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Rayyan Center: Exploring Islamic Illumination

January 27 @ 10:00 - February 4 @ 12:00


Registrations are closed, thank you very much for your interest.

Rayyan Center: Exploring Islamic Illumination

The Exploring Islamic Illumination course is four days long. It introduces the student to an awareness of the world of Islamic manuscript illumination, also known as Tezhip, and the discipline required to learn this beautiful art form.

General Info:

Subject: Islamic Illumination
Course Format: Online
Dates: Jan 27-28 and February 3-4, 2024
Time: 3-5 PM
Instructor: Farzana Razzaque Hoca
Location: Rayyan Center 46441 Five Mile Rd Plymouth, MI 48170
Age Requirements:  13+
Course Price: $109


Tezhip is the Turkish word meaning “ornamenting with gold” and represents the Ottoman tradition of beautifying calligraphy. Renowned professor of Tezhip, Dr. Çiçek Derman, once said, “If the aim of the Hattat (calligrapher) is to write the Holy Qur’an in his best handwriting, the Tezhip artist aims to illuminate it to express what is in their heart.”

This course provides a hands-on exploration of the art of Tezhip, focusing on both its history and practical techniques. Students will start with a brief overview of Tezhip history and styles. They will then dive into the essential elements and techniques for crafting patterns, applying these skills to create their own designs. The course also introduces influential Tezhip pioneers and contemporary artists.

A key part of the course is guiding students through the entire process of creating a Tezhip artwork, from constructing and transferring the pattern to the final painting. By the end, students will have a well-rounded understanding of Tezhip, blending theory with practical skills.

Exploring Islamic Illumination

Required Materials (All Materials Included):

  • Gouache/Watercolor Paint Set -12 colors minimum (Alternative- color pencils/watercolor brush pens)
  • Gold paint (gouache/Coliro Finetec pearl colors/Kuretake Gansai Tambi (Alternative – color pencils)
  • Miniature Painting brushes – Sizes 0 and 000 (only required if using paints)
  • Mechanical Pencil (Alternative: #2 or HB pencil)
  • 4B pencil
  • Tracing paper
  • Watercolor paper 300 gsm hot or cold press smooth paper or tezhip ahar paper (Alternative: printer paper if using color pencils)
  • Eraser
  • Ruler
  • Compass
  • Disposable cup and plastic plate or paint well palette (only required if using paints)

General Curriculum

  • DAY 1: Introduction and history of Tezhip. Overview of Tezhip.  Warm-up exercises. Constructing leaves (Yaprak), spirals, and flowers (Goncagul and Penc)
  • DAY 2: Masters of Tezhip in the past and present. Constructing a simple pattern
  • DAY 3: Completing a pattern (painting and contouring)
  • DAY 4: Completing a pattern and adding the final touches (painting, contouring, embossing)


Farzana Razzaque

Farzana Razzaque Hoca has been studying calligraphy and tezhip for over five years. She has received her ijaza, the permission to teach the Thuluth and Naskh scripts in the Ottoman tradition, from her teachers Master Calligraphers Haji Noor Deen Hoca and Ahmet Kutluhan Hoca.

Farzana is also in advanced studies in tezhip, the art of illumination, with Master Tezhip Artists Fatma Ulusoy Sirajuddin Hoca and Ayse Gulcan Ozbalak. The term “Hoca” (pronounced Hoja) is a Turkish word for “Shaikh” used to address the teacher as a form of respect.

Calligraphy and Manuscript Illumination & Program Director

Frequently Asked Questions

Where will the program take place?

The program will be held at Rayyan Center, located at 46441 Five Mile Rd, Plymouth, MI 48170.

What are the dates and times for the program?

The course is scheduled for Jan 27-28 and February 3-4, 2024, from 3-5 PM.

Who is the instructor for the course?

The course will be instructed by Farzana Razzaque Hoca, who has over five years of experience in studying calligraphy and tezhip.

What is the age requirement for participants?

Participants must be 13 years or older to enroll in the course.


January 27 @ 10:00
February 4 @ 12:00
Event Category:


.Deen Arts Foundation