Wyrd Designs – Finding Religious Art

Let’s face it, having religious iconography, statuary, jewelry and artwork is something most of us crave. But sometimes finding those items can be nigh impossible. For those seeking the Gods found in the Northern Tradition, it can be very hit and miss. Certain deities (Odin, Thor, Freya & Freyr) do have depictions that have been found in the archaeological record, but other major deities like Frigga we don’t have a single image of at all (well at least that I know of).

Of course, even when a depiction of the deity exists from antiquity, we still have each of us our own uniquely individual aesthetic styles and artistic tastes. So sometimes the ancient, simplistically stylized depictions just don’t mesh with the decor we have going on in our homes, or in our personal fashion sense. So what’s a person to do?

For the creatively talented this is when many turn to making their own art, for the rest of us this is when we go looking for pre-existing modern artistic renderings by today’s artists, we commission them from those artisans, or we find something that we personally resonate well with that we will use to become a symbolic representation of that deity.

A great place to find artistic renderings of our Gods is online social and art community DeviantArt. Artists from around the world, from children to grandparents, post on the site. Some of the artists are fellow worshipers of the old Gods, and other artists are merely illustrating an interesting story they were inspired by.  While it can be just a treat to see what people have come up with, in some cases the artists have also enabled those images to be purchased as prints through DeviantArt’s online shop. So for those seeking artwork to place on an altar… you may just find what you’ve been looking for.  In other cases, the artists merely post images or photos of their artistic creations to images to show off to a receptive audience.

Here’s a few select pieces of artwork I found on DeviantArt.  I’ll showcase a few in the article directly, and for the rest you’ll have to follow the link to see them. I’m trying to be kind, loading all those graphics would be harsh otherwise! Please keep in mind a few may not be safe for work as they depict some nudity. I’ve denoted them appropriately.  Enjoy!

Odin by Sir Grunt

Thought and Memory by Pallanophdepicting Odin’s birds Hugin and Munin

Norse Bang by Lermsdepicting the Norse creation story

Forn Sidr Julemaerke 2008 by Sigrulfrstamps used by a Danish religious group

Odin’s Birds by Somk - depicting Odin’s birds Hugin and Munin

Frigg by Lindsay Archer

Ran by Nell Mckellarmay not be safe for work

Freyja by Nellis Eketropmay not be safe for work

Eir by Nixjim

On Sundays by Devilrydepicting Heimdall and Odin

Idun by meluseena

Sisters by Thorleifrwood carving recreating viking ship burial finds

Troth the Sea Serpent by wanderingmage - silver worked oathring

And of course, if you like what you see, you may just enjoy searching to see the many other gems this site has to offer!

  • http://norsealchemist.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

    Yes, this is something I’ve come across too. Deviantart is a good place to find stuff, but I wish it was easier to come across artworks for the various gods and goddesses.

    Here’s two of my favs (and the most accurate) of Lady Hel. (Who is not half decaying, half her body is the color of a frozen corpse: blue/black, not made of dead flesh. According to the records I’ve read.)

    http://wintersouls.deviantart.com/art/Hel-make-up-122844669?q=favby%3ASith-Master%2F3363699&qo=18

    http://happyhappijoyjoi.deviantart.com/art/Progeny-14868264?q=favby%3ASith-Master%2F3363699&qo=25

  • http://wyrddesigns.etsy.com K. C. Hulsman

    Yoou’re correct, she’s depicted in source material as having the color of death, but artists take inspiration from source material… and usually find that showing the skeletal structure is far more evocative of death, than a blue palour. But I can also understand how details like that can irk. Nothing annoys me more than seeing the Gods depicted in the stereotypically portrayed horned viking helmets… which didn’t exist to the degree they are portrayed to in pop culture.

    There is indication of a ritual type of headwear that had horns with it, worn only by someone in a sacred capacity (like someone officiating at a specific religious ritual).

    Thanks for sharing the links to Hel. :)


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