Saturday, November 17, 2012

What a privilege!

Lesley and I (late 90's?)
Let me introduce myself.

I am Terri and a close friend of Lesley's.   It is the greatest honor that Lesley has entrusted me with handling her print and gift business. 

How did this come to be?

Many years ago, I saw Lesley’s “Beauty and the Sea”, a depiction of an andalusian horse, the very breed that I raise and most adore.   I wrote a letter to Lesley, never dreaming that such a talented and well-known artist would take the time to even send me a reply.  In fact, Lesley sent me a warm and inviting letter, from which our close friendship  instantly developed.

Soon, Lesley came to Texas and we make plans for her to come and photograph my horses.   That photo shoot resulted in my flying out to her studio, then in Carmel Valley, California, to see (and buy)  the first original she painted of one of my stallions.

Never in a million years could I have predicted how much pleasure I would have as a result of knowing Lesley and from Lesley’s work,  how much I would admire and yearn to be part of her exploding business, and how close we would become as sisters in all ways but genetics.    I had the honor of sharing my home with Lesley while in town to set up the booth filled with their art treasures at local horse shows.  As Lesley visited and had to listen to my long and endless stories about various horses I acquired or about each of their distinct personalities, lo and behold, several other originals of my horses resulted.    My house began to look like a Lesley gallery with originals, prints and gift items. 
Lesley and a couple of my dogs and cat

Most of Lesley’s art has nothing to do with my own animals and nevertheless, I thrilled every time Lesley would email and describe whatever painting she was working on.   I think Lesley and I have lost count of how many visits we’ve gotten to spend time together–not enough!  We have laughed so many times and I get so excited when I hear that Lesley has an idea that she would like to paint next.   For example, we were like little horse-crazy girls as we made countless tries before  figuring out the best way to hang strands of flowers in my stallion’s mane for her to take a  photograph that ultimately became the inspiration for her amazing “The Romantic”. 

There are so many fun stories that if anyone is interested, I may share on this blog.   I would also like to share some of the stories I know about why a certain animal touched Lesley such that she painted its likeness.

With strength that has been an honor to witness, I have watched Lesley survive her unspeakable loss of her beloved husband and use the joy her art brings her to guide her toward  her future.     When Lesley described to me that she wants to spend all her time creating artwork and teaching art students at her workshops, it was without a moment’s hesitation that I wanted to work with her on the gift and print portion of her business.  After years of trying to figure out how someone with zero art talent could possibly be part of the magic Lesley creates, the door finally opened for me to become a small part of it.

I hope to use this blog as a way to help everyone get to know Lesley better, hear the stories behind some of her art and also, just as importantly, to get feedback on ideas for products, comments, suggestions or just your sharing which paintings are your favorite and why!     Thanks for reading and please check back on the website from time to time---new paintings and products will be coming!

Lesley and my stallion, Dadivoso a/k/a "The Gentleman"