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Posts Tagged ‘cows’

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Cowgirl was done in oil pastel on handmade paper and measured 10 x 13 1/2

One of the side benefits of doing art fairs is that it not only exposes your work to collectors and patrons but also to various galleries and art centers. As such I usually get at least one or two invites to display and exhibit a year. While flattering, this is not something that I have ever taken advantage of. Last year in particular I was approached more than usual and it got me to thinking that maybe this is something I should take a hard look at.

In case you’re wondering why I haven’t leapt at the chance to have exhibitions … well, I need to sell my work in order to pay my bills and feed my critters. And I am fortunate enough that my originals sell fairly easily. Many right off the drafting table. So the idea of creating a body of work (20-35 paintings) that can’t be sold for perhaps up to 2 years is the kind of thing that makes me curl up in the fetal position with a cold sweat in the wee hours of the night.

So why now?

Because I pay attention to opportunities and the fact that I’ve been approached so often recently leads me to wonder if this might be fate’s way of saying “pay attention.”

So when asked recently if I would consider it, I said yes.

And Because Everything Is More Fun With Friends

While pondering a theme for an exhibit I came to the conclusion that maybe I’ll do a solo exhibition in the future but for this one I want to bring in a couple of friends. Both artists are people that I get on well with. Our personalities as well as our art mesh well and I’ve done exhibits and events with both. One of them (Barb McGee) and I hatched the plan for an exhibit called “Cowgirls” (namesake painting above which hatched the idea in the first place) and have been kicking it around for years

Proof God Has A Sense Of Humor

So just after I became settled to the fact that I’ll need to create 10-18 pieces of bovine beauty, (Barb McGee and Carol Herden will flush out the rest) and not sell them for at least 1 1/2 years I get an email within the hour.

An email with the word “cowgirl” in the subject line.

An email from a collector requesting the purchase or commission of cow art.

Nice one God. Very funny.

Note: We are still in the planning and paperwork stage. But if all goes well we will be doing more than one exhibit.

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So when I asked a friend (who’s also a good customer and dear to me like family) whether they still had Hereford’s he said no, but offered to keep an eye out for me. I really didn’t want them to go to any trouble and said as much. Partly because I had something very specific in mind and partly because I hate to be a burden.

What I wanted was some hairy Hereford cattle. But the hair couldn’t be too long or too short. It had to be juuuust right.

Yup … it’s just like Goldilocks and the 3 bears. Except I’m not a cute little blond girl who’s into petty larceny. So I suppose my fairytale would be called Grayinglocks and the 5 cows. And instead of worrying about being eaten by bears, my only worry was about being slipping in the cow poop soup and then being drooled on by the curious cows. Yeah, it’s totally like a fairytale.

Low Expectations
So as I mentioned previously I went into this particular photo safari with low expectations. For many reasons.
1. I wanted hairy cattle but not so fluffy they look like toys. This late in the year that is what you usually get.
2. They are feedlot cattle which means nose to tail filth generally. Not pretty in pictures.
3. They are in a hoop building meaning poor lighting at best.

But in the end it was awesome. Awesome because the farmer was an absolute doll and had separated 5 head for me from his herd of over 700 cattle. I don’t know what criteria he selected them on but they all had white and clean faces unlike so many of the other feedlot cattle. They were in a smaller clean pen (well cleanish … keep a cow in an enclosure long enough it it’ll get covered in poo.) that I was allowed to enter and move about them. And they were in the open so as you can see by my photo they are struck ever so lovingly by the sun.

At any rate the farmer went well above and beyond what I was expecting and went to far more trouble than I deserved. So now I will definitely do a painting at some point, if for no other reason than to give him a framed print just to say thank you.

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Peek-A-Moo (Cow Hunting)



Can You Spot Bessie?

So you know I’ve gone on cow safari before but never been cow hunting until now. While the premise is similar it is a bit more difficult.

Cow Safari is wandering amongst a bunch of cattle who are kept in a small enough enclosure as to make taking pictures easy.

Cow Hunting on the other hand, means the cows are far more free range and require some extra measures to actually get a decent photo.

I’ve been walking the bike trail located near my hometown which in a previous like was a railway. I started about the time hunting season began because despite wearing my dayglo-please-don’t-shoot-me hat I didn’t feel all that secure walking the gravel roads by the farm. The other reason is that the days are getting colder so instead of walking early morning or late at night I know walk mid-afternoon when temps are at their warmest.

The trail is lovely and I have very much been enjoying the tree, little birdies and cattle. They are getting shaggy and so they have that wonderful woolly hairdo that I love so well. I have come within a few feet of the cattle for weeks now and finally decided to take my camera along. So of course on this day they did not cooperate. I had to climb through brush and bramble and still got nothing all that usable.

Ah but it felt so good none-the-less.

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