cracker cows

Past subject with a more colorful pallet

"Spotted Cracker Calf"

6x8 oil on stretched canvas, SOLD

June of last year I painted this sort of half-grown calf (here:
This take has much more color, not so many hard edges, and a few other improvements that I'll not mention.

The possibilities of color are wonderful.  A study entrancingly interesting and unlimited.  
                    Robert Henri

"Days Old"

6x6 original oil on stretched canvas, SOLD

This little guy was in the same pasture on Millhopper as the most recent cow piece below. He is of unknown (to me) breeding & age, but not a Hereford, despite the coloring, and not many days old.

"The Spotted One"

6x6 oil on stretched canvas, SOLD

These small Spanish sort of cattle are just lovely. Some around here are indeed Cracker cows but I'm not sure about this herd on Millhopper road...You will see more of these in the future. I especially like the mostly white ones but the brown ones are certainly lots easier to paint!

This photo is rather poor, the color is a tad off and since it is very wet, there is glare.

Cracker Cows No. 2 & opportunistic, brave calf

It was tempting to do a close up of this calf's face because he is among the cutest I've seen, even though he is likely a year old or so. So I'm trying to paint looser but I couldn't resist rendering some details of this guy. (6x8 oil on canvas - Sold). This photo is very bad: I "skewed" the proportions of the calf and the background cows are obscured by glare.
There is a calf up on Millhopper road that I'm trying to get a good picture of, it was nursing a displeased Pinto mare the other day when I stopped.

"Cracker Cows No. 1"

11x14 oil painting from a photo taken of a Micanopy pasture. Cracker cows are interesting because they come in all colors and patterns including a sort of brindle coloration that is suggested in the mother cow here. They are small, attractive, and very hardy, but fell out of favor with most all ranchers because they don't bulk-up the way Angus and Herefords do. Fortunately some concerned ranchers decided preserving this heritage breed was important so you'll see a number of them in the pastures of Alachua County. The same efforts have been made to save the Cracker horses (like those on Payne's Prairie). Both have Spanish heritage and are small and hardy because they grazed free-range in the local area for centuries and were subject to natural selection. If you would like to see some photos of them and learn more here is a link to a Florida Dept. of Ag. site:
I have some great pictures of them I've taken in the area and plan to paint them again. And probably in more detail than this painting which is more about the setting than the cows.