I took a week-long seminar in icon writing this past week in Dallas TX. Our teacher Fr. Elias led about 20 students through all the steps of the icon writing process. Many people refer to "writing" icons as opposed to "painting" them. I found icons quite difficult since they are more stylized and less realistic looking - also I have never been one to keep inside of lines and use smooth areas of color. But the challenge was a good one and it is so nice to have somthing beautiful and holy to share with my family and friends now that I am home. There is quite alot of symbolism in this picture but I won't go into all of it now. The prayer around the border is the 'Our Father' in Latin. If you have questions though please feel free to ask.