Behold, the famous and infamous figures of the…
This is the updated poster design featuring monarchs from 1066 to the present which now includes King Charles III. Purchase copies exclusively through Redbubble (here’s the link to the previous version) or TeePublic.
As a Canadian, the constitutional structure of monarchy is of particular interest to me. While many see monarchy as an outdated relic of the past, I believe that it can be a valuable part of modern governance when properly balanced with other forms of power.
The British monarchy, in particular, has a rich history that spans over a thousand years. From the battles, the victories, the losses, the struggles, the politics, the culture, the literature, the art, the architecture, the music, and the theatre, there is much to learn from the histories of these royal figures who have led England and Great Britain in good times and bad.
And let’s not forget the bling! The ermine, the crowns, the jewels, sceptres, orbs, funny hats, and regalia are all wonderfully ostentatious and fantastic to draw. But beyond their aesthetic appeal, they serve a vital purpose in affirming order in times of peace and good government. The British monarch acts as the rock-solid foundation of power and authority, abiding by limits prescribed within an established legal framework.
Of course, like any human institution, the British monarchy has its flaws. Its human faces have stirred countless passions among humanity over the centuries, from cultish followings of loyalty and devotion to utter contempt and hatred. But despite its flaws, the British monarchy has weathered many storms and adapted accordingly, surrendering human control along the way to codify a structure of order, justice, rights, and freedoms.
That’s why I’ve created an online shop featuring illustrations of kings and queens. By showcasing the iconic figures of British royalty in a fun and artistic way, I hope to celebrate their contributions to history while also acknowledging their limitations. I believe that art has the power to inspire, educate, and spark conversations, and I hope my illustrations will do just that.
The design ending with Queen Elizabeth II is also available.
These full figure depictions of Kings and Queens through English and British history are also showcased individually and available for purchase on a number of products through the MacKayCartoons Boutique on Redbubble.com:
The Royal House of Windsor originated in 1917 when King George V changed the family name, previously used by King Edward VII, from Saxe-Coburg and Gotha due to anti-German sentiment during World War I. Since then, the dynasty has been led by six monarchs: George V, Edward VIII, George VI, Elizabeth II, and currently Charles III. Queen Elizabeth II reigned for 70 years, marking a significant period of modernization of the monarchy towards a more symbolic and ceremonial role. Charles III has expressed his dedication to promoting environmental causes and supporting charitable organizations during his reign. Despite their wealth and power, the Windsor family remains a symbol of British tradition and culture. Other designs of particular interest to this era include: 10 Downing Street Prime Ministers Benjamin Disraeli, Winston Churchill, Churchill’s “Their Finest Hour design,” and Yalta Conference, Harold Wilson, Margaret Thatcher (& The Lady’s Not For Turning Design), Pincess Diana, Charles King of Sausage Fingers, The Three King Charles design, Charles and Camilla design one & design two, and this alternative design of Elizabeth II, Sir Bob Geldof, Morrissey, and Mr. Bean.
The Royal House of Hanover originated in Germany in 1635 when George, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, became the first Hanoverian monarch of Great Britain. This dynasty produced five monarchs: George I, George II, George III, George IV, and William IV. King George III’s reign marked significant expansion of the British Empire but was also characterized by mental illness. George IV’s reign was notable for his extravagance, while William IV oversaw the passing of the Great Reform Act of 1832. The Hanoverian dynasty ended when Queen Victoria ascended to the throne in 1837. Despite originating from Germany, the Hanoverian monarchs became deeply involved in British politics, culture, and society, and their legacy is still felt today. Other designs of particular interest to this era include: Just for fun: The Hangoverians (get it, Hang-overians?), Viscount Horatio Nelson, Charles Dickens, Charles Darwin, Oscar Wilde, Fat King George III, Benedict Arnold, Prince Albert on a Penny Farthing, Karl Marx (who lived in England in the 1800s,) Napoleon Bonaparte, Otto von Bismarck, Queen Victoria etching
The Royal House of Stuart was a Scottish dynasty that ruled over England, Scotland, and Ireland from 1603 to 1714. The first Stuart monarch was James I, who inherited the throne of England after the death of Queen Elizabeth I. James I’s reign saw the creation of the King James Bible, which remains an important English translation of the Bible to this day. Charles I, James I’s son, and Sun King wannabe, was executed by Parliament in 1649 after a long and bloody civil war. After the interregnum period, Charles II was restored to the throne, but his reign was marked by political instability and religious tension. James II, Charles II’s brother, was deposed in the Glorious Revolution of 1688, and the crown passed to his daughter Mary II and her husband, William III. Queen Anne, the last Stuart monarch, ruled until 1714. Despite their relatively short reigns, the Stuarts left a lasting impact on British history and culture, including the development of the Scottish Enlightenment and the creation of the Acts of Union that united England and Scotland. Other designs of particular interest to this era include: Whimsical Charles I design, Charles I “Don’t Lose Your Head” design, Oliver Cromwell, Whimsical throned Charles II, William and Mary share the same throne, Seated Queen Anne
The Tudor dynasty ruled England from 1485 to 1603 and is best known for the reigns of Henry VIII and his daughter Elizabeth I. Henry VII, the first Tudor monarch, gained the throne through his victory over Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth Field. His reign was characterized by his efforts to strengthen the monarchy and bring stability to the realm. Henry VIII, his son, is best known for his six marriages and the English Reformation, which saw the break from the Catholic Church and the establishment of the Church of England. His daughter, Elizabeth I, presided over a period of relative stability and prosperity, known as the Elizabethan era, which was marked by cultural and artistic achievements. The Tudor monarchs faced many challenges during their reigns, including religious conflicts, political unrest, and economic instability. Despite this, they left a significant impact on British history, including the creation of the Royal Navy and the establishment of the Anglican Church. Other designs of particular interest to this era include: Edward VI, Lady Jane Grey, Bloody Mary, William Shakespeare, Cardinal Wolsey, Thomas Cranmer, England’s King Henrys, and the old design for the Tudor Dynasty.
The creative process of the Queen Elizabeth I redesign using the time lapse video from an iPad using the Procreate app.
Illustrations are being revamped and improved to quell the endless dissatisfaction between creator and final artwork. Here’s a link to Graeme’s latest Queen Elizabeth I rendering. The original Queen Elizabeth I design is still available.
The illustrator at some of his favourite royal places…