Dogs, Horses and Art are lifelong interests of mine….
Dogs and horses…. the family Sheltie was my babysitter in infancy, then there were a couple other family dogs. From reading the Big Red series of book I wanted and was given an Irish Setter, and joined a dog 4-H club with her in grade school. That led to AKC obedience (a CD in 1971 was our first AKC title), junior showmanship (qualified for Westminster in 1974), and conformation (showed 20 or so dogs, mostly of my mom’s English Springer Spaniels, to their championships. I also judged Sweepstakes at Springer shows in CA, OR, MI and Canada). I now raise and train my own English Springer Spaniels to compete in AKC hunt tests, agility and obedience. Horse involvement started with riding lessons at a stable about age eight (so long ago it was before color photographs as you can see;-). Then I had a wonderful Arab-Welsh gelding until college, he went on to be a 4-H project for a friend’s daughter.
Art…. my first artwork was “Swing Set” drawn in lipstick on a wall at age 4, according to my mom. I don’t recall that incident. I do remember enjoying coloring books, and I liked doing illustrations for grade school reports (remember the paper that was lined only on the bottom half so the top half was for drawing?). Unfortunately I also did sketches and doodles on other school work… like math… and my teachers noted in my report cards that “Karen often has to be reminded to finish her assignments before she starts drawing pictures”. I continued drawing, enjoyed art classes all through school, and had some lessons. Later in life I studied art books and magazines. And nowadays YouTube is an amazing resource for the self-taught artist. Highlights of my art career are having four oil portraits of National Field Champion Springers commissioned for induction to the Field Trial Hall of Fame, and winning the 2017 America’s Mustang Art Contest with an oil of a mare which competed in the Ft. Worth Extreme Mustang Makeover.