Tag Archives: stablemates

Cold Snap

I was really looking forward to getting home and enjoying some hobby time, but weather and life had other plans. We came home to a freakish cold spell- the coldest it’s been in Oregon in my lifetime. Since cold can wreak havoc on primer and fixative, I’m limited in what I can work on.

To add to that, I can home from California with a bad case of poison oak- so bad that my whole face swelled up and one eye was swollen shut! So my downtime pretty much involved lying on the couch icing my face. Luckily, I also got some steroids to take so I was feeling (and looking) better pretty quick.

I was jonesing for some hobby time in general, but I also wanted to get back to work on the portrait horse I’m making for my trainer. I base-coated him in acrylic and I decided to try doing a bit of pastel on him and see how the fixative behaved in our freezing temperatures.

Adding pastels

Adding pastels

I figured that if the fixative did go wonky, I would only need some sanding and another coat of acrylic to get him back. Luckily, the fixative worked pretty well, so I was able to make a lot of progress on this guy.

After a few layers in

After a few layers in

At first I made him a little too red, but I was able to back it out a little and I think I got the nice red bay I was going for. I did several layers of pastel over a weekend to get his body color where I wanted it, and I’ve been using my free time on weeknights to work on his acrylic details.

Working on his intricate blaze

Working on his intricate blaze

Ducky is a somewhat challenging horse to do a portrait of because he has a very intricate blaze, and even his leg markings have pretty unique edges. I’ve been doing a lot of layers followed by buffing.

Duckys blaze

The temperatures are still mostly below freezing, but they’re supposed to come back to the usual 40’s later this week. Even with my success (and/or luck) with fixative on Ducky, I don’t want to try doing primer, or spraying fixative on a grain-prone color like palomino. So those projects will have to wait.

Detailing his markings

Consulting my notes while working on details

But I’m sure glad I was able to make progress here! Hopefully I’ll be gifting this little Ducky next week.

New Stablemate Molds!

As you probably already know, last weekend was Breyerfest. The lucky attendees got the chance to own the newest molds in Breyer’s stablemate line. So far these guys have only been released in this one special run and are commanding hefty prices online, but I’m sure hoping they’ll be out as regular runs soon.

Following the event’s Denim & Diamonds theme, each new mold has a silly name. I believe they are the first Stablemates to have real names since the G1 race horses. There’s Chrome:






and my personal favorite, Rivet.


Images from identifyyourbreyer.com, taken by Janice Cox

As I said, they’re currently pretty expensive. But especially when the regular run becomes available, these guys will be a great new world for mini customizers like me. I’m seeing Rivet in a red dun…

MEPSA Donation Horse Update

I’m happy to report that I’ve got one of my MEPSA donations done and the other one is in the home stretch. Just in time too- the Year-end Champ Show is just around the corner. I sent in my qualifiers last week. Next year I’m hoping to seriously improve my photos and get serious with the monthly shows.

The appaloosa is all done:

MEPSA appy 6-11-13.jpg

I like how his appy markings turned out. I did them in a combination of acrylic, pastel, and pencil.

Not too long ago I was thinking I’d need to re-start the Morgan. He was looking really orange and not behaving. But I’m really glad I stuck it out, because this is what he looks like now!

MEPSA morgan 6-11-13

His pastel body color is more or less done. I did the mane and tail last night and will be continuing his other details this week. I’m rather chuffed with his transformation. He definitely gets the ribbon for “Most Improved.”

Big thanks again to everyone who voted for their colors!

Tiny Hoofbeats Live

While I was lounging poolside in Cabo, my friend Caryn was showing her minis at Erin Corbett’s Tiny Hoofbeats Live. I had limited wi-fi in Mexico, but I did manage to receive a very exciting email from Caryn that afternoon. Two horses that I painted double NAN qualified in both breed and workmanship.


Aylwen is a G3 Highland Pony that I painted into an olive dun for Caryn. I finished her up last fall as part of a trade. She shows as a Highland Pony, and in addition to her Workmanship win above she also took 2nd in her breed class!


Vortex is a wild leopard appaloosa that I painted for Caryn’s husband, Martin. He won ribbons (and a NAN card) at NW Congress and Rose City Live last year, but this is his first blue. And like Alywen, he also took 2nd in breed! And Caryn said people were asking who painted him, which is a huge compliment and made me feel very warm and fuzzy inside.

I also sort of had a hand in Caryn’s two biggest wins of the day, a Workmanship Championship and a Breed division Reserve Champ. Those were both won by her little Morab mare, who I won in the MEPSA Championship show last summer. She was the prize for Novice Halter Grand Champion, won by Kettil Blacksmith. Since I only keep my own work (and Caryn loves Arabs) I gave the model to her.

This model was painted and donated to MEPSA by Cassie Black

This model was painted and donated to MEPSA by Cassie Black

Congratulations Caryn! I wish I could have been there. Next year!

Finished Gifts

Things have been pretty quiet around here. I’m finished my crafty gifts and don’t have a lot of motivation to start more crafts, or blog. I think part of the reason I’m not as motivated to blog is that I’m using WordPress all day for work, so it doesn’t seem quite as much of a down time activity.

I was very happy and proud to deliver both my portrait of Violet and my 1:48 scale Dr. Who to their recipients. I added pictures of the finished portrait to my Bay & Black gallery.

The wee Dr. Who is at home in his terrarium, exploring what really does look like an alien planet. He looks so good, I’m so happy I decided to make him!

terrarium who 01

terrarium who 02

I’m not sure what my next project will be, but it will definitely be after the new year. Soon I’m off to California to celebrate Christmas, and I don’t see any hobby time happening before January at the earliest. I hope you all have lovely, safe, happy and warm holidays.

Tis the Season

I’m back from New York and working hard on the several handmade gifts I’m doing this year. I usually do a mix of homemade and bought gifts, depending on time, ideas, and general motivation. One thing I’m making this year is a portrait of my friend Liddy’s new horse, Violet.

violet portrait pix - right

Just before I left for Thanksgiving, the model was starting to move from the awkward early pastel layers to at least the vicinity of realism. She has a ways to go, but I’m feeling confident that I’ll have her done in time for Christmas.

Here’s Violet after about 5 layers of pastel:

violet progression 01

At this point I was having trouble visualizing her because of the white primer mane and tail, so I switched from pastels to acrylics for a bit. I always find that useful for the final pastel stages because it helps me see where how the colors will look on the finished horse.

violet progression 03

Ah, she’s starting to look like Violet now! Here she is with a few more layers in both media:

violet progression 02

I’m pretty pleased with how she’s turning out. She’s a gorgeous horse, and while I know I can’t do her color justice I at least want to achieve a resemblance of her beautiful coat. I think I’m getting there- she needs a number of layers in both pastel and acrylic, but I’m relieved to have her looking at least vaguely Violet-like by early December. Hopefully by the end of this weekend she’ll be even closer to done.

Tiny Things

My Christmas gift portrait cob now has hair! Said hair needs work, but she looks a lot better than last month when she had no ears and a wire sticking out of her butt…

Kettil Blacksmith is still in the pony hospital, but he’s recovering from Brokentailitis and will hopefully be ready to hit the show ring in a few weeks.


Meanwhile, awesome hobby bloggers are busy making tiny masterpieces. EG of Last Alliance Studios cooked up some delicious looking sandwiches and Nichelle of Desktop Stables made a whole library of wee books. Seriously, the first pictures in these two posts will give you a real double take.