My oldest son, Sam, was the original inspiration for this drawing. We named him Sam Leonard Alvarez. “Leonard” means “heart of a lion”. So I wanted to create a medieval style coat-of-arms for him with his name in mind. After I finished, Monique pointed out that it would make a good tattoo (neither one of us has one).
I used Donatello’s Marzocco Lion as inspiration. For the background, I created an elaborate heart design in the tradition of medieval Celtic style designs.
For Sam, the banner would read, “Sam the Lion – Hearted”. But I thought I could put a more universal message down there to be mankind’s coat-of-arms. “Love Conquers All” is taken from the Latin saying, which reads, “Omnia Vincit Amor.” Since I don’t personally know Latin or know anyone who does, I thought the English version would be more appropriate.