Saint Veronica, patron saint of army photographers

As the patron saint of photographers and film directors, Saint Veronica is also that of the French army’s communication and audiovisual protection division, ECPAD.

It was during the First World War that the Army first started to produce photographs and films to counter enemy propaganda.

Saint Veronica

Saint Veronica is always depicted with the veil bearing the image of the Holy Face.

It trained war photographers who were sent as close as possible to combat zones and it set up the first cinematographic department whose aims were to support communication, build memory archives and provide training. ECPAD, whose offices are in Ivry Fort, stems from various services set up in the twentieth century.

The name Veronica means the “real image” because, according to tradition, an image of the face of Christ was impressed on the veil she used to wipe his face when he was carrying the cross.

Every year on 4 February, ECPAD organises an event aimed at strengthening the bonds between its members.

Une dizaine d’autres saints patrons existent

Photo credit: akg-images / Archives CDA / St-Genès

For further information...

Article : ECPAD, Histoire du cinéma des armées [on-line], available on

Article : Violaine Challéat, Le cinéma au service de la défense, 1915-2008, Revue historique des armées [on-line], 252 | 2008, 2008, available on :