As long as I can remember, I’ve been creating art. Around high school, I developed a love for cartooning, animation, and manga. Up until then, I had drawn mainly realistic things, or at least as close to realistic as I could get at such a young age. It was this shift to cartooning that made me realize how much I loved telling stories with my art. This made sense in hindsight because I was always a prolific writer as well as an artist.
When I was very young, I remember creating “books” out of pads of post-it notes, complete with hand-lettered text and full illustrations. In middle school, I wrote an entire novel in a Marble composition book. Well, it was probably more like a novella, because it was a wide-ruled notebook, but at the time it was much longer than any other story I’d ever written.
Telling stories and creating something beautiful to look at have always been my goals as an artist. If I can combine those two things, then that’s all the better as far as I’m concerned!
My goal with my Horses of the world series is to tell the story of the horse, its contributions throughout history, and how deeply intertwined the history of the horse is with the history of humanity. This way, I can combine the subject I’ve loved to draw since I was very young (horses), with storytelling aspects. I choose both well-known and very popular breeds for my illustrations, as well as less known and less popular breeds. Many of the lesser-known breeds in the series are endangered or have dwindling numbers, like the Misaki and the Akhal-Teke, or are even extinct, like the Quagga. By using these breeds and combining them with world maps, I hope to inspire learning, discussion, and conservation efforts for the breeds that can be saved.
Horses have been part of human history since prehistoric times. They have been used for food, transportation, war, and to help shape civilizations. When someone sees my art and sees a horse breed they have or haven’t heard of, along with a map behind that breed, it opens up a conversation. Children and adults love to learn about horses and especially breeds they don’t know of. I hope that my art encourages giving back to these amazing animals who have given so much of themselves over the centuries to help humans.
My mission as an artist is to bring joy, to start conversations, and to inspire curiosity in those who love these animals as much as I do. I hope that my art and my words will inspire the animal lover in you, and open a dialog with other horse lovers so that we can make sure these beautiful animals don’t disappear.