Friends from across the pond!
I love photographing cows. There’s nothing quite like lying in the grass peering up at the big wet nose of an inquisitive cow. It’s the best way to truly know their personality, after all character is what my paintings are all about. However it’s not always possible for me to meet my subjects in person- or is it cowson? Especially when painting lesser seen breeds. I had my heart set on painting a Texas Longhorn for a while now but was struggling to find them in the UK. I was getting rather disheartened by the whole thing, until one day browsing Instagram!
I came across Ross Ranch Horns. The profile was full of stunning pictures of beautiful Longhorn bulls, cows and calves in a spectrum of colours. One, problem is his Ranch isn’t exactly down the road. In fact it’s 4081 miles as the crow flies in Texas. As much as I’d love to hop on a plane, and jet off to the US, that just wasn’t a possibility. But I loved this herd! So I sent Will Ross, owner of Ross Ranch an email to see if he would be prepared to let an artist from the UK paint his cows. Luckily for me he accepted (once he was sure this wasn’t some kind of crazy scam that is!) and gave me permission to use his own photos for my painting.
So without further ado let me introduce you to Dusty Grub and Cut the Deck or as I like to call them Dusty and Dec!
I hope you’ll agree that these two make a bit of a stunning pair. I was amazed by just how many colours and patterns this breed has. Not to mention those extravagant horns. Will Ross breeds pedigree Texas Longhorns, concentrating on quality rather than quantity. I know very little about the breed, but can’t imagine they come any better than these beauties! And of course like all my herd, the have buckets of character!
Dusty Grub has been at Ross Ranch for 4 years now and is a particular favourite of Will’s. According to him, she’s the Molasses of the cow world, aka SLOW. She likes nothing more than to laze around and eat- but then again, who doesn’t? She may not be the most energetic, but she is sweet as pie, and very social, loving nothing more than to be hand fed a treat, and you truly can see that friendly nature in her eyes. Not to mention her coat is like nothing I’ve ever seen.
The really funny thing is, she has never made any noise! Can you believe it? A cow that doesn’t Moo!
Two years ago she gave birth to her calf Cut the Deck, son of Ross Ranch bull, Stacked Deck (also know for his laziness) The team were quite ready to have another slow mover, however this little calf was full of energy and curiosity from the get go. He was a spunky calf and full of energy, running, playing and sniffing at everything! Now almost two years old he’s living a life of luxury on the show scene, spending his time being pampered and scratched! He has started to inherit Mum and Dad’s laziness however that works out well when he’s being showed. He even take’s his breakfast in bed, well that is he takes his meals lying down!
I just fell in love with this pair, and am overjoyed with the painting. Their coats and markings let me in to a world of colour. This painting has everything from brown, yellow and white to pink, purple and blue. Plus it tells such a relatable story. Dusty’s loving, if slightly exhausted, expression of a new mum, paired with the bright eyed eagerness of Dec just four days old, and experiencing everything for the first time!
You can own this stunning Mother and Son as an open edition print, available to buy now
But the fun doesn’t stop here, after all Dusty and Dec are just two members of the family. Watch this space!