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  • Writer's pictureKathy Winkler Studio

I LOVED this Young Longhorn Bull !!!!!

But, first, a little story about him.

Jerry and I were visiting a Longhorn ranch in Central Texas, close to Austin, and, of course, I thought I had died and gone to heaven. Beautiful Longhorns are like potato chips; you can’t just have one. I have had ranchers tell me that their collection of longhorns started with one, but then they added another one, and another one …then, as rumored, the rest is history, much to the delight of a longhorn aficionado. The owners showed us around and talked about some of their Longhorns, pointing out that the gorgeous young bull lying down on the ground just got his very own concubine of 13 or 14 lovely young heifers and cows. The owner said that his senior bull was away in another pasture for the time being with the remainder of the herd, because the senior bull takes a dim view of cows being taken away from him.

After walking around looking at this beautiful bevy of bovine, I walked to within 20 feet of the young bull. The owner said it was o.k. to move closer to him. I asked him if I could sit close to him, while not invading his space. I got the o.k., so I sat down about 6 feet from him. This bull could have cared less that I was sitting relatively close to him, as he was surveying his lovely ladies, while they were grazing. I loved this bull’s eyes and the way he knew my presence but chose to ignore me. I loved the way he just looked out thoughtfully with a peaceful, easy feeling. Naturally, I wondered what he was thinking. So, camera in hand, I began snapping photos and taking notes about his personal characteristics.

On our return to Virginia, my life took a detour. I was working out, without stirrups, in an indoor ring, one of my warmblood horses who suddenly got in touch with his thoroughbred side. Making a long story short, I bailed off him because I knew he wasn’t going to stop. My choice was to suffer a catastrophic injury, or maybe only break a limb. Well, I was rewarded by my second choice with a compound fracture of my right humerus, and all the ribs on my right side were fractured as I dove from my magnificent 17.2 hands, young warmblood. It was going to be two weeks before surgery, and I decided to paint the bull that I couldn’t get out of my mind. Well, I had no connection with my right arm, as a loose appendage, which if not in a sling was prone to flopping around. I had Jerry set up a card table and my table easel and painting supplies.

I concentrated so much on the inner being of this bull, I forgot my predicament - a nuisance of an unwielding arm that had to be contained in a bunch of stacked pillows, and which was directed by my left arm to apply paint to canvas.

Down the road, I had an art show at the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces. I had included this painting in my show, along with other reproductions. The executive director of the Foundation asked me if I minded if she took some of my work, i.e., reproductions, to the Cattle Growers Association Conference. Well, she did, and the editor of the New Mexico Stockman’s Journal passed by her booth, and, she said he quickly turned around and came back and picked up the reproduction of “Peaceful Easy Feelin”’ and said, “that’s the cover of the next issue”. So, a phone call followed, and “Peaceful, Easy Feelin’” graced the February 2008 issue, and that was only the beginning of my relationship with that journal, but that is another story.

Since then, I have been very fortunate to be represented by The World Art Group, a publishing house for artists, where my images are sold world-wide. “Peaceful, Easy Feelin’” has been reproduced several thousand times world-wide.


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