Good horsemanship is built on solid basics…so is good business!
I'd like to introduce you all to Jeanne Maguire Thieme. She has a horse-related business - she is an artist that does beautiful work! Artists deal with same general marketing questions that any horse business does: How do I reach my market? Who are they? and more....You'll see that Jeanne is looking for creative approaches to answer these questions. Welcome Jeanne, thanks for the use of your beautiful artwork on my website and for sharing your story!
In 2nd grade I drew a horse galloping in an open field. The leg wasn’t right. I crumpled it and put it in the wastebasket in front of the classroom. I watched 2 students rush to the basket, pull out my wrinkled drawing, bring it back to their desks,spread it out to gently smooth out the creases, and then carefully flatten it in a book to take it home with them. I watched in astonishment and at that moment realized that I wanted to be an artist and I wanted to draw horses. My classmates treasured my work and that felt good. I drew some more, and some more, I painted some more and some more and......
Fast forward to the adult world. The “Self-Help” books tell you to follow your passion and you will succeed in your endeavors right? How can I make a living at painting horses? Answer: Connect with equine enthusiasts that are as passionate as you are about horses and work hard-really hard -to paint the energy of this amazing animal and present your work to the world. Easy? Not! Rewarding? Yes!
I have painted horses in just about every discipline from polo to dressage. Horse owners are passionate about their horses and their individual sport. Some of these equine enthusiasts have become passionate about my work as well and are now collectors of my art. Getting to know horse and rider in all their varied disciplines through painting has enabled my work to find a niche in different art venues. My polo paintings have been included in articles in upscale polo magazines and recently three of my pieces were selected to be a part of a book that features equine art from 11 different countries. My race horse paintings have sold in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. and I continue to be in a beautiful gallery there –The Equidae.
A student recently photographed my painting process for a college project and is currently developing a DVD so I can send that out to clients as well. Knocking on doors- some open, some don’t but at the very least I usually get an interesting response or an idea for a different approach.
Where to meet equine art collectors? Horse shows, stables, riding organizations. The equine art enthusiast can be a backyard horse owner, a rider, owner of a string of polo ponies or manager of a stable featuring a certain breed. Sometimes a client purchases a painting because it brings back a memory - strikes an emotional chord. I did a series of paintings of children on their horses nervously waiting for their classes to begin, grooming their ponies, practicing their diagonals in the ring. Parents loved this series -and purchased pieces that perhaps reminded them of their own children or of themselves when years ago they started their own horse passions in the 4-H or Pony Club riding rings.
I try to make it as easy as possible for all horse art enthusiasts to see my work. From my postcard size business card with an image of my equine work to driving my van to other states filled with paintings that a particular customer might be interested in seeing in person. I may come to a home with a variety of paintings that we can try in different locations within someone’s home or stable. Some riding rings have beautiful viewing stands or office areas that are cut off from riding ring dust and present beautiful opportunities to exhibit a large equine painting or a cluster of small works.
To see some of my work and various articles visit my web site at: www.jmthiemefinearts.com. Better yet-stop by Pipe Dream Studio at Pipe Dream Farm in Swanzey, New Hampshire and see what’s new in the gallery. Let’s talk art and horses. My two equine buddies, Mic and Jess, will be there to greet you as well.
All the best ~ Jeanne