G.S. Bell

Tom Little

Oil on linen
18 x 24 inches

About Portraiture

"Great portraiture rebels against our society's tendency to stereotype, categorize, and objectify those around us. By celebrating a single personality, portraiture provides a humanizing influence in an age of detachment [and] can also provide an authentic encounter with another person, revealing him in his humanity apart from any job he does or any social role he performs.” ─Juliette Aristides

Portraiture is a way of honoring people as well as a way of attempting to capture something of the essential character and personality of an individual human being. This portrait depicts Dr. Tom Little, a medical missionary to Afghanistan. Over the course of the past 35 years, he and his team provided quality eye care to over a million poor Afghans, often in remote villages. After he and his team were senselessly murdered by the Taliban in 2010, president Obama posthumously awarded him the highest civilian honor, the Medal of Freedom. He holds a map of his beloved Afghanistan. In the background are an optical instrument, and a Bible. On one of the books, a scripture verse from I Samuel 2:30 appears: "I will honor those who honor me."


More Portraits »