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Submitted on
November 27, 2011
Image Size
9.4 MB
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13,703 (7 today)
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Vaettebron - Christmas Card 2011 by Griatch-art Vaettebron - Christmas Card 2011 by Griatch-art

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!):

Add a Comment:
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?
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14 out of 14 deviants thought this was fair.

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BillyNikoll Featured By Owner 6 days ago  Hobbyist General Artist
oh really beautiful!
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…
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?
psimatt Featured By Owner Nov 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
i use gimp,cs2 an pse8.0
BLACKNIGHTINGALE81 Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2013   General Artist
lovely idea and work^^
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks, glad you like it enough to give it a fave. :D
BLACKNIGHTINGALE81 Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2013   General Artist
my pleasure^^
poohster2012 Featured By Owner Dec 16, 2012
Not only beautiful, but an enchanting tale. Thank you.
Griatch-art Featured By Owner Dec 20, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks, glad you like it! :D
Griatch (thanks for the fave too!)
SilverVulpine Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Clever concept! :)
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