Spring/Summer 2013

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Horses in Art Magazine

An International bi-annual publication dedicated to presenting fine art and the equestrian lifestyle inspired by the majestic beauty and love of the horse

Wild Inspiration


Wild Inspiration

Wild InspirationIn the high desert area east of the Cascade Mountains in Hines, Oregon, you will find a spot of something special awaiting you. Corralled and well-cared for BLM wild horses are waiting for caring and experienced horse people to take them to a new forever home.

To help bring attention and awareness to these wild descendants of horses perhaps ridden by Native Americans, Spanish Conquistadors and early settlers, a couple of artists have chosen to visit this site and put their talents to a good cause. Traveling to one of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Horse and Burro short-term holding facilities, artists Laura Jo Sherman and Beryl Foust-Hovey took on a personal project to promote these horses who came from the vast rangelands in Southeastern Oregon.

“We would like to provide public awareness of the Oregon mustangs with our paintings. We have made several visits to the corrals and have seen beautiful horses in excellent condition. As captured horses, though, they will never be released back to the range so we would like to encourage adoptions. When we arrange to publically show our paintings we will make arrangements to donate to the horse program,” they explained.

When asked about why they decided to paint these horses in particular, the answer seemed to come easily. “Availability. The corrals at Hines have a road going all the way around the outside. The road allows you to take your time and stop and photograph easily the different groups.”

Wild Inspiration, Horses in Art magazineAlthough it would be nearly impossible to pass the feeling of seeing these wild horses in action on the open range, Sherman and Foust-Hovey admit it is much more practical and easier to see them in the corrals. The wranglers have them divided into groups, such as mares and geldings of certain ages, mares with foals, younger horses, and older horses. While this is beneficial for the artists, it is also quite beneficial for potential adopters. As Beryl said, in reference to a visit during which a couple was choosing a horse to adopt, “It was very interesting to watch the couple selecting and being helped to find just the right horse. The staff of three managed this efficiently and with as little trauma as possible. I have already made two paintings of that horse they have now named ‘Shok-ka.’”

Laura Jo added, “It’s also good to see horses that were living wild, rough lives on the high desert range enjoying the comforts of easy food, water and safety. It was also very comforting to see the BLM staff managing the facility act as concerned professionals who put the horses first.”

Now retired from a career in Human Resources, Beryl Foust- Hovey is able to devote all of her time to being a professional artist. Having minored in Art during her college years, her art was then put on hold until her retirement. Her pastel paintings are now shown in galleries and shows in Madras, Wild Inspiration, Horses in Art MagazineSpringfield, Sisters, Tumalo, Bend and Seaside, Oregon and she is looking forward to adding her newest additions of this BLM Project to her portfolio. Some of the inspiration for doing these wild horses came from the simple “beauty and condition of them. It was easy to be artistically inspired by them. There is a large variety of ages, sexes and of course color in the horses.”

Laura Jo Sherman agreed. Retired from a long career as a public school art teacher, Sherman moved to Oregon and became a professional artist. She has been represented in several galleries and shows in the Bend, Oregon area and has earned awards and acceptance into juried shows throughout the country. Recently, she was honored to have won an award for an equine painting in the Pastel Society of New Mexico Show.

Choosing to paint the horses that inspired them each, both artists have chosen to do them in pastels. Foust-Hovey explains, Wild Inspiration, Horses in Art magazine“I have used oils, watercolors and colored pencils but found my niche when I enrolled in a pastel workshop in 2006. I like the freshness of the medium and unlimited selection of colors.” Sherman also prefers pastels because “the process is the most exciting for me. It makes for a very creative experience. I use pastels in an expressive manner to creature textures and movement in my paintings.”

With their talents having no shortage of inspiration to draw from, both artists hope to showcase their paintings of these BLM horses to promote adoptions and also to simply bring attention to them. “We hope we will encourage at least a few people to travel to the corrals and adopt their special horse.”

As a follow-up with the artists, the new owners of “Shokka” reported “he loves to be scratched” after having him in his new home for ten days. As with this horse and his new family, there are many positive stories happening with adopted mustangs and burros. If you are interested in becoming a new, positive chapter in a wild mustang’s life, please visit www.blm.gov/adoptahorse/ for details on their programs, policies and future adoption dates.

Wild Inspiration, Horses in Art magazine




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