I suppose it was the stylized horse against the cinnabar background in the old Novgorod Icon of St. George that initially fascinated me. I wanted to recreate its colors and forms but, alas, felt no overriding spiritual reason for doing so.
Then one evening, while watching the news, I felt depression descending as story after story, both international and domestic, played out. What I wanted was a fierce warrior to come in on his white horse and deal with the bad guys and right the wrongs.
At just such a time, a 14th century iconographer created an image of a third century martyr just about to thrust his holy spear Ascalon down the throat of a fearsome beast that was threatening a town and killing children. No record exists of anything like this happening during George's lifetime. Myth or no, we can only assume that this icon of a battle waged and won is a prayer for both a spiritual and physical reality.