Monday, August 26, 2013

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Happy Mustang, Kigers!!! Painting #439

"Into The Light"
Adopted Kiger Stallions
6 by 9 inches Watercolors
by LindaLMartin Artist
Limited Edition In House Signed Prints 11 by 8.5 inches Available Via MustangADayChallenge Etsy Store
Unsigned prints Available on Linda Martin's Fine Art America Store
These are beautiful Kiger stallions adopted from Burns Oregon in 2011.

Kigers are one of the most sought after wild horses in America. This herd only originates from the Kiger Mountain and Riddle Mountain HMA Ranges. Kigers are currently the only herd  managed by the BLM that consistently has a 99% adoption rate.

The reason for this high adoption rate  is more than careful management it. It is the careful  dedication of the private sector owners and fans in promoting these beautiful Spanish style mustangs as performance and pleasure horses.

Keep in mind that Kigers are only true Kigers if they were from this range or they are the offspring of both parents that came from either of those two ranges. Thus far Kigers have proven themselves in all forms of competition after adoption including driving, combined training, hunter classes, dressage, reining, competitive trail and endurance, ranch and stock work, gymkhana, 4-H and pleasure. Kiger Mustangs are range specific and usually only come in 6 colors with little or no white markings.  Kigers are growing fast in popularity in Europe and especially Germany where they are valued and bred for show and pleasure.

The most frequent Kiger colors are Dun and Grulla. Other colors are Strawberry or Red Dun, Light Bay with no primative markings, and rarely solid black and gray.

 A special thanks to Photographer and Kiger owner Amanda Wilder for the reference photography and for members of the Kiger groups on Facebook for helping me put together this collection.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Happy Mustang, Aries, To The Heart of A Mustang. Challenge Painting#437

"Aries"5 by 7 inches Watercolor
by Linda L Martin Artist
Prints are available
Fine Art America

I was so excited when Kathryn Barrett visited my Mustang A Day Challenge page on facebook a few weeks ago. It was through her contact that I was able to add this beautiful mustang to the Mustang A Day Challenge. I started following Kathryn’s video blog on the training of an older Mustang in 2011. She named this beautiful roan stallion, from Twin Peaks HMA in California, Aries.

 The most amazing thing about what she was doing with Aries is his Age. He was 12 at the time she began training him. This is something that is near and dear to my heart because so many people try to say that a wild horse over the age of 7 cannot be trained or made useful in captivity.

This in my opinion puts older wild horses who are considered excess in jeopardy.

Sometimes the older horses, such as Kathryn’s Aries, are removed from the range at an older age. Generally a horse like Aries would be gelded and shipped with other geldings to a contract facility in the mid-west where he would live out his life in thousands of acres of grassy pasture with plenty of forage and water. A gentle life where he would only be touched or even see humans once a year to trim feet and make sure the health of the animal was good.

But what happens when these contract facilities are filled to capacity? What happens when, like in 2012, fewer and fewer acres were available to lease by the Bureau of Land Management because the contractors were needing to use the pasture lands for a more rewarding economic ventures in order to sustain their families?

Aries’ and Kathryn’s story is an amazing journey of challenges and over coming. She highlights the possibilities and gives a realistic picture of what working with older mustangs is really all about. It is with great pleasure; and I have to admit it, I’m just thrilled to have the opportunity, to Paint and Share Aries’s portrait. The entire story of  Aries and Kathryn's 2 years is on-line in youtube.

To the Heart of a Mustang can be viewed starting with the pilot episode here:

See Kathryn's first interaction with Aries here:

Episode 2 is when she brought him to the farm for the first time:

You can also see images of Aries  and ask Kathryn question about her experience on Facebook at
A special thank you to
Marcie Lewis for the reference photography of Aries.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Happy Mustang, Lisa Wood's Shawnee, Challenge Painting#436

5 by 7 inches Watercolor
by LindaLMartin Artist
SoldPrints of Shawnee are available on
Fine Art America
Here is the story of Shawnee as presented by Lisa Wood's and was first told  by Lona Patton on the Wyoming Mustang Group in Facebook.

 According to her barely visible brand  this sweet gentle mustang mare was born in 1991 in the Agusta Mountains in Nevada. Shawnee subsequently went through an adoption auction at the Palomino Valley BLM Facility the same year. She was sold as a nursing foal with her dam. Her dam was aged at 7 years  at the time and was suspected to have been sold as meat as she was never documented to have been seen again.

Shawnee was passed from owner to owner. She was valued for her splashy pinto markings that Lisa told me in July, was called " Medicine Hat". In 1994 it seems Shawnee's life stopped and she was religated to a 12 foot by 12 foot enclosure by an inexperienced owner who regularly paid her board. " When I added my quarter horse to the boarding facility, the two became stable-mates. I got permission to work with her, but was warned that she was mean , ugly, stupid and untrainable." Lisa stated.
Lisa and Shawnee
Photo provided by Lisa Wood
and used by permission.

This didn't stop Lisa.  She worked with the mare.  Even though Shawnee's feet were abscessed and she had scabs over her eyes from lack of care and too many flies, as Lisa spent time and patience with the mare her feet became sound, her eyes healed, and her fear turned to willingness and her true gentle spirit emerged.
According to Lisa,  Shawnee had a strong maternal gentleness that helped her  formed strong bonds with humans and other horses. This mare thought to be untrainable was actually slow to anger and "seldom becomes alarmed".

Lisa convinced the previous owner to sell the mare to her for $1.

Shawnee has racked up quite a number of achievements:
In 2001  Lisa and Shawnee did  3,000 miles in cross country riding including  56 miles in 2 days across a BLM managed desert with no water.  According to Lisa, Shawnee showed no signs of dehydration or weight loss at the end of the challenging crossing. The trek that started on the west coast ended in Virginia.

"Once we arrived in Virginia, a fancy riding club invited us to join a fox hunt. Wearing my trail-beaten clothing, Shawnee her loud tri-color coat, we set off. Only as the first hedge appeared did it occur to me that the sport involved jumping. I clapped my hands over my eyes and prepared to meet the ground. Shawnee calmly stayed with the herd, and jumped perfectly. At the end of the ride, the hunt club members were seeking to replace their hunter-jumpers with well-behaved mustangs."

According to Lisa this wonderful mare is not only good with other horses and people but she is great with children and inexperienced riders as well. " I dont own her." Lisa told me, "She owns me! That is Medicine Hat Tradition" she pointed out.

A special thanks to Lona Patton who first shared the story of this mare. For those who don't know Lona, she is amazing Photographer in Wyoming. Lona is a dedicated mustang owner and works tirelessly to help find adoptive homes for wild horses and educate the general public in their care and training. Her daughter is also doing amazing things and is a credit to her mom. Thanks Lona!
You Can see some some of Lona's work on her photography page:

Reference Photography for this painting was provided by Lisa Wood.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Band of Mustangs from Virginia Range, Nevada. Challenge Painting #434

New foal on the Virginia Range
9 by 11 inches Watercolor
by LindaLMrtin Artist
$250.00 for more information
Prints available
A special thanks to Anne Hall for her reference photography. Anne follows and documents the wild horses of the Virginia Range in Nevada.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Band of Mustangs from Virginia Range, Nevada. Challenge Painting #433

"Life Skills"
Virginia Range Wild Horses Coming up from Water.
6 by 9 inches Watercolor
by Linda L Martin Artist
Only 20 Signed Prints in this Run.
Contact me at for information
A special Thanks to Anne Hall for the reference photo for this painting. Anne is one of the dedicated independent photographers who travel all around the Virginia Range documenting the wild horses and their conditons.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Band of Mustangs from Virginia Range, Nevada. Challenge Painting #432

Spring Break
Mustangs At Water on the Virginia Range
9 by 6 inches Watercolor
by LindaLMartinArtist
Signed Prints available for $35.00 each
contact for information
A special thanks to Anne Hall for providing the reference shots for this painting. Anne is one of the photo documenters that follows the wild horses of the Virginia Range in Nevada