BISHOP DOYLE'S PECTORAL CROSS
The images you are viewing here are just portals into galleries with more photos.
A click on the 1st image will take you to view the drawings with symbol explanations.
A click on the 2nd image takes you to a gallery for a condensed walk thru of the process.
The following images are portals into each day's work showing many of the steps and details of the model making. Each day's work will be shown in a gallery of it's own. Click the image of the day to view the whole day's gallery of photos. Clicking each image in a gallery will provide larger views with explanations of the process and symbolism.
After responding to questions in an interview about our collaborative process I decided to post this...
Bishop-Elect Doyle has a degree in fine arts from The University of North Texas and is a painter. I have a fine arts degree from the University of Houston with a specialization in jewelry and metalsmithing.
I wondered going into the project with and for another artist if it would be a hindrance or a blessing to my own artistic process. I usually prepare my clients to come to the first meeting with an open slate without fixed ideas. In this situation I told him I would come to the first meeting with no preconceived ideas or suggestions. I have described this collaborative experience to many with this brief statement: "He gave me great guidance and direction without controlling the process. What great qualities for a bishop!"
In our first meeting Doyle expressed that he liked my work and wanted to give me freedom to run with it. We came a long way from ideas discussed in that first meeting to the final design as we both stayed open to new ideas that flowed in and continued to communicate with each other by email. We took some time for the ideas to gel before I started the drawings. The elements that stuck from the first meeting were that he definitely wanted a Christ figure on his cross, and he liked the budded cross shape. In that first meeting he suggested incorporating resurrection symbols, possibly flowers. He said he liked the "Arts and Crafts style" which I interpreted as the stylized organic images of nature.
Then I went into my thorough research process which I do for most of my symbolic designs. I came up with the 4 botanical symbols and suggested The Good Shepherd as the Christ image. The Shepherd concept grew on him and he eventually embraced it while acknowledging the Shepherd is a wonderful role model of the ministry of a bishop. He contributed the idea of the lion and lamb at the feet of the Shepherd and the vines to fill the space. Feedback from mutual friends express that they can see both of us in the design.
Until this project, I had never created an image of Christ and I have never made anything this ornate so I would say those are 2 strong elements Doyle contributed to this design. The addition of the lion was a fun thing....While I was in the drawing process, I dashed off via email some scanned images of an early stage of the drawing late one night, offering him the opportunity to draw on it himself. My shepherd had 2 lambs at his feet and one in his arms. The next morning I checked my email and he had replied with a scanned copy of the drawing full of arrows and scribbled notations, one being "Crazy Idea! What if one of the lambs was a lion? The idea that the shepherd is the one that brings peace to the flock?" My first reaction was, "Crazy Idea!", then immediately I thought, "But I like it!" So that became a beloved and unique element of the design.