A couple of weeks ago I finished the new version of Creation. Just knowing where to start when capturing the awesome events of creation is always a challenge to the Bible artist. What makes it even harder is when you know that you've already illustrated it twice before, and each time you want to do a better job!
There are seven pictures in this set. This brings our total Bible picture count to 745.
Picture one illustrates the first two verses of Genesis ch 1. Picture two shows the creation of light on day one. (Not the sun, which wasn't created until day four). I remember hearing a lecture given many years ago by a professor from Jodrell Bank Space observatory. He explained how we know that light came before anything else. Mind blowing stuff! I wish I could remember all of what he said.
Picture 3, (above), depicts day two. Picture 4, (day three), shows when the land and all plant life appeared. Most artists show this scene taking place during the day. Because the sun was not created until the following day, I chose not to show a blue sky, but rather bathe this scene in the brilliant white light created on day one.
Picture 5, (Day four), shows the creation of the sun, moon and stars which presumably included the multitude of galaxies also. When we consider the immensity of our own solar system alone we have to join in with the psalmist and say "When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him..." Psalm 8:3-4.
Picture 6, (day five), is always a little tricky, and most artists (including myself) usually divide the canvas into two. The top half being sky, the bottom half water. It is the easiest way to show both birds and fish, but there is always the risk of your illustration looking like a page from an animal encyclopedia! (Which mine does!)
I noticed in DC Comic's 'The Bible' illustrated by Joe Kubert and Nestor Redondo, that they show the animals being created on day five, not day six, which is a pretty basic mistake. Other than that it's a very well thought out and well researched publication, and I love Nestor Redondo's art.
Picture 7, (day six), shows Adam and Eve with a selection of the animals. In my two previous versions of creation I have only shown Adam with the animals on day six because chapter two covers the creation of Eve. On reflection this was not correct as both Adam and Eve are mentioned at the end of Chapter one. Chapter two is like a recap. The Bible back-tracks in the story to look at the creation of Eve in more detail.
Any depictions of dinosaurs were rare until the end of the 19th century which explains why they don't appear in earlier Bible pictures of day six. I'm not sure when dinosaurs started to appear in Bible illustrations, possibly early to mid 20th century. Bible artists of today regularly add dinosaurs into their pictures, in fact they feature quite heavily in CEF'S curriculum.
I would like to close this post with a quote that I like from Dr. "Fritz" Schaefer, Professor of Chemistry and the director of the Center for Computational Quantum Chemistry at the University of Georgia. He said "The significance and joy in my science comes in the occasional moments of discovering something new and saying to myself, 'So that's how God did it!' My goal is to understand a little corner of God's plan."
To read Dr Schaefer's article 'Stephen Hawking, The Big Bang, and God' click here.
To see some stunning pictures of God's creation, click here!
The heavens declare the glory of God. Psalm 19:1