Wednesday, September 2, 2009

"Easy Rider" Rides Again!

Yes, I did manage to fit in some artwork yesterday, and here’s the proof!

Because I goofed off on the computer on Monday, I had to spend some time clearing away papers in the studio before I could begin, but still managed a respectable 45 minutes of drawing time before heading for the barn. It was a tough choice whether to work on the pony and dog painting which is still in the drawing stage or “Easy Rider” which needed some revision. I chose Easy Rider because it’s a pencil drawing, and once I get those legs fixed, I can quickly continue with the shading.

It’s had a bit of an unfortunate history. I took the photo at a dressage show several years ago and just really liked the relaxed look of both the horse and rider; hence the name. After experimenting with different background thumb nails, I settled on one and began the drawing. I showed it in the Equine Art Guild forum as a work in progress, and one of our members, who is an upper level dressage rider, immediately commented that the horse wasn’t going well and his legs weren’t in a balanced position. I admit that these comments really took the wind out of my sails, and my enthusiasm for the drawing plummeted. She was right, of course, but it took a while (like a year!) for me to regain interest in the drawing and to start work on it again. Then it had a mishap with the vacuum cleaner, and the paper was bent a little. I got busy and put it away again. Meanwhile, I kept looking for just the right reference photo that would help me put those legs in the proper position for a nice passage.

When I saw a picture of the Breyer model of Keltec Salinero, I knew I’d found my reference. It was perfect and I quickly ordered it, along with a few other Breyers for “models” you know. wink wink. And above you see him, all set up on a shelf by the studio window in just the angle I needed. The drawing board was set up by the window as well, a piece of tracing paper was put over the the drawing, and I proceeded to revise the legs.

Here’s the revised drawing with the original reference photo beside it so that you can see the difference in the legs. Once I get those legs revised and refined, I’ll just trace them onto the drawing and proceed to work on the shading. My next scheduled art day is Saturday. But, I wonder if I can hold off that long...

On another note, our local art supply store is closing for good, done in by catalogs and the new Michaels. It’s unfortunate that these local businesses just aren’t able to compete in today’s world, and I will miss this one even though they have downsized twice in the past and no longer carried much of what I use. Last week I made one last trip to the store, hoping to get a few of my favorite fake mongoose brushes, but it was already pretty well picked clean. I came home with two brushes and several large scraps of suede matboard which were a real steal at $3.50 each! They are all nice colors for horse paintings, too. That’s inspired me to think about doing some pastels again which can be quite stunning on suede matboard.

And, finally, here’s a bonus for you. Every year about this time, the deer visit our yard almost daily to check on the apple crop. This fawn wandered into our yard over the weekend one rainy day and was trying to figure out a way out. Across the street were two does, another fawn and a small fawn that was jumping and playing just like we see foals doing. Unfortunately, by the time I grabbed the camera, the deer were already moving on so I wasn’t able to get any photos of the playing fawn. He was pretty cute. I just wish they didn’t eat my plants when they get older.


Judith A. Johnson said...

Wonderful excuse for ordering Breyer models!! Why haven't I thought of that!

Karen Thumm said...

And, it's a business expense, too!

Keltec Salinero is a fabulous Breyer. He's very high quality, accurate and beautiful, too. I had fun picking out a few more in different positions that I figured would be useful for drawing aids. Smarty Jones is another in a flat out running pose.