Master and Servant 2D Entry: Linda Bergkvist


At times, Nature is the master of Humanity… and at other times, Humanity certainly rules Nature.

Nature makes us hurry inside when she weeps rain upon the world. With hurricanes, she toys with us. Tornadoes are used to punish, earthquakes to throw us about like pebbles in a child’s game. We live on her land, and through that, she rules over us. Our very bodies belong to her - they age in rhythm with her, and they are subject to urges and desires that she imposes on us. In some ways, we’re little but slaves to Nature’s ways.

But Humanity… on the other hand… has found another way to dominate. Humanity destroys what we touch. We reach out towards pretty things in greed, and leave a trail of death behind. We fence the woods in, we run over the animals and poison the seas. Ours is a different kind of mastery but it is one nevertheless. Nature serves us because she has no other choice. Humanity always expects Nature to mend what damage we’ve done: heal the woods burned down, return the animals hunted to extinction and cleanse the seas… never considering what will happen the day Nature is no longer there to catch us.

In this piece, I tried to show this relationship. Humanity a naïve yet destructive burden, the smile on her lips slight and dreamy as she thinks of the beautiful flowers she will pluck and the lovely birds she will see while all around her these very things now fade away. She’s blind to the destruction she causes. She knows that Nature will be there for her, she knows that there will always be the scent of flowers and always the gentle surge of the sea. She is Nature’s master in that Nature has no choice but to try to catch her and always try to mend the damage she has done… but she is Nature’s slave because she must breathe the air, drink the water and eat the food that only Nature can give her.

I didn’t want a conventional take on the Master and Servant theme. I wanted one that I felt would be meaningful for me. Those who have followed the progress know that I’ve put thought into pretty much every little symbol - there’s a reason to why there is a peach tree in the background (peach symbolising femininity in many cultures), there’s a reason to why I flipped the picture around (wanting the destruction to move in a clockwise motion) and the colours are almost exactly the same as I laid them out in the beginning, wanting the warm, rich colours to symbolise the life that’s being taken away. I chose two women to represent humanity and nature because a man and a woman would only lend a conventional, romantic aspect to the image… and I’ve always imagined Nature a feminine quality.

That’s it. Thank you for your time, thank you everyone for the help. Finally I’ll be able to get some sleep.


Pretty much a flawless piece

Thanks a bunch for humiliating the rest of us!!!



I’ve been watching your progress, as I’m sure everyone else has as well ;). Your work is very inspiring. Even the clothing your characters wear are fantastic designer pieces. You have a fantasic sense of lighting and color.

The best of luck in this contest and all you do. :slight_smile:


When I first saw the concept images for this image I was a little wary. As you worked up the painting I must admit to not liking it particularly much; a personal dislike for the 2 plane separation of background and figures/critters. However, somewhere as you developed this image it that dislike just evaporated. This is a truly beautiful image, with depth and layers in the symbolism and detail. So much so, that I can’t wait to see at a larger size just to be able to fully appreciate it - although I suspect that this is an image that needs to be printed in order to ‘see’ it better?


My god…this is just…ugh, I can’t think of a word that would properly describe this, because any word I think of is an understatement. This is just…supercalifragilisticexpealidocious. :blush:

Everything is gorgeous, all the details, they’re just astounding. Let’s see just how long of a comment I can make on this, hmm?

clears throat

The dress patterns are so beautiful, they add a lot of reality to the characters in a very subtle way. They are very easy on the eye and create interest in the fabric. The flowers and such popping out of Nature’s dress are perfect, they truly look as though they are part of it. The insects are great, they look just like they should, and the butterflies are so amazing. The detail you put in every single wing, it’s just astounding. And each butterfly is different, with different color schemes for each and different patterns. Wonderful.

The birds need a whole paragraph to themselves, because they are great! I love how you made their feathers shiny and slightly iridescent. That’s something that really helped with the realism of the birds, because, if I remember correctly, you made these fellas up. But one would never guess that when looking at this image. I particularly like the turquiose bird who’s wing is deteriorating behind Humanity. But I also like the red-headed on behind Nature’s head, because it’s beak looks so exotic and yet so real.

The faces are gorgeous. I really think that opening up Nature’s mouth helped bring out the emotion on her face, she looks a bit more surprised that Humanity has just fallen into her arms, resistant and yet ready for her. Humanity is great as well, she has a wonderfully evil look on her face. She is most certainly “spoiled”. She seems very haughty and self-centered. She knows that Nature will catch her.

The background is great. It’s so discreet, but really detailed. Amazing work on that. The peaches are great, so full of color and liveliness, it just makes me want to pluck one out of the painting and eat it (that is, if I liked peaches to begin with, LOL). I really like the little bird sitting on the branch. One thing that really sticks out is the grass behind Nature. It looks so realistic that its just…hmm, wonderful! Everything in the grass, and the trees and everything, it’s just great.

Overall, I give it two very, very happy thumbs up. This painting rocks, I love it, it’s great. I can only dream of painting a picture as detailed as this someday in my life. dreams

Keep up the wonderful paintings, Linda, because this one is great, and I look forward to more.


Girl, you so deserve your chocolate bar!

Congratulations with your entry, one of your best.


Could you post a huge version ?

I want to see all the details. The litle mouse is barely visible.



Absolutely beautiful use of color Linda. I think this may be one of your best.

Brake a leg. =)



I have not words enough to describe my awe.
Have you ever read Ishmael? If not, I think you could appreciated it.


Love it, 'nuff said.

I think you’ve succeeded quite well at what you set out to do!:thumbsup: It’s been great towatch you make this in this fashion. :DI’ve learned a great deal from your progress, it has surely made me better at what I do. It’s a really great piece, and once again just really love the subject matter. Simply amazing Linda!!!


Simply breathtaking.

This is one of my favorite pieces by you, Linda. One of my favorite period, actually. It has been very inspirational following your progress. Thank you very much for allowing us to watch you at work. The finished product is just amazing. There are no words :slight_smile:


It’s finally finished… wow. :bowdown:

This has really been a learning experience for me: being able to watch a person whom I personally consider to be one of the best digital artists in the world go from concept to final illustration has given me a lot of insight that I was never aware of till now.

Linda, you are a true Artist and I have much respect and admiration for you and your work. :slight_smile:


Congratulations Linda! It’s finally finished & believe you’ll get to have better sleep after this :slight_smile: This painting is so nice. Thanks for sharing. Good Luck.


Your work is amazing… As usual! Chapeau! :slight_smile:


wow :eek:

amazing :bowdown:


hey linda, just came her to tell you again: just beautiful, it really has surpassed ur previous pieces…

no shoes in this piece though :smiley:


Congratulations on an excellent labour of love. The result has been inspiring!




Im in total awe with your work!

Beutifull , sheer briliance ! (droooooooooool)


Linda, the fact that I can’t think of a coherent thing to write to tell you how beautiful this painting is should tell you how great of an artist you are.

tips hat Congratulations on finishing this breathtaking piece… now go sleep for a few days to re-coup :slight_smile:



Woooot! Finally finished! Great job, can’t wait to see what you win hehe :thumbsup: Been fascinating keeping up with your wips!