Sam & Lynn’s horse

Sam and Lynn's Horse.jpg
Sam and Lynn’s Horse – Cynthia Maniglia – watercolor and ink

You must do the things you think you cannot do.” – Eleanor Roosevelt …

The last time I try to paint a horse here was a disaster. “I can’t paint horses.”

I haven’t done anything serious with my art in four days. Been doing a LOT of cleaning, yard work, unpacking a bit, and decorating. Trimmed our little potted evergreen tree this morning. Finally took my travel watercolor paint kit, medium round brush, Mason jar filled with water, and pad of 140 lb. cold press paper outside to poke around for inspiration.

What to paint? Not a plant or sprig. I wandered about the 6-acre property where we live, towards the Norfolk Island pines and noticed the neighbor’s horses were out.

“I can’t paint horses.”

I parked myself near an old picnic table and started sketching first in pencil, then laying down some pale watercolor washes. I finished with my Micron ink Brush marker and darker washes of watercolor paint.

I must confess … I don’t care much for horses. I am not a horse lover. I like them, alright. But I don’t “love” them. And I haven’t studied their faces, their bodies, their forms or colors the way I look at something like say a plant, flower, pine cone, or the shape of the trees against the sky.

So when I started this sketch and as I was painting it, I thought of this quote …

You must do the things you think you cannot do.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

And I’m glad I did something today that I didn’t throw away, something I wanted to share with you here and now.

Thanks for viewing my artwork and reading this blog!

Maybe tomorrow I will try a horse with a wreath around its neck. I think I am starting to take more interest in these great beasts.







33 thoughts on “Sam & Lynn’s horse

  1. I love it, there is so much to their faces, which can distort the picture, bone structure, eye,ears, nose, mouth…all odd forms if you are not familiar with the horse, but yours looks great. You have captured a moment and the pen/ ink and wash works very well. I have been around horses for 30 years, worked with them and twice a day sort out my three boys….. I still get them wrong, usually it’s the eye for me, too small, wrong angle, closely followed by the nose! Your place sounds beautiful, 6 acres, lots of places to sit and paint?

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    1. I am happy to hear you lik my horse! I don’t have anywhere near the experience you have with this subject. I am trying to find all the nooks and crannies for painting and drawing – aside from my loft space. Exploring still! Thanks, Rebecca!

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  2. I grew up with horses and you have painted a lovely one, with its beautiful arched neck and withers!! the head and face are lovely too; I have seen many a horse with ears long -ish. some breeds do 🙂 I love how you painted your foliage as well 🙂 CHEERS! do More!! Debi


  3. I drew a lot of horses as a teenager, (yes I was a bit horse crazy) and I just want to say you can draw horses. The only wonky bit is the where the ear meets the head, the ear actually goes in there rather than melding into the head. It is amazing how how observation skills from drawing one thing really helps when we draw something totally different. 6 acres of land, no wonder you are so often out doing yard work. You new property looks really lovely, looking forward to exploring it through your pictures. Karen

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    1. Thanks, Karen – I’ll have to study that ear! I was just outside noticing how we need to weed some more. Good activity for weight maintenance, I must say. Thanks for the tips. – Cynthia

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  4. Ah, that velvety green moss on that table. 🙂

    I love what you’re doing here. Doing things we suspect we’re bad at can be quiet freeing, artistically. And fun. 🙂

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  5. You did a wonderful job of capturing this horse! I love it! It’s funny how things can just happen like that…WHEN we let them. That must be the key, right? Just let it flow.


  6. We have them out back too but boy are they challenging subjects! So I don’t run out there to draw them often but I’m glad you did. And now that you’re thinking of doing more, they’ll continue to improve (yes, that is the most obvious thing ever but sometimes the longest journey and all that). And I never thought I could draw anything ever, but it’s amazing what we do when we follow Eleanor’s advice. She could teach us all a thing or two. This is a terrific first go, I think!


  7. I believe your horse is rather perfect, with such good artist energy! I love the mossy table you are using to paint on! It looks like you have tons of beautiful surroundings to paint. More please!


    1. Cathe, you are so generous – thank you. Yes, more to come! You can be sure … and thanks for noticing that mossy table. I noticed the moss too. It was rather damp outside and so was the table – it rained this morning.


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