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Nose To The Ground, Issue #001 -- A Beagle, A Weathervane, and a Thoroughbred
August 15, 2004
the beagle-inspired newsletter bringing you the latest from
Hope you are having a great summer. After a wet spring in NW Montana it's warmed up, but no forest fires yet this year. Last summer it was one smoke-filled day after another. Nothing but blue sky so far this month. Horses are in good shape for summer riding. Built a shelter for the fjords; when it rains they stand next to it, don't go in as was the plan. Some training is needed here; something about "You can lead a horse to shelter but you can't ---". The shelter is mainly for the winter when we get below zero temps and high winds. Tough as they are, we feel better having some place for them to get out of the bad weather.
In this issue:
August Article: The Beagle, the Weathervane, and Whistlejacket
A six-foot long steel sculpture of men on horseback graces a wall in our breakfast nook. The silhouette of the horsemen stands out an inch or so from the wall and the shadows produced by sunlight through the window gives a particularly dramatic effect. My wife contacted the artist, who frequents arts and craft shows throughout Montana, and asked if he might do a custom steel sculpture.
Eventually Boo figured she couldn't get to the strange black beagle, and it didn't seem terribly interested in coming to her so she eventually lost interest. We don't always know how animals will respond to something which resembles them. Generally they seem to ignore it.
Whistlejacket was a racing Thoroughbred of some fame and Stubbs was comissioned by the owner to do a painting of the animal. The painting well demonstrates Stubb's knowledge of equine anatomy and the subject is particularly striking against the plain background which was a feature of most of Stubbs' work. The original painting would certainly be a treat to see as it is life size, measuring approximately 8 by 10 feet.
The story goes that as the painting was near completion, Stubb's was working on it out of doors, adding final touches. At Stubb's request, a groom walked Whistlejacket near the artist. Whistlejacket suddenly saw himself in all of his glory on canvas, snorted, and charged the canvas, intent of inflicting serious damage to the "intruder". It was only after a supreme effort that the groom and Stubbs were able to keep Whistlejacket at bay and save the painting.
I guess the motto of this story is to keep pictures of horses away from your horses ( especially life size pictures). Weathervanes, on the other hand, are generally safe from attacking beagles. Four gift ideas here: steel wall sculpture, weathervane (horses or beagles), a reproduction of the Whistlejacket painting, and finally, a very fine book The Horse in Art - (an ideal gift for the artist who loves horses or the horse lover who appreciates fine art. which you can find on our I Love Horses page.
What's New at Your Guide to Gifts for Horse Lovers
As mentioned above, there will be more information added this month relating to horse art and horse pictures, including calendars. Also in our plans is a page dedicated to the art of Canadian Artist Adeline Halvorson. Her last showing was at the Calgary Stampede Art Show. Her acryllics, the bulk of which feature horses, including draft horses are really quite exceptional.
(By the way, make a point to make a trip to the Calgary Stampede next year or at least once in your lifetime. You won't regret it)
See you in September!
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