I'm getting close to finishing this piece, HUZZAH! I just need to add a bridle on the horse and do the wrists and hands of the rider, thicken the tail a bit and make the rider's eyes match better - they're a tiny bit off. Then I have to sign it and I'm finished!!
The "splash" you see behind that right hind foot is necessary for support and strength for the piece. In real life, that foot would be flying through the air like both left feet, but the horse needs more than one point of contact with the base in order to be strong enough to stand without bending the supporting leg. The "splash" of dirt may be modified a bit, I don't know yet. It's easy to sculpt them in relief, but doing them 3-D, it's a lot harder to get the look I want.
The stirrups are on the working surface (the board) in front of the piece in the photo above. They won't be attached until the piece is in bronze because they are too delicate to cast properly. They will be hand made for each sculpture, just as the bit rings, stirrup leathers and reins will be. I think I'm going to remake the stirrups out of Super Sculpey so they'll ship more safely.
She looks like my customer, which pleases me a lot since I haven't done a sculpture of someone with an open smile before. Every picture I have of her, she's got a happy smile on her face, so that's what I used.
If you have questions or comments, feel free to write me! Thanks for your interest.