Saturday, January 23, 2010

The Animal's Christmas - Terry Nelson

"The Animal's Christmas" - 7" x 9" acrylic and gold on paper.

I started out this painting to be a sort of naive, medieval style illumination to be used as a greeting card. I didn't like it at all so I set it aside after doing the drawing just before Christmas of 2008. I took it up again last year shortly after Christmas and forced myself to finish it. I intended to add more animals but I didn't. I put Our Lady in a burqa, and St. Joseph is dressed as a Franciscan. The dog is my dog Herman, from when I was really little - which explains why he is so big. The rabbit is Mrs. Rabitowitz, the cats are mine - Agnes and Celine, and the lamb is every little kid - the figures represent these, I should say. The ox and the ass are classic, albeit the three mice above Our Lady are not.

Overall, I'm disappointed with the piece. One excuse I have is that my eyesight is getting worse and sometimes I had to guess where to lay in a detail.  That is true.  Notice the pupil in Our Lady's eye and the smudge beneath Joseph's lower lip - you have to click on the image to see detail.  At least I can fix that stuff.
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Brother William OFM said...

Franciscans are known to have a special devotion to Joseph! (Because both Francis and Joseph are not priests). Francis might have been a deacon and Joseph isn't. That's why St Joseph is a kind of patron saint for all lay brothers.

Terry Nelson said...

Br. William, nice to hear from you. You know I'm a 3rd Order Franciscan, right?

3puddytats said...


I too have approached the age where my eyes are starting to fail me for close work...I now carry readers everywhere, and stronger magnifying glasses for my rosary work. Some day are better and some days are worse..So far my coworkers have been most kind :)

I'm a 3rd Order Discalced Carmelite :) Lots of prayerful people around..


Dawn said...

That's beautiful! Smudge or not.

Daniel said...

Terry — I love your work and your blogs, although I feel a bit schizophrenic hopping between the two, not knowing where to comment on what. (Consequently I lurk, not leaving comments anywhere, until now.) Your sensibilities in this little piece are gorgeous. And your other artwork is just as compelling if not a bit surrealistic and other-worldly. Nice work!

Terry Nelson said...

Dawn - thanks very much - I fixed the smudges.

Daniel - many thanks - I'm happy you lurk!