My horses are passionate about goin' green...as in going out onto the green pastures! My horses are feeling pretty passionate about the grass coming up in the pastures! Its almost almost intoxicating to them which is why you have to ease them into it. Working horses are often turned out to pasture to destress because horses need to have that grazing time to relax and be their best.
What is your equivalent to green pastures? What makes you feel refreshed and at your best? What is your passion? Your work? Are they the same?
Many people dream of being passionate about their job or creating a job about what they feel passionate about. I have had my passion become my work. I have done that twice actually and am working on a third time around although different 'passions'.
Early in my marriage my husband and I bought an 80 acre working farm. We took it from a run down non productive farm to a thriving horse related business by turning our passion into our work.
I ran into a snag when I could not think of the horses as commodities. Even though our farm business revolved around my passion it did not take into account my emotional attachment. I just could not make that step from thinking of the horses in terms of money or profit and loss.
I feel pretty grateful that a path has opened up in front of me that is allowing me to again pursue my passion as my work. As a professional artist I can 'collect' as many beautiful, interesting animals as I want as paintings, reference photos, sketches and commissions and not worry about the individual animal's resale value on the open market. I assume most of you reading this have to be animal lovers too and you know a pet or horse means more to you than what price it can bring in. All of my dogs and most of my horses were rescues so their monetary value is not in proportion to their inherent value to me.
In the marketing classes I took in previous careers 'value added' was a term often used. During our stint when we were market gardening and farming organically the produce was considered 'value-added' because people are more likely to pay a premium on organic food. So I think of how my artwork shows the beauty in the mixed breed, the rescue, the aged or the mutt as well as the dolled up equine, feline and canine show versions. The value added is that little quirky expression or the kindness in the eye of your pet captured in an oil painting.
Foal I 11 x 14 oils ~~ sold~~
Foal 11 x 14 oils
Libby, 9 x 12 oils
The Silver Lining, 11 x 14 oils
I had a victory today with Rhythm, a recent rescue. I had to keep her off the green grass today because of how rich the spring grass is-- the horses are limited during this time to avoid health problems. Well she didn't agree that this was in HER best interest! I wanted to ride her for a bit but she thought going out to pasture was a better idea. She has a tendency to threatened to buck - my guess is someone has ridden her very roughly. I've been working with her to give to pressure and to get the release as the reward... so doing the right thing becomes easy. Or thats the idea. She tested me several times but I was able to reward her for moving forward when cued lightly so she can know that I am not going to hotdog her... I will ride light and she likes that very much (who can blame her). So it was a productive day.
I am waiting for the second rescue from AC4H to arrive tonight or tomorrow. This one will be my daughter's horse, a young QH mare. This will be a 'project' horse also but it is so fun to unlock the puzzle and in the process get a nice horse out of it.
I also began moving into my new studio space this past weekend. I will now have a gallery side and a working studio side. I LOVE my new work space. I already painted these paintings over the weekend just for fun. One will be going to a friend who helped by donating to Another Chance 4 Horses so we could bring home the young mare for my daughter. The other two are for sale either at etsy or at my studio in Canton, Ohio.