Tag Archives: colonial history

CANDLE IN THE DIVINE WIND Part 3 – the Sovereign’s Sceptre

At English coronation ceremonies symbolic objects are an important part of the ritual and each has a specific meaning. The Sovereign’s Sceptre with cross represents the monarch’s worldly power with the association of good governance. The sceptre is a gold rod surmounted by an enamelled and gem-studded structure, part of which holds the Star of Africa, the largest colourless cut diamond in the world, cleaved from the great 3,106 carat Cullinan Diamond which the government of the Transvaal (South Africa) presented to King Edward VII in 1907 as a gesture of reconciliation after the Boer War … a sort of king-size suck up?

The following image is the sceptre study (which does not include the Star of Africa) for CANDLE IN THE DIVINE WIND.

Sovereign's Sceptre

Sovereign’s Sceptre




Naked Valour is up on the DEFENCE OF RORKE”S DRIFT page under WATERCOLOURS. There’s a photo sequence of the work and a couple of my working sketches. This painting progressed smoothly despite interruptions – like outboard repair (sort of like fixing the car for dirt dwellers), barnacle scraping, learning Spanish and all those martinis on the back deck (I wish)!

Hasta luego, amigos.

Lt Bromhead colour detail

Just checking the details of Lt. Bromhead’s uniform epaulettes, then I can get this section of the painting finished.

Uploaded here are the latest photos of my progress on VALOUR – a tribute to the men of the 24th awarded the Victoria Cross at Rorke’s Drift.

Here are the first 3 photos showing my painting progress.

VALOUR – the story of a painting.

This is the first of 3 photos I’ve uploaded to the WATERCOLOURS section where I’m logging the progress of this work.


Click here to follow a work in progress – ‘VALOUR‘, a preliminary title.

This is my pencil drawing of Lt. Gonville Bromhead. I depict him as I imagine he felt on that day in 1879 as he prepared for the Zulu attack – tense, alert, determined, resilient, anxious but unafraid.