"The priest in my village, Plikati of Ioannina, used to paint icons. I made a Virgin Mary with his help, which I later showed to my hagiography teacher Nikos Stratoulis, in Athens. When he saw it he asked me: What do you want to be, a painter or a hagiographer? I was confused; I didn't know what to answer. What if he didn’t like my answer and told me to take a hike? I told him that I wanted to become a hagiographer in order to please him. He looked at me with a satisfied look and told me: Come again on Monday and wear some old trousers, so you don’t get dirty on the scaffold. Who knows where I would be now, if I had told him I want to be a painter".