Canyon Horses


#185/365 Paintings

Wild horses are generally born in colors that reflect the mountains, prairies and canyon-lands around them. Browns, reds, dappled rock, grays and white snow covered peaks. They characterize the majestic, torrential nature that raises them. Many wild horses are dying of starvation and thirst and killed mercilessly. The justification is overpopulation. But horses have served our communities and country. They’ve taken bullets in war, they’ve taken people on their backs to new lives when the old one’s were destroyed. They’ve tilled the land for crops. The list goes on. We owe them a lot more than capture, neglect and slaughter.

So, I decided these canyon horses would reflect something with a bit more pizazz… like Christmas or a crazy fashionable, fun outfit. This way, they reflect how I really feel about them in addition to their wild mountains and canyons.


Pueblo Adobe

Copyright Niya Christine

#181/365 Paintings

I purposefully didn’t crop this painting because I want to show off this 140 lb. handmade rough cotton paper sketchbook — it is so perfect for the current theme. Rough surfaces that nearly emulate the SW landscape. Highly absorbent, and captures the deep pigments of the SW. I’m pretty delighted with the discovery.

This house is referenced from a pueblo adobe home. Short and stout — low windows. But most pueblo communities had no greenery and the houses can be long. As many as 100 rooms. They were made in areas where there aren’t tall grasses for the buffalo. No buffalo hides for shelter but they did have dirt, rock and straw to make brick material. Many had kiva’s underground. Since they dissolved in the rain over time, you would see these structures built in very dry areas like west Texas and parts of Colorado, Mexico, Utah, Arizona.

Speaking of dissolving, I visited the history room of the Mill Valley library to study the first adobe built in the 1800’s by the man who founded Mill Valley. More about that tomorrow. But what struck me is that now archeologists are searching for structural remnants under the adobes that have dissolved into the earth. They have some fancy technology for such digs. Digs! Digs! Pun.

Silliness abound today.