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2012 White House Christmas Card By Iowa Artist Features Bo And No Christmas Tree (PHOTO)

Posted by on Dec. 8, 2012 at 2:26 AM
  • 335 Replies

2012 White House Christmas Card By Iowa Artist Features Bo And No Christmas Tree (PHOTO)

The Huffington Post | By

It's that time of year again, when everyone gets a Christmas card from the White House. Just kidding! Only certain people get the annual mailing, but that doesn't mean the rest of us can't wistfully stare at a virtual version of it. This year's card features a painting by Larassa Kabel. The Des Moines, Iowa-based artist beat out competitors from around the country for her rendering of Bo, the Obama family dog, knee-deep in snow on the White House lawn. The basic image came from a photograph provided by the White House, but putting a scarf around Bo's neck was Kabel's idea, reports the Green Bay Press Gazette:

According to the Gazette, Kabel sent her painting to the White House for consideration after a friend's daughter employed by Michelle Obama invited the artist to submit her work. Kabel, a two-time Obama voter and painter of horses, told ABC News she was making pizza for her family when she got the phone call from the White House secretary. She called the moment "surreal," adding that it blew away her "very, very, very low expectations" for the painting, which she used a toothbrush on to get the snow just right.

Aside from the card itself, Kabel's reward is a joint invitation for her and her husband to the White House Christmas party (which, she points out, comes with the added gift of major people-watching possibilities). Translation: no payment for services rendered.

Still, Kabel is in a select group of artists. Usually the White House commissions someone to create the card, rather than picking from a pool of artists. Last year, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin took issue with the job done by LA-based artist Mark Matuszak, which featured Bo, this time in front of a fireplace in the White House library. In a Fox News appearance, Palin called the card's emphasis on the dog "odd," and wondered why there was no Christmas tree, which she equated with "family, faith and freedom," according to the LA Times.

What will Palin think of Kabel's card, we wonder, which doesn't even have a wreath! Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below, readers

by on Dec. 8, 2012 at 2:26 AM
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Replies (1-10):
annabl1970
by Platinum Member on Dec. 8, 2012 at 2:26 AM
1 mom liked this

white house christmas card

annabl1970
by Platinum Member on Dec. 8, 2012 at 2:29 AM
3 moms liked this

I love the card. But would be nice to have Christmastree on it. Maybe Bo under Christmas Tree LOL

mustbeGRACE
by on Dec. 8, 2012 at 5:02 AM
7 moms liked this

The Obama's are odd people.

Healthystart30
by Silver Member on Dec. 8, 2012 at 5:32 AM
4 moms liked this
I think it's great! Great talent, and I have in the past sent cards with no Christmas tree pictured on them, and don't see why it needs to be included. Maybe they are just trying to show the naysayers that they are not letting critics dictate what Christmas card they chose, or they are making it a tradition, or they liked it the best....
JonJon
by Ruby Member on Dec. 8, 2012 at 5:56 AM
3 moms liked this

That's a pretty good painting and almost looks like a photograph except I can see how she ran her finger over the toothbrush to achieve what looks like flecks of falling snow.

I don't care if there's no wreath or tree; I do care there's no family.  I've always thought non-boxed cards were supposed to be a family portrait; "This is what we look like, this Christmas, y'all.  Aren't we good-looking and well-to-do?"

In the olden days, only people financially well-off cash could afford to have a family photo turned into Christmas cards.  People who did that were considered show-offs back then and I haven't shaken that notion. 

As they are well-off, I'd expect the First Family to have used a pic of themselves as the official Christmas card. 

I heard that people who have written to the President during the year before Christmas receive cards so I sent the Prez an email asking for one.  Let's see if I've been a good enough girl to receive one (gee, I hope I remembered to include my address).

JonJon
by Ruby Member on Dec. 8, 2012 at 5:58 AM

That's the official card.  You know they sent the ones of everyone in the family wearing their brand new, fancy pajamas opening presents around the tree to their real friends and family.

LoveMyBoyK
by Ruby Member on Dec. 8, 2012 at 6:18 AM
8 moms liked this
So what?
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meriana
by Platinum Member on Dec. 8, 2012 at 7:50 AM
1 mom liked this

Neat card. I would have liked to see a light or two on in the White House though.  Funny how we can all find something to pick at but few of us have that kind of talent. 

As far as no Christmas tree in it, perhaps they were trying to be sensitive to those who may not celebrate in the same way or maybe don't celebrate Christmas at all. Seems these days if there was a Christmas tree in it, there'd be some yelling about a so-called Christian symbol on Gov. Property, etc. One can't possibly please everyone.

candlegal
by Judy on Dec. 8, 2012 at 7:53 AM
5 moms liked this

If they have 54 Christmas trees, why not have one in the picture?

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