Vishnu - Lakshmi paintings
“Whenever a devotee wants something from Lord Vishnu, Lord Vishnu first of all considers whether such a benediction will ultimately be good for the devotee. Lord Vishnu never bestows any benediction which will ultimately prove disastrous to the devotee, He is, by His transcendental nature, always merciful; therefore, before giving any benediction, He considers whether it will prove beneficial for the devotee.”
(Srila Prabhupada, Krishna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vol 2, Ch 33)
Vishnu is the Deity worshipped in the Vedas. According to Vaishnavas, He is the Supreme Lord, and is the only entity primarily praised in all true scriptures. Vishnu is the Lord, is the Cause, the Protector, and the Destroyer of all Creation known and unknown, and is responsible for all bondage and liberation. He is beyond the scope of all that is destructible and indestructible, and His worship is the purpose of one's existence; He is free of all flaw, and has an infinite number of good attributes.
Vishnu is often pictured with his consort, Lakshmi (also called Sri), and usually has four arms. Each hand holds an emblem of his divinity: the conch, discus, club, and lotus. A curl of hair on his chest signifies his immortality, and he wears the jewel Kaustubha around his neck.
He is usually depicted with a dark complexion, as are his incarnations. Vishnu is often shown reclining or asleep as he awaits the next annihilation and renewal of the world. His vehicle is Garuda which can spread the Vedic knowledge with great courage. Lord Vishnu rests on the bed of a huge serpent, called,"Shesha Naga" which represents the sleeping universe.
Brahma, Vishnu, Siva
Brahma is the controller of nature in the mode of passion; he is the engineer who creates the universe. Every universe has its Brahma, who appears as the first created being in it.
Vishnu, who controls nature in the mode of goodness and sustains the creation, is directly the Supreme Lord. In the spiritual kingdomof God, where everything is everlasting, the quality of goodness exists without either passion or ignorance.
Siva, the lord of the mode of ignorance, devastates the universe at the end by his wild, all-annihilating dance.