Brian Matthew Whirledge paints traditional Orthodox Byzantine icons and wall paintings for churches and homes. This blog showcases his work and artistic process in creating Orthodox icons. View his work and contact him at brianwhirledge.com
Saint Emperor Justinian the Great, 9x11", Acrylic and gold on panel
I just completed this icon of Saint Emperor Justinian the Great. It is based on a famous mosaic portrait in Ravenna, completed in AD 547, during his lifetime. Occasionally, I can reference photographs of more recent saints, but this was a real treat to work from a contemporary portrait. Saint Justinian made great contributions to the Church, including writing the Christological hymn "Only Begotten Son," which is still sung in the Orthodox Liturgy to this day. He also built the magnificent Agia Sophia church in Constantinople. The patron wanted me to include this hymn and the church in the icon.