But hey... I'm getting ahead of myself.
The artwork was created by Bungie's very own Lorraine McLees (aka Mehve on bungie.net). It first appeared on bungie.net (in cropped form as a banner) on their TWAB page for December 16, 2021. You could even download the banner as a wallpaper (4K 3840x2160). You can see it on the Story page here.
Bungie would later post the full artwork (in framed form) on their Facebook page with the tagline "Happy holidays to you and yours!" .
Lorraine, who is married to Rob Mclees, has worked as an artist and graphics designer at Bungie for over 20 years working on both Halo and Destiny. She also created Bungie's 10th anniversary party artwork in 2001.
Lorraine gave some background to her 2021 artwork on Twitter on January 7, 2022. She wrote:
"I've always loved how Norman Rockwell seemed to imbue a soul to his illustrations. In my homage to his wonderful "Freedom from want" illustration, I wanted to bring in characters across Bungie's history like I did in my 10-yr anniversary party illustration.
Below is Norman Rockwell's "Freedom from Want" painting depicting a traditional American Thanksgiving meal. You can easily see where Lorraine's inspiration came from.
"I couldn't fit everyone in the shot, and figured fans could elaborate on the story happening outside the frame.
Lorraine also provided some of the finer details in the scene. She wrote:
Avery is still alive in my mind, so he is there on the lower left by Ikora's elbow. Top of Myth Warrior's helmet is at the bottom by the Leviathan fruits. Marathon Cyborg AT lower right. Shaxx is putting his drink down by Mara. Devrim is sitting next to Suraya.
For Marathon fans the artwork is made famous for the Security Officer ("Marathon Cyborg") turning to the viewer (appearing to break the fourth wall) with that smile.
A smile which reminds you of something from your past, but you can't remember exactly what it is.
Perhaps he knows what they'll be eating.
"Should have got Chockisen!"
Page maintained by Hamish Sinclair
Last updated March 6, 2023