The Art of Painting Horses

Call me the luckiest artist on the planet, living in Saratoga Springs, New York, where the best of the best horse racing takes place in July and August.

Every morning from 6:30 a.m. until 10 a.m., I get to place my sketching pad on a large trash container just the right height with my box of chalk and I just sketch away. Are they masterpieces? Hardly. But, they are exciting fleeting images.

Imagine watching horses of every color and as high as seven hands high, handsome and beautiful, shined to sparkle like new cars, not an ounce of fat on them. I can see every muscle move in tandem with the other muscles, amazed how hundreds of pounds of flesh delicately balance on those relatively skinny legs.

And, those horses know we are watching them. Some wink back at me. Others turn and come over to the rail. Their riders, some jockeys, some trainers, some owners, some employed riders, are all friendly and happy to see all of us admiring them.

The Saratoga Race Course is, of course, heaven for people-watchers. Thousands of people are here and the excitement is so powerful you can almost pat it into a ball and fling it up to make stars around the sun.

A member of the New York Breeders Association, I am at the track or the back stretch (where lots of action happens up close and personal) either in the morning or during the racing day, which goes from 1 p.m. post to somewhere around 6ish. Once in a while, they start to a 3 p.m. post, but not very often.

Don’t want to stop your racing day at 6 p.m., you can go over to our Saratoga Harness Track for night racing under the stars. There you also get fabulous food, sit beside a glass wall to watch the horses, and the betting windows are less than 25 steps from your table.

Even if I don’t go to the track, Saratoga has buggy rides, so horses and wagons go down my street while I sit on my porch in the evening. These are beautiful horse carriages with all the trimmings and people, often in fancy dress, ride through our city, old street to old street, looking at the sites.

If you have not yet been to Saratoga Springs, New York in the summer, it just may be a treat you give yourself at least once. Come, and I guarantee you will be back. Give me a call (518-587-9999) when you are in my city, and I just may be able to carve away a few hours to show you the best of the best in a city that is the best of the best. Heck, we even won “Best Small City in America,” or some such honor on a huge rock that sits in front of our City Hall, which just happens to be where the American Bankers Association was founded. And, the potato chip was invented here at one of the restaurants on Saratoga Lake. We also gave the nod to Apple Pie Ala Mode. Imagine that! Saratoga Springs, junk food pioneers!

Hope you are having a great summer!
Barbara Garro, MA, NY’s Painter of Flowers
Abstract Synchronism Artist
and Author of “Grow Yourself a Life You’ll Love,”

468 ad