Tuesday, February 16, 2010


That's what came to mind as the two boys spent a large chunk of the afternoon grooming each other from head to toe. I couldn't believe how long and how thoroughly they went at it! Both were completely immersed - who knew two yearling colts could have that kind of attention span!

They had a slightly stressful morning. Really, these two have the life right now, but every six weeks they're expected to be big boys, when the blacksmith comes for their trims. When they're young, we just do the foals in their stalls, with walk-outs as necessary to check them. Today I finally decided it was time they both grew up, and stood in the aisle on the mats like the big horses!

They handled it pretty well. Leo had one good temper tantrum with a lurching half-rear, but Spider out-did that performance by basically falling/lying down. That's the ultimate cop-out for a horse, and I think they always feel somewhat embarrassed by it! Fortunately it was a slow-motion sort of deal, where he just kept sinking, until he found himself in a heap. He was certainly very good for the rest of the job!

Monster was next, up at the other farm, and after her trim I rode her. After that it was back home to work Gracie and do stalls, then a short break to watch another Canadian Gold at the Olympics before heading back to the barn to feed. That left the evening for painting! Tonight I started a new commission, working from a challenging reference photo - not that that's ever happened before! This one is a 16 x 20 oil on masonite panel.

Yesterday I started my "challenge" painting. My friend Elizabeth McCrindle of Scotland and I both want to improve our humans, artistically. When Elizabeth showed some photos from a trip to Ayr Racecourse this past weekend and said she now had lots of photos of the jockeys, so no excuses on the challenge. It made me think that I also have several photos of the riders, so we both agreed to do one this week. You can see the start Elizabeth made on her blog, and in keeping with accountability, I'll post the one I started here. I've got a much easier one than Elizabeth, I think - I find helmets really hard, and I found a shot with no helmet. I'm not going to tell you who it is. If you think you know, I want to hear it. Just a very rough start so far!


Elizabeth McCrindle said...

Laughed at Spider's little incident just hope he does'nt do that in the starting stalls lol....funny thing was thinking about him yesterday there was a horse called Sammy Spider running at Newcastle lol.You've made a great job to your jockey I was glad to have a helmet on mine....less face to paint lol

Linda Shantz said...

I figured the face-on was easier too Elizabeth - you've got a tough angle!

I couldn't help but laugh at Spider yesterday too - silly boy. I'm waiting to hear what his name will be - the owners call him Batty so it will have Bat in it somewhere, I'm sure!

Diana said...

Beautiful photos of the boys and great story of the ferrier experience. You have a great start on your jocky.

Judy Wood said...

That is too funny, the story about Spider. Honestly, teenagers! What can a person say? Luckily you have a good sense of humour.

Linda Shantz said...

Thanks Diana!

It's still making me laugh, Judy. The funniest thing is he just kind of stayed in that heap - "So are you going to get up now?" – and then he clambered to his feet, and stood like a champ from then on!