Running Free concept drawing
A piece with a horse and a piece with a human have been on my list for a while. I didn't want to just make a horse and rider, I needed some kind of story for them to be acting out, something interesting to be happening, some sort of situation the characters would be reacting to. That's basically how I see my sculptures, as characters reacting to or acting in situations.
I had spent a few hours with a friend and her horse, DaVinci, a while back to get some reference images. While perusing the hundreds of photos I took, I found a few shots that caught my interest. One of the things most surprising to me about my visit with DaVinci was how nuts he went after being set free in a corral. He is normally a jumper, trained to run a course jumping hurdles. Very disciplined. But in the corral, he was free of the confines of the stable, free of the saddle, free of any requirements. He jumped and bucked and raced around the corral in utter joy and freedom. Soon his owner started to run with him just outside the railing of the corral, a huge grin on her face. It was wonderful to watch the two of them running together, free of the confines of life, running free together.
So that is the inspiration for this sculpture. Of course I had to make the image more dramatic, turning the woman into a dancer with a flowing dress, dancing and almost flying along with the prancing horse. My work has to have some fun in it, after all. I also wanted to highlight the connection between the woman and horse, because that is as important as the freedom. They are running together, experiencing the freedom together. I think that is much what happens when a rider takes their horse out for a fun ride, having a shared experience.
In the design she is reaching out to to touch the horse, and they look into each others eyes with exhilarated expressions. That’s one thing I really want to stand out here, the facial expressions. I don’t want bland or neutral expressions. The view should be able to easily read the character’s emotions from their faces. It is as much a part of the sculpture as the poses of the bodies, and that should give the sculpture life.
Let me know what you see in the sculpture, what excites you or makes you smile!