Making art is that itch that is never fully scratched. The monkey on your back, the muse that whispers into your ear, “You gotta make art! Do it now!” This can especially happen during your day or night job, as does the urge to ride...
Like making art, for some of us, the unending fascination with horses, the illogical need to be with them, is a lifelong pursuit. This means not only to ride, but to immerse yourself into every aspect of horse existence, to experience their interactions and relationships with humans and each other. It is to know their weird blend of wildness and domesticity. They are like a drug that certain hearts and souls crave, an addiction, an affliction, that perplexes those around us. For me, this comes about through the practice of Dressage, the discipline of English riding that results in the ultimate dance between horse and human. For those of us forever learning the steps, our riding is seen by the uninformed as merely going around in circles, as exciting as watching paint dry.
The unrelenting passion, the risks taken, the hard work, the ecstasy, heartbreak and everything else in between, is shared by artists and equestrians. Oh, the undying hope of reaching, considered by the pragmatic, as totally unattainable, unrealistic goals, having little to do with logic or economic sense, such as:
Hmm. Those endless decisions, where practicality is laced with support of addiction. To buy brushes or groceries? To go to the dentist or get your horse's teeth floated? Equine dentist appointment made, human not.
Dressage riders and artists love shapes and patterns and are hyperconscious of details, otherwise seen as being persnickety and perfectionistic. Why else would a person spend endless hours attempting to ride a perfect circle, movement or test? Why the fascination, in painting the same things over and over again? What is seemingly boring is really about being in the zone.
For those of us with both passions, there may be no hope for our coming to our senses. But, so it goes, with other addictions. I remember my ski bumming days, surviving on free hot chocolate and crackers, in between meager paychecks. But, what would life be, without choosing to do what you love?