The first wallpaper of Neo Byzantium

Image Credit: Haefen Hassinger

At last, Neo Byzantium has its first Byzantine Empire themed wallpaper; Basil II. The credit for this wallpaper goes to my talented friend and collaborator, Haefen Hassinger. She took the idea I had and breathed life into it in a way that exceeded my expectations. I believe a short explanation of how the wallpaper came to be will add more meaning to it.

How the Basil II wallpaper was created

I have always been a fan of wallpapers and heroes; specifically wallpapers about my heroes. Having them on my desktop reminded me of their qualities and made for some good eye candy. From the very inception of Neo Byzantium, I dreamed of creating wallpapers about the Byzantine Empire. But there was a slight problem however; I couldn’t draw to save my life.

By chance however, I stumbled upon Haefen’s website shortly after I launched Neo Byzantium. As stated in my earlier review, I was very impressed by her talents. It also helped that we shared a common interest in the Byzantine Empire. Luckily for me, we hit it off and the rest is history in the making.

The subject of the wallpaper came to me one day. As a very successful Byzantine emperor, Basil II brought the empire to renewed heights of power and glory during his reign from 976 to 1025. It is true that he was lucky to build upon the foundations left by his predecessors. But there is no denying the determination, dedication and ability of this formidable emperor. Basil’s inspiring quality and greatness made him an ideal subject for the wallpaper.

When I told Haefen about Basil II, she liked my idea and agreed to come up with the wallpaper. I personally like her attention to detail for Basil. I love how Haefen has included Basil’s long side whiskers. These side whiskers were one of Basil’s trademarks because he loved to twirl them when he was in deep thought or angry. At least now we know how he might have grown them. The emperor also spent a lot of time in armour because he was involved in almost constant wars throughout his reign. Therefore, it is fitting that he is depicted wearing lamellar armour. Finally, the destruction in the background is a perfect for this soldier emperor who only lost one battle.

Reflections of the Vizier

That basically sums up the story of Neo Byzantium’s first wallpaper. But this will hopefully not be the last. Meanwhile I hope everyone enjoys having Basil II on your desktop. You can download the wallpaper here.

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