From Ride Magazine:

We are excited to announce that Trish Palmer, with her painting, "Three Amigos," was chosen as the winner of our 2009 equine art contest. Here is Trish's story. Editor
By: Trish Clark Palmer
August 17, 2009

Three Amigos

Trish's Story

Born and raised a California girl, I had the privilege of spending childhood summers on my grandparents' 200-acre farm in Nashville, Tennessee. There began my love affair with those magnificent creatures known as horses.

From Shetland ponies to a beloved buckskin Quarter Horse named Pondsan, my heart was filled with their magic. It is exhilarating to now have my own horses here at my Santa Ynez Valley ranch. I have six Peruvian Pasos and two Arabians, and I ride almost daily--bareback, out on nearby trails, or my favorite place at Pismo Beach.

About nine years ago when I was 44, singer Amy Grant, who also happens to be my cousin, introduced me to the book "The Artists Way." Amy encouraged me to do the workbook and see what may come from it. I soon found the paintbrush and a wonderful art teacher, Greg LeRoy of Rivera Fine Art Center. I began my exploration of painting a bit tentatively, as I had never done art before. I soon discovered the total joy of splashing bright colors on the canvas, mostly painting people, specifically women from India.

About two years ago, I began painting my horses, and a whole new world opened up for me. The Peruvian Paso has such energy, vitality, and personality, so it was easy to photograph them and then put them on canvas. "Three Amigos" was done for my precious friend that taught me everything about the Peruvian Paso, Sylvia Reusser. The painting is of her horses. We ride together constantly.

I paint in acrylics and mostly on large canvases, either 36 inches by 48 inches, or 48 inches by 60 inches. Each painting takes on its own life; I have no predetermined idea of how it will look when finished. I merely start putting on colors and layers, and slowly it comes to life. Some paintings come easier than others. "Three Amigos" was one of those that happened easily. I love the personalities that shine through as the painting develops.

My style of big strokes and lots of color just happened. I had no art history in school, as I was a biology/anatomy major). So I really started with my own exploration. One day, my art teacher said that I painted like the Bay Area Figurative artist, Elmer Bischoff. I looked up his work and found a total resonance with his painting style. It was bold, colorful, and very expressive. Recently, I visited Vienna, Austria and was tremendously inspired by early 1900's Viennese artists. such as Oskar Kokoschka, Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt, and Richard Gerstl. Italian artist, Amadeo Modigliani, always captures my heart with his now-classic interpretation of portrait painting.

The inside of my home is filled with paintings of my horses, and right outside, there they stand, waiting, eager, hoping for carrots, cookies, or even a gallop in the hills. It is, indeed, a rich life.

Reach me by telephone at (805) 693-0097 or by e-mail at