It was rather difficult for Vasiliev to portray Mikula Selyaninovich, an ordinary rural peasant-hero, without indicating his somewhat divine beginning. Before painting, he spent time in the archive so that the picture did not have any unreliable details.
The painting "Volga and Mikula" was created after Vasiliev completed all the works, which depicted the images of all the heroes from the entourage of Prince Vladimir. Now the artist needed to write a work that would be filled from the beginning to the end with a semantic load, thanks to which song-squad epics were sung. Thus, this canvas was filled with a large, but at this time simple meaning.
The painting depicts Mikula Selyaninovich, who, according to legend, was so huge and large that he could not be caught even by Svyatogor and Volga on a horse, despite the fact that Mikula walked. In his enormous image, in comparison with the hero, the meaning of a simple peasant peasant who works on his land, he plows it, then sows it, and if it is necessary to protect his land, he will defend himself.
The plowman Mikula is portrayed more, not only because of the phenomenal parameters that his mother earth awarded him, but also because without him, in fact, they would starve and be without food, all the same Russian heroes. Thus, not only the image of a hero was praised, but also an ordinary Russian peasant.
Volga, on horseback, has rather modest proportions compared to Mikula, his helmet resembles the dome of the Orthodox Church, and the red color of his cape, shield and spear are distinctive among the warriors who most often loved this color. The picture perfectly finishes a series of epic Russian epics, but the master does not stop there.
Chaliapin's Appearance Description