The photo that inspired my painting
A few years ago, I snapped this photo of a good friend I had the pleasure of working with while living in Philadelphia. She is one of the kindest and smartest people I have ever met. (She was reading books by age three.)
Her photo reminded me of many of the iconographic paintings from my art history classes at Tyler School of Art. The ones painted by artists much greater than I will ever be of the virgin Mary holding her baby Jesus. It was the way she looked at my son and the way her hands were posed. It was also the way he was so peaceful in her lap (he was not a peaceful baby and rarely sat still for anyone.)
Ever since I saw the image, I've been wanting to paint it. So, when I decided to paint The First Noel, I asked her if I could use this photo as my model.
Above is the photograph and the beginning drawing, and below is the final piece. You can click the image below for more detailed views. Thank you, Nadia, for your friendship and your permission. Merry Christmas to us, every one!