Monday, August 13, 2018

Reworking Pieces

New changes on a custom

It is very rare that I rework an idea, but this piece kept speaking to me from his little corner of the studio room. He kept whispering that he was unfinished. So, after trying to unsuccessfully ignore him I finally decided to rework him a little.

I believe he was correct. He needed a little more time spent with me at my desk.

Full view of the new changes


What he used to look like

Monday, August 6, 2018

Its Like This....

Ouch! Sometimes Life is Like a skeeter.


It's like this....

.....one day you're cruising along fine with all your ducks in a row and the next, you're being pelted by skeeters and you flail and then scare all your ducks loose.

I've lost all my ducks it seems. Well, the row they were in is askew and for a while I sorta liked seeing them spaced out a bit. There is something satisfying in letting things just become unorganized because you gain new perspective.

I have been writing, just not for the blog. It's stuff that has skeeters in it and I kept questioning if I were heading in the right direction creatively. I asked for a sign. I guess you can say I got one. This juicy gal reaffirmed that I'm on the right track creatively this past weekend. Even though I can't share some of what I'm working on, I can say my ducks are slowly getting back in line.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Full Force

NEW Reveler resin by Sarah Rose
Currently taking offers. EM: jenndanza@gmail.com.

These last several days I've been off and running with work full force. Getting sick as a freelancer puts such a crimp in things. The worst part was having to lie in bed all day and do nothing while my body recovered. Stopping or lounging is such a foreign concept to me. I am thrilled to be back working overtime.

Here are some of the pieces that were recently finished. The new Sarah Rose "Reveler" is for sale and I am currently taking offers on him until this Saturday, April 28, 2018.

Detail of Reveler's head.
Sarah did an amazing job sculpting this guy!
PACKED with details!


Sarah Rose "Jezebel" resin.
Commission. My commission books are open.


Head shots of the Sarah Rose resins.


Maggie Bennett micro lounging


Had fun with her spots.
My commission books are also open to micros!

Friday, April 20, 2018

Welcome News

Photo © Christie Richardson
Reserve Champion Mini Gaited Breed at
Rocky Mountain Spring Fling

This week I received such welcome news from the other side of the country. There were many horse shows being held last weekend across the country and I'm thrilled that two piece I had painted did well for their owners.

I enjoy hearing about the horse's careers and when the good news comes after being sick and down for a while, it's even nicer. Thank you owners for sharing!

If you are curious to see more photos of both these horses you can find many photos at the following links:

RCH Mini Gaited

CH AR Workmanship "Strawberry Jam"

Currently booking commission for May. Please contact. jenndanza@gmail.com

'
Champion AR Workmanship
Lemmonade Live
Photo © Tim Justice

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Eighteen Plus


Felt like a crumbled cookie.

Eighteen plus days...that's how long this sickness has held onto me. Where it came from I have no idea, but it sure is a stickler. I've never had an illness last so long, nor have I been away from my studio desk for such an extended period of time. It wasn't fun. I couldn't do much of anything, but lay in bed.

Now, of course, there is the catching up on commissions and repair orders and the overwhelming feeling that I'll never catch up. Where to start? Just start somewhere and keep moving. Onward and cheers to better health!


Broken Chaney resin visiting my studio.
Photo © Chris Wallbruch



He repaired nicely!
Repair books are open.
Contact: jenndanza@gmail.com

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

More "Old" Talk


My latest painting that
did very well in the show ring for it's owner.

Now, don't get me wrong, I love good competition! Just recently, a Bacchus resin sculpted by Emilia Kurila that I had the glorious opportunity to paint, did extremely well in the show ring. That was exciting to see in person! The new resins and customs that have hit the show rings, as of late, have been amazing! They have propelled our industry into new and exciting heights. Artists are being pushed to do more and be their very best. To see the human spirit excel with their talents amaze and inspire me.

Now, I hear an artist had a real horse scanned and those scans have become three dimensional. As exciting as that is (and yes, I won't lie, I will want to paint one) I don't know what that will do for all the current pieces. How can a judge NOT pin the scanned horse as the winner of all? After all, sculpt tops workmanship in halter in our world right now. That resin will be as close to Godly perfect as possible.

And I guess this is all well and good cause it causes a happily little frenzy among collectors, onlookers and artists. And that is always sorta fun for a while. All of us vying to get their hands on the latest piece. But, in all this frenzy there are holes being created. Gigantic holes. Where do we go and what do we do with these enormous holes all this frenzy has and is continuing to create?

Now, I won't lie. I've been constantly thinking of how much fun it would be to hold a vintage type show. Something old but new and something just....fun. After much discussion on my Facebook page (The Healing Heart Art ) after the last blog post, I'm coming to learn that many out there are not only yearning for such old fashioned shows, these shows are slowly becoming reality and are being exceedingly well received. VERY well received.

And now, my mind turns even faster on this idea!

More of my personal show string
that are out of show circulation.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

It's Just Too Old

Most, if not all, too old for showing.


I was thrilled in February of this year, thanks to the inspiration of the NaMoPaiMo Event, to have finally finished my "Utopia" resin. Putting on the English tack, that was made specifically for him over a decade ago, felt great and I was excited for his official studio photo shoot.

He came out wonderful! I was so happy with his color and the saddle truly did look marvelous! Being absolutely thrilled, and dare I say, even feeling as giddy as I remember when I was a kid, I popped the photos up on Facebook to share with the event group. Many lovely comments came in, but one stood out and still resonates with me as I pen these thoughts today. "Oh, that's an old one!"

Yes, I suppose the "Utopia" resin is an old one. I'm embarrassed that it has taken me well over a decade to even GET to painting him for my own personal collection. I have many "old" ones in the stock room that have yet to even be thought of for painting. Just not enough time to paint them all. But where did the time go? How did so many of these pieces, that were so sought after and "hot", become so "out of fashion" so quickly? Where have we been? Where are we going? What has time done to our hobby?

Between the realization my "Utopia" was indeed too old, to a recent blog post by Sarah Minkiewicz-Bruenig, to a shared experience with my own younger cousin at a live show, I too, have begun to stop and question what is happening in our hobby and where this is all leading us.

Now please understand, I have no solid answers to any of this. I'm an old boat trying to stay afloat in new waters that seem to change as quickly as the wind. This old boat knows what the green ribbon epoxy feels like in the hands and how utterly impossible it is to sculpt with. I know of the promise Milliput brought to young customizers back in the day, but it too failed us and our needs. Firing up a stablemate's appendages with a candle flame in order to move it is now a tale of folklore.

"Did you REALLY do that to customize?" Yes. And, collecting ten dollars for a model was just as hard as trying to collect $375 for a blank stock horse resin today. That part seems to have stayed the same. I doubt one will feel as if they have enough for their acquisitions. Too many horses, not enough money. That will never change, no matter how much the horses are, but it's the "where we are heading with our attitudes" that make me take pause.

Where ARE we headed? I questioned this fully after I took my younger cousin to her first model horse show. She never came back.

First enormous customizing attempt.
Circa 1986 Stock Horse Stallion.


The Green Ribbon Epoxy
was all I had back in 86.


My young cousin fell in love with my models and a few of the newer Breyers I had in storage became hers. That spring we got her new stable residents named, gendered, and assigned breeds all for the start of a show career. She dove into all of this happily and couldn't wait to attend her first novice show. I was thrilled.

On the morning of the show I presented her with a new model. He was a surprise and I couldn't wait to gift her the most beautiful Man O War #47 mold I had ever seen. He was attained in a body box from a friend and he was certainly prettier than the one I attained in 1987 as a child. His chestnut color had so much shading and the light spots were just perfect! Some worker at the factory the day he was made was in the zone having one hell of a good day.

It was love at first sight!

Man O War #47 from the 1970s-80s


As the day progressed I sensed her disappointment. Shows can be disappointing when the steeds aren't in the top three, but she wasn't even close to 10th place. She had new stuff and the breed assignments seemed spot on. I quickly realized that there was no way in hell she could even place with her stable of new horses. How could a novice show against a OOAK Peter Stone OF? A Breyerfest model has no chance against a Breyer special run of 20.

Even though the novice tables at this particular event were always smack dab in front of my repair table I never paid attention to what was ON those tables. Amazing OOAK pieces, specials and highly collectable factory pieces all being shown by children. Their tables were filled with amazing collections and it was obvious that a young shower, just like a seasoned shower, had to pay to play.

What was worse was that there were no new connections made. All these young model horse lovers and she made not one connection. I had hoped she would, but competition in the novice ring is as fierce as in the Open ring and everyone was far too busy with show strings to make new connections. I understand that, but it still saddened me. Looking back I have to wonder what we were thinking bringing a Man O' War to a show. But he was beautiful and back in the day we all couldn't WAIT to connect with someone, ANYONE who loved model horses just like us.

Man O' War didn't even make it into the ring that day. I suggested she just enjoy him at home. He stood zero chance against the selection of OFs in the Thoroughbred class at this event. In reality though, he stands zero chance anywhere in today's hobby. A beautiful piece that has no chance because, let's face it, even with his beautiful coat he has zero fashion sense in today's world.

Where do these horses go to show? How many beautiful but "unfashionable" pieces stand in collections? How many other young potential collectors and showers have decided to just give up because they just couldn't afford to keep up and they haven't made real solid connections in the hobby? What brought us to this "keeping up" stage of our hobby? Where are we going and who is driving?

I'm afraid I have no answers. I only have this feeling that somehow something is missing. It has all changed right before our eyes. The excitement of seeing a blank Moody "Utopia" resin for sale has been pushed aside for the excitement of newer resins that will one day, perhaps even by next month, be pushed aside for the newest of the new resins. The days of just loving a model cause it resonated with you in your heart, as my Utopia had for decades, seems to be somehow...do I dare say....vanishing. I realize its changing drastically every February when our community comes together during NaMoPaiMo and we collectively celebrate our love of model horses.

What one needs to know is that your February in NaMoPaiMo was how us veterans enjoyed our hobby. That was our normal. That feeling of togetherness and artistic exploration, no matter what the skill level, was always vibrant and healthy. And in today's world that ends on March 1st.

Perhaps these old eyes just can't see that all this change is all just a natural progress. It happens all around us daily. Maybe our hobby lost it's innocence and grew up and now all we can do is visit our childhood rooms every February. I honestly don't know, but I can tell you for certain that we are all missing out on something great.