Many illustrators over the last couple of centuries have created versions of Santa. In the U.S., the jolly old elf would be known as Santa Claus. In England, he would be referred to as Father Christmas, and an illustrator in Germany, would be portraying Saint Nickolas. In any persona, there's a rich tradition of picturing this historical fictional character (don’t tell your kids). Illustrators for decades, indeed centuries past, have described the character with acute visual similarity. And, although a few other illustrators had pictured Santa at the same time, the illustrator Thomas Nast can be credited with establishing the character's archetype. Even Norman Rockwell had referred to Nast's interpretations of the jolly old gentleman with white beard, portly figure, twinkling eyes, and red button nose.
|© 2015 Don Arday.|
We illustrators know without a doubt, there is a Santa. For how would an apparition, a phantom, a specter, a spirit, a persona, be able to actually make money appear in our bank accounts for the portraiture work we have produced of him?
|Father Christmas as pictured in Josiah King’s |
The Examination and Tryal of Father Christmas (1686).
|St. Nicholas delivering toys. Illustrator T. C. Boyd (1848).|
|Saint Nicholas portrait. Illustrator F. O. C. Darley (1862).|
|Although this illustration of Santa Claus by Thomas Nast|
was drawn in 1881, Nast had been publishing illustrations
of Santa as early as1862.
|Santa Claus. Notice his elven stature. illustrator Frank A. |
|One of Norman Rockwell's earliest depictions of Santa |
(1913). Rockwell illustrated Santa many times over his
|Santa becomes a brand. Illustrator Haddon Sundblom (1931).|
Sundblom illustrated Santa for Coca-Cola for more than two