Laura J Smith Portraits in Pencil
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Barbaro - America's Champion
© 2007 Laura J. Smith
Reference Photo taken by Kris Johnson

I should call this one, "A Jealous Rage" because my motivation to do this portrait was out of envy from a pencil drawing another artist had posted on another website. It was a head shot and the detail and texture the artist accomplished just made me completely question my own abilities. I knew then I needed to bring my work to that level.

It is for that reason I embarked on this particular portrait. The goal? Texture. A shiny eye, the long hair of the forelock and short hair of the face reflecting the sun. A stitched leather halter. A soft mushy horse muzzle... I wanted it all!

Let me tell you this was very very hard to do! Yesterday when I finished it I scanned the portrait into my computer and there he was. Barbaro. He looked so alive that I just began to sob. It was unfair that he looked more alive on my paper than in real life. =(

Though my motivation was purely educational I learned that my heart doesn't seem to care about what my head wants! I've grown accustomed to his face.. I now know every hair, every wrinkle and marking. I'm happy.

I've always wanted to share this song because it is exactly how I feel about him and the whole experience. It was Beautiful!