Fagin practices the ancient art of manuscript illumination. In western tradition, an illuminated manuscript is one in which the handwritten or printed text is enhanced by the addition of decorated initials, borders, or illustrations. Technically speaking, illumination (also called gilding), refers to the application of gold leaf onto vellum or paper. However, illumination has come to be understood as a genre of art.
One of Amy's specialties is the ceremonial art of the ketubah (marriage contract) originated in early Jewish history as one of the first written documents required by Jewish law. Ornate and personalized, a couple's ketubah is hung prominently in the home as a daily reminder of their vows and their responsibilities to each other.
Amy will offer half-hour presentations throughout the day, demonstrating a variety of techniques that the manuscript illuminator uses to bring attention to the page: illuminating, calligraphy, and ornamental painting. All of these techniques date back to the early days of book arts.
An "illumination station" will also be set up in Amy's tent for young festival goers. Visitors are invited to sit down and decorate their very own illuminated manuscript, by coloring in an outlined design of one of Amy's illuminated manuscript creations.