints of Christ the Almighty, Mary the Guide and Christ the King of Glory. This is the largest size that we can currently offer, and at this scale, they embody a significant presence. To share that experience, we're offering both as a set until the end of January. While we usually ask $150 US per print, until the end of this month, each of these three is being offered for $120 US.

If interested, you can find out more here: www.conestogaicons.com/sales.
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2020 ICON PAINTING WORKSHOP

Last year we had the opportunity to have an icon painting workshop at the Sisterhood of Saint John the Divine in Toronto. As those who attended can attest, it was was a wonderful time as we worked and prayed together. Currently, there are still seats available for this year's workshop.

To find out more and reserve your place, click here: www.conestogaicons.com/toronto-icon-painting-workshop-2020.
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