In the Eye of the Beholder

Watercolor - private collection.
Watercolor – private collection.

Her story came to me from another Equestrian Sister.  A barn fire, a seriously burned horse and a Facebook page.!/pages/Suki-the-horse-burn-survivor/120459564682653?fref=ts

After liking the page, the daily reports accompanied by photos kept me updated and slowly crept into my heart.  Pictures of wounds, skin grafts, and stories of spa treatments and massages.  The courageous mare and her caring owner.  Not sure I would have been financially or mentally up for the challenges that these two have faced.

One day the photo posted stopped me in my tracks.   That picture might have been up for days or months.  But on this particular day I saw something mighty. Her damaged ears perked in the direction of her interest.  Her intelligent eyes, surrounded by skin reflecting her ordeal.  She looked regal, strong.  Daring anyone to question her beauty.   I felt I had to paint her.

Questioning the knowing when to paint something is pointless.  It will just come back like a bad penny.  Might as well listen and pick up the paintbrush.  I reached out to the remarkable woman who tells her story, invoking our mutual friend and asking for permission to use her photograph in order to paint the mare with the mission.

It was not the easiest of paintings. Suki’s burned skin had a rawness and a beauty.  Not wanting to over emphasize the missing hair, I tried to keep kept my colors harmonious.  But while the hair was missing, there was an exquisite shine in her damaged skin.  I’ve painted numerous horses over my artistic career, but I had to carefully follow the contours of her stunning ears.  No familiar smooth edges here.

Our world sets beauty standards for everything including humans and animals.  Painting Suki was a reminder that all living beings are beautiful.  We just have to have the courage to see through the cover.

Have you noticed the beauty around you today?

As Suki would say, peaceful evening everyone.  Another lesson from my art


7 thoughts on “In the Eye of the Beholder

    1. Thanks Charlotte, I am looking into that, and will be sure to let you know. Appreciate your interest.

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