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Vaettebron - Christmas Card 2011 by Griatch-art Vaettebron - Christmas Card 2011 by Griatch-art
Vättebron

Usually the Vaette wore gray, but if you ever saw a Vaette with a red cap you could be sure it was dressed up for some special occation. People used to say that when the Vaette marched through the forest in long columns, it was a sign of change, of seasons shifting, of new eras to come. Many claimed to have seen a glimpse of their pointy caps in the depth of the forest, but none could ever be sure.


My Christmas Card for this year. I'm a bit early since I need time to get them printed etc.

Vaettebron literally means "The Bridge for Vaette". The ae is really the Swedish letter Ä. I couldn't find a good English translation for "Vaette" - the closest might be "Gnome". They are small michievous entities usually found close to humans, a relative of the "Tomte" and the "Vittra". Whereas the mythos does exist in Scandinavia, the above text and image is my own interpretation. :)

All done in MyPaint + GIMP over about 8 hours. Original is over 7000 pixels wide, there are lots of details that don't really come across when scaled down here (will be fun to see how much is seen in print). Comments and feedback appreciated!

I did a recording when painting this, if you are interested you can find it on YouTube here: [link]

Making a Christmas card has become a tradition for me. Here are my previous ones (all can be gotten as a print):

2010 (Good neighbours):

2009 (Surprise gift):

2008 (Night in the troll forest):

2007 (We're THIS tight!):

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Griatch
Add a Comment:
 
:iconsongwind:
This one is downright incredible.

Two things struck me immediately. First, you did an excellent job incorporating the cool colors into the snow while still making sure it looked like snow. It's something I really love about good winter scenes.

The sky and atmospheric perspective are great. The sky has a warm glow, but it's still not a clear sky - something I associate with winter.

The light in general is quite nice. The dappled shadows in the background add some nice interest as we follow the dwindling vätter into the distance. The reflection off the stream is nice as well.

There aren't a lot of details to be seen about the gnomes at this resolution, so it's hard to comment on that. However, the broad details are great. The sameness of the procession sets up a nice contrast to the vätter who are doing other things. The one helping his/her fellows off the branch is sweet. The one staring at the reflection amuses me. My brain gave him a personality and everything.

My quibbles all center around the stream. My brain wants to read it as frozen, but why would they need a bridge? The reflection is very indistinct as though the water is disturbed, but the trees don't seem to be blown about. Finally, the brightest part of the sky is on the left of the picture, but the brightest part of the reflection is on the right. It looks nice, but seems to violate the laws of physics. :)

Did you use references for the trees, snow or stream?
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
14 out of 14 deviants thought this was fair.

The Artist has requested Critique on this Artwork

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:icontoddntheshiningsword:
ToddNTheShiningSword Featured By Owner May 15, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
WHOA even better than the Christmas card before! I think... :XD: :D
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:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner May 16, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is my most popular painting on DA, so you are not alone in liking this one over the other Christmas card. :) Glad you like it!
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Griatch
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:icontoddntheshiningsword:
ToddNTheShiningSword Featured By Owner Edited May 16, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I didn't know that!

*checks it's stats*

It was close for me, though. I almost liked the giant Christmas card better!:dance:It was close for me, though. I almost liked the giant Christmas card better!:dance:
Reply
:icondreamswoman:
dreamswoman Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Special feature for you :love: 
On our group: aRt's Creation Magazine n6 - Special Feature and on our magazine: issuu.com/artscreation/docs/ar…

Happy Holidays! Heart
Reply
:iconbillynikoll:
BillyNikoll Featured By Owner Dec 15, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
oh really beautiful!
Reply
:iconpsimatt:
psimatt Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
love this one , it inspired me to start on digital art . here is my version psimatt.deviantart.com/art/sun…
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:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Cool! Thanks for the link, fun to hear you were inspired to go into digital artwork from this. Which program are you using?
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Griatch
Reply
:iconpsimatt:
psimatt Featured By Owner Nov 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
i use gimp,cs2 an pse8.0
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:iconblacknightingale81:
BLACKNIGHTINGALE81 Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2013   General Artist
lovely idea and work^^
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:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks, glad you like it enough to give it a fave. :D
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Griatch
Reply
:iconblacknightingale81:
BLACKNIGHTINGALE81 Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2013   General Artist
my pleasure^^
Reply
:iconpoohster2012:
poohster2012 Featured By Owner Dec 16, 2012
Not only beautiful, but an enchanting tale. Thank you.
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Dec 20, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks, glad you like it! :D
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Griatch (thanks for the fave too!)
Reply
:iconsilvervulpine:
SilverVulpine Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Clever concept! :)
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Glad you think so. :) Thanks for the comment and fave!
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Griatch
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:iconsilvervulpine:
SilverVulpine Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
You're welcome. :)
Reply
:iconjmagnus:
JMagnus Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2012
amazing! and all in gimp? That makes it even more fun!
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:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks! This is made in GIMP and MyPaint (both of which are free, open-source programs).
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Griatch
Reply
:iconblackclover13:
BlackClover13 Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2012
It's hard to find Words, not sounding like a 13 year old girl, because all that comes up to my mind are words like, so cuuute and looooveely.
It's such a nice modeled Landscape and the Interaction between the Vaette rounds it up.
(sry my english is horrible)
And still all that comes up my mind is: "Gott ist das Entzückend"
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That's high praise, any image reducing people to sound like 13 year old girls must be called successful. :D

Danke! (and your English is just fine, I'm not native English either).
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Griatch
Reply
:iconrosechaotic:
RoseChaotic Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
So you used GIMP to make this? how it is compared to photoshop?
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I never used Photoshop, but GIMP is a very sophisticated program that always did all I needed it to do. Plus of course that it is open-source and free to use (so you can just download it legally and try it out for yourself rather than take my word for it) :).
.
Griatch
Reply
:icondihitsu:
dihitsu Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2012
Not much to say, i simply enjoy looking at the painting. Perhaps, would it be possible to publish smaller zoomed area with Vaette gnomes? Maybe i misunderstood description - that there are still things to see when it is not scaled down.
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Glad you like it! There are plenty of details to see, for the development of the Vaette you might want to take a peek at the timelapse video I made while creating this. :)
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Griatch
Reply
:iconveeseegoth:
veeseegoth Featured By Owner May 14, 2012
Really nice. Should be placed in DD i guess.
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner May 18, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Glad you think so, thanks for the comment!
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Griatch
Reply
:icontheshock:
TheShock Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
I don't like gnomes but this painting is brilliant. Maybe the best from you in landscapes. The lighting and mood is very good man. Congrats. Maybe a late comment ,I didn't see it before
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner May 7, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm glad you like it, I'm quite happy with the light too. Thanks a lot for your comment!

PS: Aww, what have you got against gnomes? ;)
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Griatch
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:icontheshock:
TheShock Featured By Owner May 7, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
i dont like gnomes but more concrete, the "garden" gnomes
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:iconmotte01:
Motte01 Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2012
good job. i like that your pic is talking in some way...the little one who is testing the temperature of the water, the footsteps in the snow and of course the array of gnomes on their important journey...again, very well done.
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Half the fun of making an image like this is to try to convey some sort of story-in-a-moment, so I'm glad this particular aspect comes across. Thanks a lot for your comment and fave!
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Griatch
Reply
:iconcaptainchaos1974:
CaptainChaos1974 Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2012
Rien Poortvliet would be proud! :)
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:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That's high praise! Rien Poortvliet is a hard artist to beat though, those paintings of his looks like photos! :D
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Griatch
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:iconcaptainchaos1974:
CaptainChaos1974 Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2012
Rien Poortvliet would be proud! :)
Reply
:iconkyrarah:
Kyrarah Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2012  Hobbyist
<3 :la:
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:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
:)
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Griatch
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:iconaxyzdile:
AxyzDile Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Absolutely incredible О_О
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Glad you like it! And thanks for the fave!
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Griatch
Reply
:iconmanapi:
manapi Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Very beautiful painting :)
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:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks!
.
Griatch
Reply
:iconmanapi:
manapi Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
You're welcome! :)
Reply
:iconcarmenveloso:
CarmenVeloso Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm honoured, thanks for the feature!
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Griatch
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:iconslickpimpinasty:
SlickPimpinasty Featured By Owner Jan 15, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Stunningly beautiful.
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks!
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Griatch
Reply
:iconecurbsemaj:
ecurbsemaj Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2012
True art, truly imaginative.
Reply
:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks, appreciate hearing this. :D
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Griatch
Reply
:iconmckrauss:
MCKrauss Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2011
Your artwork has been featured here! [link]
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:icongriatch-art:
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Jan 6, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ah, sorry for the late reply, just came back from holidays. Thanks for the feature! Much appreciated. A belated happy holidays to you too. :D
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Griatch
Reply
:iconelise-lucy:
Elise-Lucy Featured By Owner Dec 21, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Yaay, I didn't notice the gnomes on the thumbnail xD
Anyway, it's cute. And I see, this bridge is very tricky xD When I was a kid, I imagined, this kind of branches could be great bridges for smaller creatures ;)
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Submitted on
November 27, 2011
Image Size
9.4 MB
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6672×4086
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