I set up my easel late this morning. There were a few horses still on the track but it closed shortly after I arrived. The special thing about Saratoga is the calming atmosphere for both people and animals. Maybe it's all the negative ions produced by the ancient trees or maybe it's the pristine northern air.
Halfway into my painting I began to really listen. The barn behind me opened the back stall doors and I could hear the horses eating hay, walking around the stalls, blowing the dust out of their nostrils, chewing on the window frame and raking their noses against the screen. An occasional whinny, foot stomp or cough broke the atmosphere. All the while a warm breeze pushed billowing clouds across a sky that could have been painted by Munnings.
|Quiet Afternoon, 11"x14", oil on panel|