Thursday, June 26, 2014

2 weeks, 2 shows, 5 paintings, 1 thunderstorm

The last two weekends were horse show weekends for me, two days at Reins of Life in South Bend, IN and three days at the Fox River Valley Pony Club horse trials in Barrington Hills, IL. First off, the most important thing from the artistic point of view–I completed five new Aquabord™ paintings while I was at these events tending my vendor booth, so I’m here to show them off! All are available for purchase, $35 each plus shipping. Details on my website.

"Sparring”–Two bachelor stallions from my mustang trip.
“Pursuit”–Two more bachelor stallions. Go, boys!

“Scope”–eponymous scopey bay from last year’s FRVPC show.

“Effortless”–Another bay, this one from Fox Valley Saddle Association mini event.

“Elegance”–Classy palomino from last year’s FRVPC show.   

It wouldn’t be a benefit horse show at Reins of Life therapeutic riding center without some mud, if one were to go by my last three years' experience. But who would have thought, from this gorgeous vantage point?

Reins of Life’s pristine dressage ring. 
Until you looked here–

Except for the puddle at A
 But no matter, Reins of Life had what I love to see–very happy riders! A smile says it all.

 And one talented little rider may be going horse shopping soon.

Cutest kid on the cutest pony will soon be outgrowing her steed from the looks of her legs!

Fox River Valley Pony Club had been dodging rain successfully for the entire week, so setup in the field was a breeze. Nothing worse than trying to set up or tear down your booth in the rain. Here’s what it looked like in the dressage warmup area the first morning (all that green and one would think this was Ireland, not northern Illinois).
Morning weather tease
Warmup area gets crowded when you have 250 horses entered.
“Green as grass”
Rain. Wind. Thunder. Lightning. My booth, behind the white truck. It survived unscathed.

Riders who were out on the cross-country course had to hurry back to shelter as quickly as possible. A few of them ended up in the indoor arena, which had already been set up for a big dinner party that night. Normally horses in an arena are an expected sight, but the tables and chairs added an air of oddity to it.
Horses in the dining area!
Shades of red seemed to be popular eventer colors this year. A lot of hot pink among them.
Pretty in pink, two more to come.
Pink was nice, but some preferred orange!
The last day, I took some time to go over to the grass course where the upper level stadium jumping was held. I got some great photos, and also some quite unexpected ones. You never wish a bad round on anyone, but when it happens it can make for some pretty dramatic stuff. Here’s the sequence, starting with a successful effort–
Here’s what it’s supposed to look like.
Here’s what happened to another pair:
Rider can see trouble coming…

Uh oh…

And don’t forget to let go of the reins…

 Both horse and rider walked off the field and didn’t look any worse for wear, just disappointed that they had been eliminated. As Chicago Cubs fans like to say, just wait till next year!

1 comment:

  1. GREAT post, Alli! Just the kind I like to read. But, don't forget to include your name in the title or sign at the bottom. I found who you are by following the link to your website.