Behind-the-scenes in putting together the Guideposts annual publication, The Joys of Christmas
Posted in , Dec 23, 2015
In putting together our special holiday publication, Guideposts The Joys of Christmas, over these last seven years, we’ve established some Christmas traditions of our own. Each issue features a unique presentation of the Christmas story, with key passages from the Bible illustrated in a different theme. In the 2015 edition, the Christmas story is told through a succession of tapestries: Gabriel appearing to Mary, Mary and the Baby Jesus, the shepherds out in the fields, the three Wise Men, the flight into Egypt…
A lot of research went into finding tapestries to represent each aspect of the Christmas story, and Katie Hogin, our assistant photo editor, was responsible for the lion’s share of the work. She chose selections for most of the pieces fairly quickly, and the art and editorial staffs gathered round the conference room table to pick our favorites. But one image was missing: the annunciation of the shepherds.
“It’s become my white whale!” Katie said. Multiple resources had led her to dead ends. There were plenty of paintings of the scene available, but Katie knew we needed a tapestry. What was the Christmas story without the shepherds in the field? The pressure was on.
Finally, through Google Books, Katie came across a 15th century Flemish School wool tapestry depicting Gabriel appearing to Mary, along with the Nativity, in the Burrell Collection in Glasgow, Scotland. In the top, right hand corner of the tapestry, in the distant field, were the shepherds. Katie reached out to Bridgeman Images, where agents there were already assisting in her search. They were able to work with the Burrell Collection in Glasgow for permission to use a detail of the tapestry and provided a high-resolution scan for printing. And there you have it. Katie caught her “white whale.”
It’s not too late to Click Here to order extra copies of "The Joys of Christmas". Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year.