I was lucky enough to stumble upon Patricia Borum and her amazing work at the Sacramento International Horse Show last fall. Ever since I have been lusting after her classical bronzes and very modern paintings (and a particular lucky family member is now the proud owner of one of her beautiful silk scarves). I knew I needed to interview her for Decidedly Equestrian. Please enjoy!
How long have you been creating art professionally?
I have been a professional artist for about 25 years.
How did you become an artist? What is your story?
I have always (since childhood) loved and drawn horses. My mother is also an artist so she encouraged me and bought me good quality art supplies. I enjoyed pencil drawing and oil painting. About 25 years ago I started painting decorative furniture and murals. Then sculpting came along which was delightful as I could make my own horse figurines which I have always loved.
How did the horse become your primary subject?
The horse is my primary subject simply because I know and love them so well. They can be so strong and dynamic or sweet and fragile. They are also a great subject for bronze and oil painting.
My upbringing was infused with horses and art. I spent many years in Europe and the Middle East growing up. The old equestrian art and classical design was a big influence on me.
How do you describe the style of your artwork? How has it evolved over your career?
The style of my artwork has mostly been classical and realistic for my sculpture and early paintings. Recently however I have completed a collection of bold colored stylized horse paintings.
These paintings have been transformed into a collage of beautiful silk scarves.
How do you get inspired? What is your creative process?
I get inspired when it is a new challenge that I want to take. Something I can already see as the finished product, and want one for myself. I rarely do a mock up or drawing first, I just make it.
Which is your favorite medium to work with and why?
My favorite mediums are sculpting in a medium hard plasticine clay for making model sculptures to cast in bronze, resin, or fiberglass. Or painting…I love oil paints as they are so nice to blend and you can get translucency.
What’s your history with horses? Tell me a little bit about the most important horses in your life.
I rode a spring horse all the way across the Atlantic from Europe to the USA on an ocean liner as a 2 yr old. As a 4 year old, my older sister got some riding lessons and I fell in love with horses! We moved to Iran where my family was gifted an Arabian nomad stallion, and we kept it in a back yard stable. My mother and sister rode, and I learned on donkeys there.
My first pony was given to me when I was about 7, she was a 10hh Shetland pinto mare who was wonderful. I rode her all over Kansas bareback. We then moved to Virginia and I started riding English and competed in gymkhanas and horse shows. Jumping was fun and she was good at it.
We moved to Buckinghamshire county outside London where I got a 14.2 hh Thoroughbred/Dartmoor pony gelding which we kept in the back yard stable. I rode everywhere, including to the local horse shows where we won many ribbons in jumping. I was also a member of the British Pony Club.
At 16 years of age we moved to Alexandria, Virginia where I got a 3 yr old Thoroughbred gelding from the track. I trained him in eventing with the pony club and took him to advanced levels.
We once again moved but to Rome, Italy for my senior year of high school. I took riding lessons in downtown Rome for school PE credit.
I took my Thoroughbred to college to William Woods University in Missouri where I studied equine science.
My last horse was a wonderful black and white paint gelding which I rode trail riding here, including much fun at Folsom Lake. He passed away a few years ago.
I have been blessed with the most absolute wonderful horses ever.
What is your favorite part of your being an artist? Any parts you don’t enjoy quite as much?
My favorite part of being an artist is to be able to make beautiful things I love, its the creative challenge. As a professional artist you must constantly be at work and you have all the other responsibilities that come with a business as apposed to having it as a hobby. Its a bit frustrating when I want to do the actual fun hands on art work but have to do the business side.
What’s next for you?
I am very enthusiastic about my silk scarves. That line is growing fast. Future plans also include jewelry, handbags, and totes. I as far as sculpture, I am making a largish horse head that will hang on a wall with an oval frame and floral surround – like the antique ones on old buildings in Europe. It will be made of resin or bronze and can go outside on buildings or inside as a decorator piece or even maybe a scarf holder!
How/where can Decidedly Equestrian readers purchase your artwork?
I am currently working on a brand new website, but my old one is still currently up, www.patriciaborum.com. I can also be reached at my studio in Orangevale California (outside Sacramento) 916 989-6623, via email [email protected] or on Facebook.