A photograph can capture the image of your horse, but it does not often capture the character or spirit. A painting or drawing takes its heart from the essence of its subject be that a horse, a pet, or a person.
Gunner Wellburn or ‘Welly’ as he is affectionately called, almost won the 2004 Grand National when he led from the first to the penultimate jump only to be pipped at the post at the very last.
Welly is a brave and kind character who also has a wonderful sense of humour. We had quite a fight over who owned my sketch book the first time I attempted to draw him. In the end I won, but only because I presented him with an alternative tasty morsel to eat.
Being a chestnut there’s a lot of drama about Welly and I tried to depict something of this passion through his eye and also through the rather stormy sky behind him. It suggested itself to me and happened quite naturally.
Painting Welly’s portrait was an emotional experience from start to finish. I watched him race on old videos so that I could get a real feel for his spirit, and found that when I watched the Grand National my heart was in my mouth even though I knew the result. As I got to know him I felt passionately that I had to depict his fine character, his quality and his spirit as a memoir that would continue on after he was gone. Something of him will now remain with his owners and for posterity.
Caroline will also consider other commissions, for example cats, dogs, horse and rider, and individual portraits of a family member. A non-refundable 50% deposit is required when placing your order.
All commissions come with our satisfaction guarantee. If you are unhappy with the final piece, and we cannot solve the issue, 50% of the final cost will be refunded. Prices for each option can be found on the Commission Pricing page.
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