Saturday, December 31, 2011


From Big Guy [aka. Fat Bastard] and Baby ...

From Pumpkin ...

From Bruno ...

From Lucy and Desi ...

From Betty ...

A good dose of humor ... always ...
And from me, of course ..

We all wish you a most healthy, Happy and Prosperous New Year !!!                                                                          

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Hmmmm ... Looks Like My Riding Was Better than My Painting Today

Masked the perimeter, then painted graded aureolin wash

Realized I had to mask the entire thing, then started painting very dark green washes [yes, I know it looks black here]

After about 5 dark washes, I removed mask

Roses = aureolin with aureolin + pink + cobalt blue  for shadows
Leaves and stem are mixes of phthalo green + quin. gold + quin. burnt orange 

Bit more playing with the rose petals, and tone down the leaves a bit

I had to paint something today ... ANYTHING! So I did some sketching, and decided to finally get this rose out of my system. [I've been thinking of painting it for weeks] It's small - only 7.5 x 5.5 inches, and I just about went cross-eyed finishing it this evening. I find yellow and black very hard to work with. Any way, here it is. And as ALWAYS, any comments or questions are most welcome.
As for riding, Bruno and I had a very good time today. He is finally getting the concept of "inside leg into outside rein", and he is carrying himself better all the time! :)

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Christmas Guest

Miss Betty, heading for the garden

Closer inspection

Bruno, out for a munch on the back lawn, wearing his "apres-workout" cooler

Amazing ...  they largely ignored each other

Bit of a sniff and closer look on Bruno's part

... and then they go their separate ways

Betty, up close and personal

And a bit more garden time before we go inside

I've ben doing a lot of dog-sitting for relatives this fall and winter.  Betty arrived Christmas Day.  My aunt [who was taking care of Betty for a sister] brought her here, as my aunt was going to another sister's for dinner, and that sister didn't want Betty at her house as she sheds [Betty, not the sister!] It's all mildly convoluted.
I finally got to ride today, as the weather was quite fine and the ground was not frozen. So out Betty and I went. Bruno was fine with her, though he did pretend to be afraid when I was on his back. All horses practice this art of evasion to varying degrees, feigning fear in order to rattle the rider, and thereby avoid "work".  Anyway, it was so good to get outside and ride, evasions or not!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

NOT the Christmas Goose ...

Just a few sketches I'm playing with while the painting composition percolates in my head. I am really keen to do something, or several somethings, with geese.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

An All-Round Great Day

Bruno, having a well-deserved munch on the back lawn

His working end ... at least, he's learning that it's the working end

Desi, in mid-flight, heading to the field

The girls, out in the field

They LOVE to play out here ... when Bruno's not around

Play-fighting over sticks

Interesting action shot

Lucy, quenching her thirst, while I clean and re-fill Bruno's bucket

Not only did I finish a painting, to my satisfaction, today. I also had a great ride on the Lad. For several reasons - his previous training and work as a pacer, arthritis in his hocks, etc. - he has had difficulty with the concept of listening to my leg and yielding to it. For the longest time, he was physically unable to do so without pain. Now that his hocks are eased, his back is no longer sore, and he is much more flexible and at ease with his body. But he STILL did not like to yield to the inside leg. So I tried the "PC" technique, first on the ground and then in the saddle. PC = praise and carrots, and works like a charm. Today, for the first time since he's been here, he yielded to the inside leg. No big deal [you think]! It's possibly one of the most basic and necessary steps in training a horse to start carrying himself elegantly, whatever the riding discipline. So I am very, very proud of my Sweet Babu today!!!
My sister's boxers, Lucy and Desi - the Ricardos - like to come out and watch. And as soon as Bruno is finished and untacked, he's let on the back lawn as a reward. Then the girls go flying into the ring and field beyond for some serious play-time. So, for all of us today, it's been a SUPER day!!!

The Complete Pictorial Saga of Misty ...or ... How to Paint a White Horse

Reference photo - it looks like it was taken in an indoor arena.

Mask, then a wash of thin purple-grey.

I start adding some thin glazes of local color.

Add more mask around her muzzle, and do more darkening of existing colors.

I need a background to judge how dark to go with her coloring. I chose  soft pink, orange and blue - to maintain the softness of the painting, and to compliment her coloration.

I darken her eyes and add more pink/orange to her muzzle.

I've painted around her mane and forelock to bring them to notice.

The mask is all off, and I am working on the bridle. I don't want it as dark as the photo, as it will overwhelm the painting.

Here she is - DONE!!!
Photo taken outdoors.

This is at the same stage, with indoor lighting.

Well, she is finished, and [surprisingly] I am quite pleased with the finished painting! Her owner is up in northern Alberta, visiting family for the holidays, so I won't get her reaction till the New Year.
As ever and always, if you have any questions about color, technique ... whatever, please ask. And ALL comments are most welcome!
Even though I am a complete and total humbug at this time of year, I wish all of you and your families a most happy and wonderful Christmas! And Peace and Love to you all!!