I watched the farrier working at Heath House Stables in Newmarket. It is vital that he gets the shoes fitted perfectly. A lot of money is riding on his work. This particular farrier has been shoeing the race horses in Newmarket for many years. He is completely trusted by the trainers.
I based this painting on a famous Sir Edwin Landseer painting: ‘Shoeing the Bay Mare’ that I had known since childhood. I turned the horse around and had the farrier shoeing the front hoof instead of the rear. I wanted to retain some of the dramatic lighting but left out the clutter around floor of the stable. That would never be allowed in a modern stable and the horse wouldn’t be shod in the farriers workshop where he might get injured.