Today I have finally finished the project for the Icon museum in Kampen, the Netherlands. I was painting the composite Joan of Arc icon that would not only portray her but also some of the events and things associated with her.
The whole icon consists of central portrait painting which shows Joan of Arc in her armour with a halo above her head which is a common symbol of holiness in icons, 4 wood panels and 4 smaller canvases.
The panel on the left shows Joan’s banner and coat of arms. The panel on the right portrays her execution that took place in Rouen on 30 May 1431. The top panel has her name and the bottom one shows the panorama or Orleans, the city that was freed by her. There are also 4 decorative canvases with fleur de lis in the corners.
I’ve started working on the project as soon as I had the idea about Joan of Arc as a subject. 30*50 cm canvas seemed like a great starting point to which I could add side panels. As always, I started with a rough sketch on the canvas with burnt umber. Later on, when it dried I made the first layer in oils and decided about the size of the halo. When the second layer was finished I made a halo with gold leaf.
After the central image was done I made 4 panels out of wood and painted on them with oils. When the decorative small canvases were done I put the Icon together in a wooden frame and did the borders between panels.
The Icon was then wrapped and secured. Later on, I brought it to the Icon museum where it received a warm welcome. Now it will take part in a big exhibition of vita-icons.
You can know more about the Icon museum on it’s website.