Here’s an old favorite that was completed as a gift for a dear friend who has guided me spiritually. It’s the illustration of a soul won by God. The soul is like a deer, hunted, and pierced, in this case by the love of God. Then the hide of the deer, or soul, is stretched and scraped on a rack by the purifying travails of life in order to transform it into beautiful vellum. The vellum is taken and transformed: upon it is written the beautiful Word of God.
The idea came to me, and then one night, I couldn’t sleep, so I decided to get up and draw it. What you see here is the second draft of the picture.
The portion above is my favorite part of the picture.
I also like the simplicity of the friar’s face, and the fact that my travels heavily influenced this part. The round towers, into which the monks would scurry to avoid Viking raids, and the grey stone buildings of Glendalough in Ireland was the inspiration for the background. You can read more about the fascinating story of the round towers here.
I had the original painting scanned in order to duplicate it for gifts, but I lost the cd on which it was stored. I’ve been wishing I had it for sometime, for me to have a copy of personally, and also to be able to give it as a gift to someone. So, I decide to redo it. This time, I decided to frame the three pictures in romanesque arches, as the style that the Church was building in across much of Europe when illuminated books were coming into existence was romanesque.
A lot has been learned redoing this work, especially the habit of working slowly, carefully, in small chunks, instead of trying to do it all in one sitting. The sketch you see above is the result of about five days of 20-30minute sessions of drawing. Still need to work on the face and hand of the friar in that last part!
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#atomichabits #art #romanesque #ireland #travel #illuminatedcalligraphy #soulsearching