Watercolor Horse Painting Ideas: With Stories Behind and Tips
Each form of art begins with an idea. Artists work on finding their ideal ideas first, and then work on numerous ways to make that idea be a real artwork. So finding an idea is as important as making the artwork itself. As an artist who deeply enjoys painting horses in watercolor, i wanted to share some experiences about finding watercolor horse painting ideas!
Below you see two examples of my series called Freeze Frame from 2018: Pulp Fiction and Breaking Bad, as you might have guessed already. A film and a TV show which became as important to me as fables and ancient myths were to past generations.
I basically treated the body of the horse as a screen and placed these known stills on it. I enjoy observing how people react to these works very differently. Some pay only attention to the shape of the horse and react confused about the figure imposed on it. Others blur out the title of the movie scene that they recognize and ignore the horse.
I assume I speak here to animal lovers, to equestrians. We love horses and we feel close to the ones we work with. But we are also aware of the fact that we project our dreams and fantasies into them and spin them into our stories as if they were humans of a different shape - and we do know: that's our brains doing - our horses are horses and in their horse world. Sometimes I notice how much we talk about them and it's amusing to me to imagine that they might actually forget about our existence once we are out of their sight.
These thoughts lead me to the idea, to frame movie scenes with the outlines of horses, to superimpose one on to the other - melt them into each other. Not ANY movie scenes, but famous ones, the ones we quote and we mention to describe life situations. And the horse does not care, it is acting like a vessel - a screen for a projection.
Horses are often part of heart warming romances and heroic history telling. Traditionally they signify wealth, power, strength and elegance. All our thinking - the horses couldn't care less about their own magnificence. That I think is touching. Both - the movie scene and the horse - are painted in a transparent way, which offers an either or - you choose what you want to see. Watercolors are wonderful for this kind of effect: Apply thin layers and let the white underneath shine through it all.
And again: Less is more. especially if one deals with a heavy load of story and symbolic meaning, the material stays better light and easily digestible. Otherwise a "too much" shots all associations down. The more you have to say, the clearer you want to be.
My Tips on Finding Watercolor Horse Painting Ideas
1. Use your biggest dreams and find the most loaded images to illustrate them - play big!
2. Only what really moves you will turn out to be impressive as art.
3. Don't get lost in details, in what you don't need to tell your story.
4. Remember that your art work is complete when you've said all you wanted to say.
5. Give your horse painting ideas a few different tries.
6. Sometimes you have to go on a hunt for a good solution.