Norman Rockwell Christmas:
December 6, 1930 Issue of The Saturday Evening Post
Norman Rockwell's Christmas: Knight Looking In Stained Glass Window appeared on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post published December 6, 1930.
The original oil on canvas painting, 48 x 30 inches or 122 x 76 cm, is located in a private collection.
This painting was Rockwell's 131st overall of 322 total pictures featured on the cover of The Post. Rockwell's career with the Post spanned 47 years, from his first cover illustration, Boy With Baby Carriage in 1916 to his last, Portrait of John F. Kennedy, in 1963.
This was also the ninth Rockwell cover in 1930. The Post featured a Rockwell illustration on its cover nine times in 1930.
This painting also appears in three Rockwell commentary books. It appears:
- as illustration 332 of Norman Rockwell's America by Christopher Finch,
- as illustration 263 of Norman Rockwell: Artist and Illustrator by Thomas Buechner and
- on page 120 of Norman Rockwell, A Definitive Catalogue by Laurie Norton Moffatt.
The original cover price was still just five cents.
Christmas: Knight Looking In Stained Glass Window
Here is another famous Norman Rockwell Christmas illustration.
Your question, "What does this painting have to do with Christmas?" is a very reasonable question. One needs to study the painting to notice all the holiday references.
Of course, the caption assures us that this is a Christmas picture.
The main character is, of course, the knight. He is standing watch outside at Christmas.
It is cold and dark outside. A layer of frozen snow rests on the top of the window casing. The wind is blowing his coat. He stands with his back to the wind, gazing through the window.
The knight is not wearing any Christmas finery.
He is also not doing a great job of guarding. He is distracted by the scene inside the window. He is missing the party.
Christmas: Knight Looking In Stained Glass Window was only one of 322 Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post covers; Here is the list of Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post cover illustrations.
Here is the complete list of all Norman Rockwell magazine covers.
The knight's facial expression make him seem envious of those people inside at the party. Who wouldn't want to be inside with his friends instead of stuck outside in the cole pulling guard duty?
The scene inside shows us how Christmas was celebrated during the time period Rockwell is painting. Rockwell was meticulous about authenticity. You can be sure that this is what a Christmas party looked like back then.
Through the window, we notice a feast. We also can see the partiers dressed in their Christmas finery. Poor knight. He should stop torturing himself and move along.
Norman Rockwell Christmas: Knight Looking In Stained Glass Window (1930)
(Image Only) Copyright © 1930 Saturday Evening Post & Curtis Publishing Company
Do you have a personal story about this painting? Do you know the model personally? Do you have a different take on the commentary?
Norman Rockwell Quotes:
I'll never have enough time to paint all the pictures I'd like to.
No man with a conscience can just bat out illustrations. He's got to put all his talent and feeling into them!
Some people have been kind enough to call me a fine artist. I've always called myself an illustrator. I'm not sure what the difference is. All I know is that whatever type of work I do, I try to give it my very best. Art has been my life.
Right from the beginning, I always strived to capture everything I saw as completely as possible.
The secret to so many artists living so long is that every painting is a new adventure. So, you see, they're always looking ahead to something new and exciting. The secret is not to look back.
I can take a lot of pats on the back. I love it when I get admiring letters from people. And, of course, I'd love it if the critics would notice me, too.
You must first spend some time getting your model to relax. Then you'll get a natural expression.
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Norman Rockwell Santa Claus
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