Birth of a Masterpiece – Beginning of Forever

Writing in Pure Gold - Egg Tempera Painting - Elena Baranoff - Elena Vladimir Baranoff - Elena V. Baranoff - Copyright 2014

By the hand of the artist a story of creation is written in pure gold.

Nine years ago I began creating the dearest artwork of my life, a portrait of my daughter Anastasia.

Final brushstrokes are now being applied, announcing the end of this remarkably exciting, meaningful adventure, and symbolize the beginning of a new journey.

Much can be said about this expressive, double-sided artwork. But more about that soon to come....

"Icon Paintings By Palekh Master Elena Vladimir Baranoff" Short Film - Egg Tempera With 24 ct. Gold

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Elena Vladimir Baranoff holding her icon Holy Trinity

Over the years I have painted icon paintings in the ancient medium of egg tempera and 24ct. gold and have created a short film “Icon Paintings By Elena Vladimir Baranoff” featuring three icons painted by me which are housed in prominent collections in America.

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Our Lady of Vladimir Icon

Our Lady of Vladimir is one of the treasures of ancient painting of Byzantine iconography. The Holy Virgin is depicted in the moment when the baby Jesus is leaning towards her cheek and embracing her by the neck with the left hand. Full of motherly tenderness and sorrow foreseeing his future the Holy Mother of God bends toward the Christ child. The icon awakens the most deep and kind feelings.

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Saint John The Baptist Icon

Saint John The Baptist is a traditional icon of the ancient Russian style of icon painting depicting the figure of Saint John centrally positioned and in full length, surrounded by miniature scenes from the life of the Saint, forming a harmonious composition.

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Holy Trinity Icon

Holy Trinity is one of the most revered and beloved holy icons in the history of Orthodox Christianity in Russia. The icon is the creation of 15th century Russian icon painter Andrei Rublev, and is the symbol of spiritual unity, love and peace.

Blue Cockerel and Feathered Friends - A London Summer Sketch

On warm London summer days, when the sun shines through the sprawling trees it is a real treat to stroll down the footpaths of St. James's Park, the emerald gem of the bustling city. What a community of swans, pelicans, ducks, ducklings, pigeons, squirrels, and other feathered and furry creatures inhabit these beautiful woods and waters, living out their celebrity lives under the constant camera flashes and video reportage of tourists. Beloved by all, they are truly star citizens of the capital.    

St. James's Park London - Elena V. Baranoff -  Master Elena Baranoff - Artist Elena Baranoff - Fine Artist Elena V. Baranoff

Bending its exquisite long neck a thoughtful white swan 
floats over quivering waters of the St. James's Park Lake

Elena Baranoff - Elena V. Baranoff - London - St Jame's Park London - London Cityscapes

Later on holding an official audience 
and press call with its adoring public

It can surely be said that our feathered friends are not only entertaining in the park but making an exciting lapis lazuli splash on one of the main squares in the city. An exceptionally blue fiberglass cockerel stands up high above Trafalgar Square.

London Cityscapes - London Trafalgar Square - Trafalgar Square

The Blue Cockerel is indeed the center of attention

I am so surprised to see roosters are everywhere in London. In my previous entry I wrote about a wonderful rooster weather vane I encountered while wondering down a city street this Spring. And now just recently I discovered the most spectacular copper and wrought iron weathercock at The Victoria and Albert Museum in their metalwork collection. According to the museum description, weather vane roosters were very popular in England before the 11th century and fashion for them was exclusively English, only much later becoming used in other parts of Europe.

A London Rooster Weather Vane

Rooster Weather Vane - Elena Baranoff - Artist Elena Baranoff - Elena V. Baranoff - A London Rooster Weather Vane

An iron rooster sits up high, looks out far 
London, April 2013

Every time I travel to London, I follow an old tradition of mine by strolling down the sleeping city streets in the morning. At such early hours of the day London grants new discoveries. This time, quite unexpectedly, I found a fantastic rooster perched on a spire of an old red brick building. I was truly enchanted and delighted by such a meeting. 

Long ago, an iron master made this rooster weather vane and placed it high on the roof of the London building, gifting it to the world. Beauty is all around us, in the smallest of details, we only have to look closely to see the wonders of the world.   

A Photo From My Personal Collection

Elena Baranoff - Elena Vladimir Baranoff - Elena V. Baranoff Fine Artist - Fine Artist - Icon Painter - Miniature Painter - Egg Tempera Painter - Palekh Icon Painter

I am initiating a new addition to my fine art diary devoted to photographs from my personal collection. The first photograph is of me, age 16, taken just a few months before my fine art studies at Palekh Art College. 

My Recent Trip To Winter Wonderland

Elena Baranoff - Snow White Trees - Elena V. Baranoff - Artist Elena V. Baranoff - Master Elena V. Baranoff - Russian Landscape - Winter Landscape

A room with a beautiful view- a peaceful sight from my window

After sunny Southern California, which inspires my imagination with the vibrant color combinations of its landscapes, reminding me of hues on the palette of Renaissance painters, from this part of the world where even in the winter months of the year sunshine and warmth is in abundance, I travel to the other side of our globe to snowy-crystal, wintry Russia.

Following a lengthy flight and landing in Moscow airport, I journey for hours through the night down a wide icy road, surrounded by vast fields and enchanting forest all dressed in white, to a city where I was born and where my loving family always waits for me.

Elena Baranoff - Snow and Birds - Elena Vladimir Baranoff - Russian Winter Lanscape -  Artist Elena V. Baranoff - Master Elena Baranoff - Elena V. Baranoff Trip To Russia

It is not possible not be inspired by such a sight, where from one snowy branch 
to another plump birds, dressed in their red and yellow coats, happily hop about.

Tall trees of the mighty yet romantically poetic Russian forest, ornamenting the edge of the winding road, bend down their long branches under the weight of sugar-white snow twinkling in the moonlight, against a backdrop of spinning snowflakes in the frosty air. A miraculous vision.     

Out of sheer amazement the heart skips a beat and it seems as though a magical world of Russian fairy tales could appear before my very eyes if I where to step into the forest. The nature of Russia is a true beauty.

Elena Baranoff - Enchanting Crystal Icicles - Elena V. Baranoff Visit To Russia - Master Elena Baranoff in Russia - Artist Elena Baranoff  Russian Visit

Icicles, the creation of nature itself, so fragile in their heavenly beauty, 
hang like crystal chandelier ornaments.

A Decorative Cabinet For Fine Art Pigments

Elena Baranoff - Artist Elena Baranoff - Elena V. Baranoff - Decorative Cabinet For Fine Art Pigments - Cabinet For Egg Tempera Pigments - Artist Elena V. Baranoff - Master Elena Baranoff

The majestically beautiful cabinet handmade and painted by talented Chinese craftsmen

At the close of last year, in one of my beloved local boutiques, where it is possible to lose yourself in time, taken in by unique pieces of furniture brought together from all corners of the globe, I discovered an absolutely astonishing cabinet for my fine art studio.
Captivating with its vibrant colors, majestic dragons and decorative florals, all hand painted by masters of distant and exotic Asia, the antique looking cabinet charmed me from the moment of our first meeting.  

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A fragment of the decorative ornamentation hand painted in oil by talented Chinese craftsmen

It was hard to believe that its ornamented doors were attached without a single metal hinge, moving on the most unique wood rails as they opened and closed. The deep dark wood released an aromatic scent. It was simply impossible not to make an acquisition. 

Elena Vladimir Baranoff - Elena Baranoff - Elena V. Baranoff - Fine Art Pigments In Decorative Cabinet - Artist Elena Vladimir Baranoff - Master Elena V. Baranoff - Elena Vladimir Artist

Just a few of the numerous jars with dry pigments placed inside the treasure cabinet 
especially acquired for their keeping

This magical piece of furniture was a true find and an ideal treasure cabinet for my collection of fine art pigments, including lapis lazuli, malachite and other stones ground into fine powder, which I use to make egg tempera for my paintings. The cabinet is a harmonious addition to the interior of my fine art studio.

Sweet Festivities In The Fine Art Studio

Elena V. Baranoff © 2012 - Christmas Hot Cocoa With Marshmallow And Gingerbread Cookie - Fine Artist Elena Baranoff - Artist Elena Baranoff - Master Elena Baranoff

This German gingerbread cookie reminds me so much 
of a Russian “pryanik” cookie from my childhood.
A cup of hot chocolate with a melted marshmallow and dark chocolate sprinkles.

It’s the season for hot cocoa, gingerbread cookies, toasted marshmallows, festive tea parties and being merry! The holiday season is in full swing in my fine art studio, where guests are treated to a cup of hot chocolate or sit-down tea with delicious candy, pastries, sandwiches and other scrumptious desserts. 
Joy to all! 

Elena V. Baranoff © 2012 - Afternoon Holiday Tea In The Fine Art Studio - Elena Baranoff - Afternoon Tea for Fine Art Collectors - Art Collectors - Artist Elena V. Baranoff - Master Elena Baranoff - Art Collectors
A table set for a tea celebration