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The Holly King

By AngieLatham    
As promised, this is my interpretation of the Celtic Holly King.
A huge thankyou to Chris (croberts) who kindly allowed me to shoot his portrait without any idea of what I was going to do with it! I hope you like it :-$
(ducks behind sofa)

(original pic in the mod section)

"The myth of the Holly King/Oak King probably originated from the Druids to whom these two trees were highly sacred. The Oak King (God of the Waxing Year) kills the Holly King (God of the Waning Year) at Yule (the Winter Solstice). The Oak King then reigns supreme until Litha (the Summer Solstice) when the two battle again, this time with the Holly King victorious. Examples of the Holly King's image can be seen in our modern Santa Claus. He dons a sprig of holly in his hat, wears red clothing, and drives a team of eight (total number of Solar Sabbats) reindeer, an animal sacred to the Celtic Gods (deer). Mistletoe and holly came into modern Christmas celebrations through the memorializing of this battle. The holly with berries are hung in honor of the Holly King and mistletoe in honor of the Oak King. Although the Holly King and Oak King are mortal enemies at the two Solstices - Yule and Litha - it should be remembered that they are actually two sides of one whole, and neither would exist without the other."

Tags: Holly Christmas Winter Celtic Rowardennan06 Specialist and abstract Digitally manipulated King God Pagan Wiccan Yule Portraits and people

Voters: chris-p, AlleyCatz, Possum and 56 more

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giggles 16
14 Nov 2006 8:50PM
wow wow wowzer
RoddBC 14 40 United States
14 Nov 2006 8:53PM
Great mod Angie! I'm wishing for Christmas already.

AngieLatham 16 790 2 United Kingdom
14 Nov 2006 8:56PM
I watched the whole of Balamory yesturday and you weren't even in it! :-( lol
kaybee 16 7.4k 26 Scotland
14 Nov 2006 8:57PM
Out of this world Angie
Bexphoto 16 106 United Kingdom
14 Nov 2006 8:57PM
Wow fab one Angie, and the perfect model!

AngieLatham 16 790 2 United Kingdom
14 Nov 2006 9:03PM
Thankyou Roy and Bex Smile This has taken an awfull lot of work I can tell you!lol About 28 layers for this one....phew....I have a real headache now :-p

The beard is made up from pictures of sheeps wool I found on the beach,holly from the garden and the snow and ice from last years snowfall (about the only decent one we had)
kaybee 16 7.4k 26 Scotland
14 Nov 2006 9:03PM
I can't get away from is astounding what you have created..................unbelievable

kitsch 14 439 4 United Kingdom
14 Nov 2006 9:06PM
wow! that's a christmas image and a half!

excellent work Smile

AngieLatham 16 790 2 United Kingdom
14 Nov 2006 9:06PM
Taking orders for christmas cards now.....

lol :-p
conrad 16 10.9k 116
14 Nov 2006 9:14PM
I can feel a Jingle Bells moment coming on... Wink

Seriously, though, it's amazing what you've done with this portrait of Chris. Wow!

JouŠo 16 56 Finland
14 Nov 2006 9:14PM
jesus! This is awesome, Angie!

TeresaH 15 1.1k United Kingdom
14 Nov 2006 9:19PM
Fantastic manipulation. I see Chris in a very different light now!!! He does have that mystical celtic look about him, must be the Irish blood.

Boyd 17 11.2k 11 Wales
14 Nov 2006 9:22PM
Great stuff.
AngieLatham 16 790 2 United Kingdom
14 Nov 2006 9:22PM
he he ...the irish blood runs through me too,probably where I get my weirdness from ;-P

Thankyou guys....Chris is looking like he is going to be more popular than poor fraser was as the Oak King!
stevenb Plus
17 279 7 England
14 Nov 2006 9:27PM
Top draw manipulation Angela. On the original start image you got the look in the eyes just right and then you created this masterpiece, realy realy good. Deserves an EC

petra16 14 169 Scotland
14 Nov 2006 9:42PM
Briliant can I have an order for 20 cards
can I use this as my winter screen saver


colin 16 697 5 Scotland
14 Nov 2006 9:59PM
Simply superb, Angie. What a transformation of our Chris.Big click.
croberts 16 2.2k 8 Ireland
14 Nov 2006 10:00PM
i suppose id better comment! I'd no idea it was going to look like this. amazing work.

Chris. :o)
daviewat 17 4.1k Scotland
14 Nov 2006 10:02PM
Stunning Smile)))))))))))

juldon 17 78 England
14 Nov 2006 10:12PM
Sssh dont tell him he has a sheep on his chin.

No jokes aside I think this is one of your best Angie....
All the elements in this work very well and its a real wintery image. One of those that you just want to keep coming back to and taking another look.
I really like it can you tell?

Julie xxx
beaniebabe 15 2.3k England
14 Nov 2006 10:26PM
Fantastic and congratulations on forth in the Oct comp :o)

Angie x

wish I could get even close ;o)
Possum Plus
14 148 England
14 Nov 2006 10:28PM
Outstanding work. Your talent is breathtaking.
csurry 18 9.2k 92
14 Nov 2006 10:29PM
Best portrait I've seen on Chris, and boy on ePZ have we seen a few portraits of Chris. But even without reading the description, you just knew from those eyes who it was that formed the basis of the image.
sut68 17 2.0k 77 England
14 Nov 2006 10:30PM
Chris never looked better Wink [sorry mate]!!

fauxtography 15 6.6k 36
14 Nov 2006 11:33PM
Chris you look good in a sheeps wool beard! Wink Another Stunner Angie!
BobbyHB 14 2 England
14 Nov 2006 11:50PM
By 'eck lass, what will you come up with next!!
This is another stunner and well worth the effort.
ktcam 15 457 Scotland
15 Nov 2006 12:24AM
An absolutely stunning image. Chris was definately the right 'model' for this Wink I love how you have brought all the elements so expertly together and his eyes are magnetic. A fab image and I agree - one of your best!
great stuff Ange Smile
AngieLatham 16 790 2 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 2:35AM
Awww, thankyou so much for all your lovely comments, I'm so glad you liked it!
I can't seem to stop at the's 2.32am and I am still wired and working on photoshop! :-$

Cats,magic and snow tommrow Smile
Alison_S 14 339 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 6:28AM
Another belter Angie, beautiful work!!

DouglasLatham 15 454 England
15 Nov 2006 7:30AM
Theres an RC for you Angie Smile

AlleyCatz 14 274 6 England
15 Nov 2006 7:50AM
Just brilliant work.Love it.

POOCHIE 14 21 6 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 8:24AM

TelStar 15 116 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 8:52AM
Marvellous image. I should think he's very happy with that!
jeanie Plus
16 6.0k 6 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 10:14AM
OOOOOh now I know why you have been quiet on site this week - you have been up to your eyeballs in layers! This is absolutely superb work Angie. I am so pleased to have been there when you were taking the original shots of Chris...makes it all the more special somehow..

Skichic 14 65 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 11:48AM
Brilliant work Angie - love it!

croberts 16 2.2k 8 Ireland
15 Nov 2006 12:42PM
popped back in for another look.

my two girls love this, they want to put it on the fridge!
SuziBlue 17 16.2k 10 Scotland
15 Nov 2006 1:18PM
What incredibly beautiful work Angie. I so admire your skill and your patience in producing work like this, and you're right, Chris is perfect for this. Those eyes ... far-seeing and fathoms deep.

Really outstanding.

Wow - the Oak King and the Holly King from one meet - and I'm looking forward to the cat magic!
AngieLatham 16 790 2 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 1:29PM
"On the fridge" ! lol Smile

Thankyou once again for your encouragment and compliments,should have credited Jeanie for being the holder-upper of the background for the shoot (and yes,she probably was on tiptoe ;-P)
Thankyou Dougie for being my number 30 Smile
BigCol 19 1.8k 1 Scotland
15 Nov 2006 1:34PM
Oh yes, nicely done, this looks amazing and is well worth the effort put in to produce it.
Fishnet 16 5.0k 5 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 2:46PM
Stunning, I am so envious !
PatrickSmith 15 1.2k 2 United States
15 Nov 2006 2:51PM
LOL - Oh, only 28 layers?

Anyway I love his reaction. I still think you could make quite a good living putting real people into scenes like this. It is a whole fantasy world that comes alive for them!

AngieLatham 16 790 2 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 4:00PM
Thankyou Colin,Anna and Patrick Smile

I am starting to put word about Patrick ,I'm sure your right and it's a great challange for me too rather than sticking prints on cards all day! Wink
Dennie 16 260 United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 4:40PM
Excellent! work ,really has a christmas feel to it. I love your truley Unique work can always spot it a mile off. Denise x
Mari 17 1.8k United Kingdom
15 Nov 2006 6:16PM
Hi Angie, have you ever thought about giving classes, would love to know how to do this, Chris really suits being the Holly King :0} - stunning work as always

BobbyHB 14 2 England
15 Nov 2006 9:18PM
Forgot to click last night, so here it is.
AngieLatham 16 790 2 United Kingdom
16 Nov 2006 11:03AM
Thankyou Denise and Mari Smile
I don't think it would be a good idea for me to do classes seens as I don't seem to use photoshop in the way your supposed to in the books! lol
It's strange because most of my work really dosen't start comming together untill over half way in....then suddenly somthing clicks into place and everything else seems easy, but I really struggle with most images for a good while and usually decide to give up before they 'click'.
jeanie Plus
16 6.0k 6 United Kingdom
16 Nov 2006 1:30PM
tiptoe - pah!

(it was a large piece of card - didn't need to Tongue )
AngieLatham 16 790 2 United Kingdom
16 Nov 2006 8:17PM
Grin Grin
The_Collector 14 4 1 United Kingdom
20 Nov 2006 10:11PM
Fantastic piece of art, like the OG portrait as well.
KarenFB Plus
14 5.5k 179 England
31 Aug 2007 5:14PM
I think Chris makes a very good Holly King! - with your help! Smile
Philip_H 8 1.4k United Kingdom
15 Jan 2012 7:34PM
Masterful work. Beautifully crafted image.

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