Tossing aside the paint brush (?) and more! ;)


Above, "dinky duke" (3" tall 3D scanned, reduced and digitally mirrored version of 9" tall "Deputed Duke") in cold cast bronze (bronze powder mixed into resin)cold casting done by Mountain View Studios.

My dilemmas are so small and trite and please don’t laugh! :)


This is what has been “weighing” on my mind lately … directions I’ve been considering. Not to mix it up per say but in a “where/what is more effective” pausing for reflection frame of mind. If anyone would like to send me some outside or words of wisdom input on either of these I’m all ears! Email is morgen@one-horse.net.


My first really big concern of late has been if I should continue painting horses at all for sale. I am thinking I should not for a while. Focus on the sculpting specifically. Before there is a any outcry – and/or for those who have convinced me to take on a commission for them, don’t worry, those I’ll still be plugging away at the commissions. And I do plan to paint at least one of each of my own sculptures - as I”ve been doing, I like to paint the initial ones out there a non-flashy white patterned color so that the body shape can be seen but painted. I have never liked the stress of selling finished horses. And then too there is the factor that I am competing for the same business as my very own customers who bought this same said horse unpainted from me and painted it themselves to sell.. whether they’re selling at that moment in time or not. I may be taking away one of their potential buyers.. it’s not a small dilemma to me. I really do enjoy painting. I really do not enjoy competing against others – I’m into dressage and model horse perf showing because these center around the ‘competing against yourself’ aspects where “perfect” doesn’t exist and thus must constantly work at it… in life, in any competition a win over others generally feels awkward to me though. This from someone who’d done a lot of shows/halter only. It’s just weird feeling. But in real life dressage and in the ever so goofy seeming model performance showing, I love hearing the judges input on “here’s how you can improve” or “here’s what I saw wrong”… & THAT is what I like about competition – trying to make it really tough on a judge to find a flaw. Not trouncing someone else unless it’s a good natured game of something w/a friend and I really tend to lose most of the time there! ;) ANYHOW, I know that painting is NOT supposed to be a competition. I know this. Still right now it has that feel to me and try as I might not to feel this way, I do. I need to pull out of that – it hurts the art imo to be even remotely concerned about if an item is going to sell at all while you are painting it.


There are so many terrific painters out there & I produce so little, I hardly think anyone would’ve noticed if I hadn’t said this out loud at all. ;) It’s just that I think I may start gearing up my website to be more sculpture-centric and start removing photos of painted horses so much. In the time it takes me to paint 4-7 horses (3-4 months! J I just went through this!) I could sculpt a whole sculpture if I spent my days doing nothing but this. My artistic desire lately has been on not producing quantity but on producing a variety. I’ve actually be really intrigued with the idea of doing character studies (akin to exercises you typically see in drawing/painting classes), where I keep one element the same in all sculptures but you should not notice that in the “series” because all else is so completely different about them. I’ve already started on that a little and am looking forward to doing more pieces this way!


I’ve also not made a secret of this but I was surprised to hear some friends never knew this – my larger "life"/"career" goal is to sculpt life sized bronze horses. The costs there start in the XX,XXX digits (I’ve actually recently met with/discussed and toured a facility that does lots of large scale works, including horse and rider monuments– so I have a really great idea now of real costs and what’s really involved in their creation these days - much has improved!). It’s funny, it would be a cinch for example (who’d have thunk!) to make my scanned Bosco into a larger than life sized work (with many months of clay work still but this field is making leaps and bounds like all others in 3D!)... However this is not exactly something I can fund on my own just yet. We’ll see. I’m looking into casting one of my 1:9 scale horses in the nearer future. Possible patrons are always welcome I suppose to contact me. ;)


Ah but no, sincerely, I do want to re-incorporate the section of my website devoted to commissioning sculptures again. I’m trying to think of how to do this. I don’t wish to mislead horse owners, it’s not a small task for me to sculpt a horse & the expectation when they hear “portrait commissions is often of pricing under $1000. It takes me a few months in ideal and very focused conditions and I’d rather not get their hopes up. I don’t want to sound elitist either on the other hand! :) And also in the past when I had this portion of my website I also answered a lot of questions about customizing Breyers or Stones to look like xyz and I want to be clear that I don’t do that at all (actually I guess I never really did but when folks read “commission” in the hobby this is often what they think of so it was probably the #1 question I got). Anyhow, so rambling away over here but this is probably the “biggest” thing I’ve been mulling over since returning from Breyerfest.


I have commissioned finishwork I’m wrapping up. I even have some prepped horses coming back to me I may put color to. But will I sell them or use them as display models? I am thinking ‘display’ right now. Actually I’m thinking more about my next sculptures to be perfectly honest!!! :D


The second item under consideration has been moving most photos of finished horses (at the very least, customers and maybe my own too) to my yahoogroup. In other words no photos of finished horses on my website for the most part - except 1 or 2 as demo models of the scultpures... for several reasons.. But taking it all over to the yahoogroup section & making folders there that – ok, while not as nice and fancy as my album features I’ve got going on now (click on “high res” OR even “low res” for any of these albums here, http://www.artbymorgen.com/client_galleries.htm I’ve got 2 types).... The benefit of yahoogroups hosting it is (a) they might get updated faster if I don’t have to mess around with albums.. every time one new customer sends in a horse, to add it to the album type I’ve been using I need to recreate the whole album. ALSO a problem is that it’s harder to keep the comments with the photos so I’ve been concerned about proper credit to the painter and the photographer. Meaning when I add a new photo I have to bust out with photoshop to add these credits. At least on my yahoogroup the info could be put in or changed I believe on an album. I think folks have given up on the idea that I’ll be updating my photo albums but I still have the “to add” folders going.. it’s just that when I got to add the photos I don’t have the painter/photographer information always. It’s a trival matter really. One I think needs a tad more thought but well, if you wonder what sort of issues a sculptor doing this for a living has.. this is one. Well one that’s worth sharing! Lol! There’s always the big concerns that can freeze you up creatively if you pause to think of them much at all. The same way jockeys refuse to dwell on the dangers as well other than basic precautions. If you really stop to think about the sanity of what you are doing and how many ways it can go wrong? You wouldn’t be able to go on doing it for long. ;)


And with that, off I go, willfully feigning ignorance of my "high risk" folly over here! :) And chewing on such dire life issues. ;) Tx for reading all this drivel, really guys! :)

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