Patris Corde - "With a Father's Heart"
"On December 8, 2020 Pope Francis published an Apostolic Letter Patris corde (With a Father’s Heart), commemorating the 150th anniversary of the declaration of Saint Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church. The Holy Father proclaimed a “Year of St Joseph”, running from December 8, 2020 to December 8, 2021."
To mark this occasion, Daniel was commissioned by St Anthony's Parish Wanniassa to create an oil painting of St Joseph to be hung in the parish church. The painting process is described in more detail below.
The first stage of this painting involved hours of research, sketching, painting and discussion to establish the composition and meaning behind the work. The final concept sketch (pictured) was submitted and approved in April 2021.
"A good concept sketch is one of the most important parts of any painting. The idea behind this particular work came from a friend of mine. He shared with me a scene that he had imagined of St Joseph guiding the hands of a young Jesus, teaching him a simple task in the workshop. St Joseph and Jesus are often depicted together in a workshop, but working separately. The difference with this image is the way St Joseph is quite literally, guiding the hands of God." - Daniel
Once the concept for the painting was established, it was time to begin designing and building the set. This involved:
Costume design and fabrication
Set design and fabrication
Selecting and hiring models
Hiring the photographer
Experimenting with lighting
Each element in the final set was carefully considered. The costumes were hand-made from linen by Daniel's wife, Ruth (Pictured). The wooden tools seen in the final painting are German jack planes which are over one hundred years old.
Daniel's brother, Nathan, was hired as the photographer for the painting. Nathan runs his own videography business and was able to provide valuable advice on lighting, set-design and composition.
"If there were no budget constraints, the ideal scenario would be to hire the models for a few weeks and paint directly from life. The next best option is to create a high-quality reference photo and use this in combination with a few quick colour studies painted from life" - Daniel
The model for St Joseph was Canberra local, Mike Giorgi (pictured). Mike is a lawyer, part-time model and plays ice-hockey for Canberra Brave.
After the photoshoot, Daniel sorted through hundreds of photos to find the right shot to use as a reference for the painting. Some minor post-processing of the final image helped to adjust the colour and lighting.
With a quality reference photo selected and approved by the client, it was finally time to begin the painting. This stage involved:
Ordering materials including Belgian linen canvas and Michael Harding hand-made oil paints
Completing a small colour-study in oil to establish the basic colour palette for the painting.
Sketching the overall image onto the canvas in charcoal
Completing a monochrome underpainting called the grisaille. This stage focuses on sculpting the image using lights and darks.
Completing the first painting stage
Completing the second painting stage
"The painting itself took about three months. Once touch dry, a preliminary varnish was applied to protect the work while still allowing it to cure. Depending on paint consistency, an oil painting can take anywhere between six to twelve months to dry properly". - Daniel
The final painting measures 1400 x 900mm and is hanging at St Anthony's Catholic Church in Wanniassa, Australia Capital Territory.
Giclee Print Making
After receiving lots of positive feedback about the painting, we are excited to offer a series of museum-grade, fine-art prints.
The print making process involved:
Sending the painting interstate to be scanned in super-high resolution
Colour matching the scanned image to the original painting
Printing the image on heavy 310gsm fine art paper using archival inks
The prints are true to the colour, tone and brushwork of the original painting and will be a beautiful addition to any home.
Available for purchase:
Fine art prints
A special series of 100 hand-signed prints
The original oil painting colour-study completed by Daniel in preparation for the final work
Contact us for custom sized prints and orders.