My lovely client in Northern Ireland asked for a Holy Family a bit windswept and shocked by the whole experience of the Nativity! In my understanding this very Catholic feast, celebrated on 31st December, makes important reference to the family of the Holy Trinity and the reciprocal bonds of divine love, so I decided rather to go for slightly careworn and perhaps anticipating pain. In the end I worked without reference to any prototype icon, as I find most of them horribly sentimental and inappropriate to the cosmic grandeur of the underlying meanings. So I have drawn Jesus not as a baby but as Christ Emmanuel with arms outstretched in a crucifixion/embracing pose. The three intersecting haloes extending into the borders are also intentionally symbolic.
The view from my desk
Current work, places and events, art travel, and interesting snippets about Christian icons, medieval art, manuscript illumination, egg tempera , gilding, technique and materials.