Icon (from the Greek - image) is a Christian religious image of a saint or an event from sacred texts, designed for individual or church prayer and liturgical use. Unlike pre-Christian (Pagan) idols, icons must not be regarded as images of the Deity, but as symbols that allow spiritual communion with the archetype. As a rule, traditional Eastern Orthodox icons strictly follow models and cannons, established by Byzantine art. There is a rich history and elaborate religious symbolism associated with icons. Eastern Orthodox icons are painted using egg tempera on specially prepared wooden panels, and gold leaf is frequently used for halos and background areas (the sky, for example).