Featured Image for January 2022

"Sensing"

Wild horses are always using their eyes, ears, and sense of smell to inform their next move.  To approach, to run, to move away, to explore… they use the data they collect through their sensing to decide if it’s safe to explore, safe to connect, and ultimately, when it is safe to rest and to sleep. 

I was in a conversation this morning about the uncertainty of the future.  From a grand scale for the human population, the pandemic is still unpredictable, financial investment analysts are shrugging their shoulders, and severe weather events can occur almost anywhere.  L.A. had tornado warnings last month!  So, now is a really good time to go inward and do some personal sensing about what’s really important TODAY. 

Live life like there’s no tomorrow.  Be your ultimate self in every moment, today.


This image was taken in San Luis Obispo on a Return to Freedom photo safari on March 15, 2021.   

Featured Image for December 2021

"Jalama in Black & White"

Jalama just has this amazing presence.  She seems curious about what I'm doing and she'll even influence the horses around her to come look, just because she's standing there watching me.  I just love this horse!

This image was taken in San Luis Obispo on a Return to Freedom photo safari on March 15, 2021.   

Featured Image for November 2021

"Portrait of a Mustang"

Cristo was branded, identifying him as a Mustang.  I was curious about the branding, and found this information on the internet:

When a wild horse is rounded up by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), they are given a freeze brand on their neck. This marking indicates that the horse is federally owned. Each one is unique and has identifying information like birth date and capture location.  Captured horses are freeze branded on the left side of the neck by the BLM, using the International Alpha Angle System, a system of angles and alpha-symbols that cannot be altered.  Although it is generally accepted that freeze branding is less painful than hot-iron branding, it is still less commonly used. This is due to the fact that freeze branding is more expensive because the materials are less common and can evaporate if they are not kept properly cooled.


This image was taken in San Luis Obispo on a Return to Freedom photo safari on June 29, 2018.   

Featured Image for October 2021

"Bear's Mares Kicking Up Dust"

Running Bear's mares are running up a trail on a dry summer afternoon, which leaves a cloud of dust in their wake.   I just like the shape of the horses in this image and the light.  Enjoy!

This image was taken in Lompoc on a Return to Freedom photo safari on July 10th.   

Wild Mustang Featured Image for September, 2021

"Into the Sunset"

This band was making their nightly migration to the part of the sanctuary where they would spend the night, huddled together for safety and rest.  It's interesting to watch them.  Sometimes they graze their way from one spot to another, sort of moving in various clumps in the same direction, subtly so that you aren't really sure if they have a direction, but they do.  Other times, they walk in a line, like you see here.   

This image was taken in San Luis Obispo on a Return to Freedom photo safari on July 17th.  The sky was a bit blah, so I dropped in a few clouds and some nice sunset colors to create a little more mood in the image. 

Featured Image for April 2021

"Noble Hermès"

Hermès is a roan from a band that was rounded up in the Devil's Garden Territory in California and rescued by Return to Freedom.  The band was relocated to RTF's San Luis Obispo sanctuary last year.  Hermès stood there, locked gaze, his on mine, mine on his.  His mates looked up only briefly and went back to grazing, but Hermès watched.

Hermès is named after the Olympian deity in ancient Greek mythology.  Hermès is considered the herald of the gods. He is also considered the protector of human heralds, travellers, thieves, merchants, and orators. He is able to move quickly and freely between the worlds of the mortal and the divine, aided by his winged sandals. Hermès plays the role of the psychopomp or "soul guide" — a conductor of souls into the afterlife.  I can imagine the roan Hermès wearing winged horse shoes.  Can you?

These images were created at Return to Freedom Wild Horse Sanctuary in San Luis Obispo, California on March 15, 2021.  I volunteer for RTF as a photo safari guide, and participated in three safari's in March.  As you can see, the hills are green and the mustang's coats are still thick to keep them warm.  It was very chilly and windy up on the hill!

For more information on the Mustangs living in sanctuary, how to sponsor a Mustang, or to register for a tour or photo safari, visit the Return to Freedom website.

roan mustang
image 20210315_0264 Hermes

Featured Image for January 2021

"Keep Moving Forward"

As we step into a new year, I looked for an image that seemed appropriate and found this one.  
May this coming year be better than the last in any number of ways.  Fix your eyes on the light, your feet on the ground, and keep moving forward.

This image was created at Return to Freedom Wild Horse Satellite Sanctuary in San Luis Obispo, California on April 25, 2020.

For more information on the Mustangs living in sanctuary, visit the Return to Freedom website.

Featured Image for October 2020

"Horse Play"

Watching the herd in their natural environment is unforgettable.  I see tender moments, quiet moments of grazing, I see how the bands move about and take their turns at the water hole, and I see playful moments like this.  I call it playful because there’s a push/pull and a give and take in their sparring.  Beneath the play might be a brief battle for hierarchy, or it might simply be a playing out of their current mood and energy levels. 

This image was taken on April 25, 2020 at Return to Freedom’s Satellite Sanctuary in San Luis Obispo, California.

For more information on the Mustangs living in sanctuary, visit the Return to Freedom website.

May 2020 Mustang image release. I love Chief and love how the breeze gently lifts his mane in this image as he stopped to look over in my direction. Some images just speak to me and this is one. I'm ordering a large canvas print for my next exhibit!

Featured Image for April 2020

"Together"

A stallion will collect a group of mares.  A lead mare emerges, based on her sensibility - her ability to utilize all of her senses for the protection and well-being of the herd.  The lead mare is brave and wise.  The whole band, though, work as a collective to survive and thrive.  One of the inherent behaviors of a band or herd of any size is that when it's time to move, they all go together.

During our current experience as humans with the virus epidemic, I've heard repeatedly, "we're all in this together."  No matter our species, and no matter our predator or threat, it's better to deal with it together.

May all be and stay well.


This photograph of Chief's band was taken on May 20th, 2019 at Return to Freedom's Wild Horse Sanctuary location in Lompoc, in California's Central Coast region.
For more information on the Mustangs living in sanctuary, visit the Return to Freedom website.

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