Kārttikeya, the god of war and the general of the armies of the gods, is the younger son of Shiva and Parvati according to most Puranic legends. In the Gayatri hymns, he is called by various names, Kumāra, Kārttikeya and Skanda. In the South he is popularly known as Lord Murugan or Subrahmanya.
Varying iconographical representations show him either like the image here or with six heads and a normal body and limbs. Standing besides his vehicle, the peacock, he stands naked with the sky as his clothing. He wears the kind of jewellery popular in the south. Necklaces of varying length adorn his body. A garland of wild flowers hang down to his knees. Resting against his body is a long, pointed sula. A bright halo behind his head, makes the painting aglow.
The brilliant hues of the peacock are presented in natural colours. The royal blue and the rich green make most of the bird. In its claw, the peacock holds a snake, its enemy. Yet, the serpent is also the symbol of Kārttikeya's descendence from Shiva, as snakes are associated with Shiva.
The background is painted pale yellow for the effect of brightening up the painting. The foreground hosts a lot of features e.g. architecture, hills and mountains and foliage. It also gave the artist scope for various colours and imagination.