Posted on July 27, 2015
Here is the completed image I made of Manjushri Bodhisattva. This thangka began life as a commission for a book cover. My brief was simply to create an image of Manjushri riding a Snowlion. I chose to illustrate Manjushri in Bodhisattva form, as this suited the subject matter of the book, and allowed me to have Manjushri’s hands free to have some interaction with the Snowlion, I felt this was important. I wanted Manjushri to be gently touching the Snowlions head and for them to be looking at each other, suggesting a deeper connection between the two. The idea for the book cover was changed, so I decided to complete the work as a thangka for my own collection.
I was really happy that this work was done in collaboration with my good friend Andrea. She did a wonderful job of drawing the scarf and provided the photography to complete the background mountains. I hope to work more with her in the future.
There are many forms of Manjushri and some of them depict Him riding a Snowlion. This image is slightly unique due to position of the hands. Usually when Manjushri is shown in Bodhisattva form the sword and text are both resting on a lotus flower and Manjushri holds the stems of the lotus, in the mudra of teaching Dharma, at the heart. This incidentally is how Lama Tsongkapa is depicted in the upper part of the picture. Here I allowed the hands to rest in a relaxed position allowing the interaction with the Snowlion yet still holding the lotus stems.
I hope you like this picture.