Friday, December 30, 2011

Wonderful Callahan...

I love this little guy...he is the wonderful little Callahan resin sculpted by the talented Adalee Hude of Brightly Hude Studio.

Today I began prepwork on him..he will be my first sales piece for 2012.

I searched a few months back for a reference photo to use and found one. A nice palomino sabino....but like I do 99% of the time I change my mind on colors. Last week I found a dark golden buckskin sabino photo that I think will work better.

Prepping on Callahan should not take very long as he is a nice clean cast.

I have GOT to work more on  my photography skills...with the wonderful help of two deal fellow artists I am working on background colors and matching the best background colors for horse colors. I am amazed at the difference changing a background color can make on the color of the painted model. For me photographing a grey horse is the most difficult...I'm going to look for a nice greyish-dark brown background and try that.

My camera is acting up too....sigh. It has been a good camera for an el-cheepo camera and has lived a long time :)

I hope everyone has a wonderful Happy New Year!!!!
Sandra Hottinger
C.S.Richmond Studios

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

New Years Resolutions....

I've been sadly lacking in my BLOG posts....I'd like to begin posting to my blog at least once a week and no less than once every two weeks....making this my New Years resolution :)

I'd like to included studio progress reports....I'm a bit apprehensive posting in progress photos as the projects I'm painting always look awful in the early stages...and they look like a complete mess for quite a while. I'm thinking tho that it might be good to show how a project I am working on gets from point "A" to point "B".

Wishing you all the very best New Year!
Sandra Hottinger
C.S.Richmond Studios

Monday, December 26, 2011

Plastic customs.....

I took some time Friday to photograph a few of the plastic items I had stored along with my stash of resins. Above is the Breyer Longhorn Bull I have that has been prepped. I don't have a reference photo picked out yet but I see him in a dark brown and spotted white pattern.

This wonderful Peter Stone "Spago" plastic is one of my favorites. Seeing him as an appaloosa sport horse...

This is another of my favorites...the Breyer Wintersong plastic. I have two of these which I'll be painting. I also have reference photos picked out in highly detailed roaned/spotted colors....
Above is the Breyer Cow and Calf....I've always wanted to paint a cow and calf.....searching for reference photos for this project...

The above is the Breyer Succession plastic...I want to customize this model somehow...change her around a bit. No doubt she will be a rose dappled grey.....

I also have a Peter Stone Arab, two Breyer Nokota plastics, and a customized Breyer Bouncer, a Breyer Lonesome Glory I'd like to customize and paint into an Akhal Teke.... and several more items waiting in the wings.

My New Years Resolution : Post to my blog more often .....I've been sadly lacking in posts here and feel the need to post at least once a week or at least once every two weeks.

Wishing you all the very best in the New Year!
Sandra Hottinger
C.S.Richmond Studios

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I'm a resin hoarder....

This last weekend I discovered that I am a resin looked that way to me when I unpacked all of the resins I had accumulated over the past...oh 8 years.....
There was only one I did not remember purchasing..Jethro...see below:
My goodness he is impressive in person! Very large traditional size...I'm seeing him in bay with nice white markings.

I had a realization this past weekend....I knew it and had thought it myself. My Charlie looked at me and said "you know I think it is time for you to start painting those resins you have stashed away while you can still see to do so".

So Monday AM I unpacked the five boxes I have of unpainted resins. I took photos and tagged goodness I had thought I had tagged these guys! I have my prepped plastics all out on the shelves....have to get photos of those as well.

My goodness it will be difficult to choose colors for some of many options...some of them I had already picked out reference photos years ago to paint by.

I imagine there will be a few I will end up not sending to the auction block. These will go into my "private collection" folder on my web page where if I get an offer I can not live without then out the door it will go.

Years ago when I was not painting full time and had a job I purchased resins whenever I could. and put them away. I still have a very difficult time calling what I do (painting for a living) a "hobby"....especially when I visit my tax man and have to write that check for my income tax. IMO what I do is a job and a business. I have income and deductions, overhead, shipping, customers...all that good stuff. Does the fact that I'm painting 3-D rather than flat work make my job a "hobby"? I just don't understand....that is another subject for another day.

Here is the link to the rest of the blank resin/plastic photos if you would like to see:

Click on the "items to be painted and sold" album there in the gallery.

My commission books are closed. I'll be finishing up my in studio commissions during 2012 and completing a few sales items as well.

There may be one or two resins I just won't be able to say no to painting if asked....however I must draw the line somewhere in order to get my stash painted within the next 10 years ...ha ha! Seriously it will be a challenge to get them all completed.....

Have a very Merry Christmas everyone!
Sandra Hottinger
C.S.Richmond Studios

Thursday, October 6, 2011

"Daisy Chane"

I'm enjoying the wonderful cool October air....we had a long cloudy spell last week for about 8 days...I know many who are lacking in rain would love to have these cloudy cool rainy days...the progress of fall and the begining of winter no doubt will bring rain to those dry regions.

Meet "Daisy Chane". She is a Breyer customized balking mule project by Karla Zroik of Kamansa Korner Studio and myself, Sandra Hottinger of C.S.Richmond Studios. "Daisy" stands 10.5 inches tall to the tip of her ear.

Karla, creator of fantasticly detailed one of a kind dog, cat, and other wonderful animal sculptures, did the scullpting on this project.....and after Karla completed the amazing sculpted hair detailing, "Daisy Chane" was shipped to me for the paintwork.

Here are some wonderful Scotty dogs that Karla Sculpted...these are proudly displayed in my curio cabinet.

I've hand painted "Daisy Chane" in rich oil colors and some acrylic details. I thought it fitting that with a name like "Daisy Chane" (who remembers making those chain necklaces out of field daisies?) she needed a daisy necklace....I've made the necklace so that is is removeable.

This project was completed 10.5.2011.

For size comparison here are a few photos of Miss "Daisy" along with a Breyer sitting donkey (left) and a Breyer balking mule (right)....."Daisy" was created using a Breyer mule like the mule pictured there on the right....

And here are two more photos of "Daisy" with the Breyer sitting donkey.....

....and the Breyer balking mule.

Wishing you all the best! Have a wonderful day!
Sandra Hottinger
C.S.Richmond Studios

Saturday, September 24, 2011


Time for a blog has been a while for sure.

I adore the fall....the colors of the leaves and the nice cool air. The rain on the fallen bright orange, red and yellow pretty.

I've been busy in the studio. After hurricane Irene and the damage here in central Virginia from the 71 MPH winds..the loss of electric for five days and the loss of productivity from clean up and no studio lamp to aid my painting.... I've happily completed several projects. We had another hurrican named Isabelle come thru here back about five years ago....we had the same amount of distruction and the winds were measured at 68MPH.

As you all have heard by now there was a 5.8 earthquake here on the east coast on August 23rd, 2011. The origin of the earthquake was 70 miles from my home.The last time I checked there had been more than 30 aftershocks. 

Having these natural occurances happen I felt the need to re-arange my studio to better protect customers I took a day to pack all the unpainted customer resins away in bubble wrap. The way our house shook with things falling and pictures dropping from the walls I am amazed that there were no resin fatalities. I also had to re-do how I kept the "wet paint" resins....I placed them in a more secure closer-to-the-floor location.

Here are a few completed items....
Sweet Elsie and Oliver.....sculpted by the gifted and talented Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig. The above items were commissioned and are owned by Kate Cabot. It was a true pleasure painting these two wonderful resins.

Next is a wonderful palomino Kentucky Reign. This is only the second palomino sculpture I have had the pleasure to paint ....

Kentucky Reign Traditional American Saddlebred Mare resin...sculpted by the very talented Debbi LerMond. Commissioned and owned by Lori Martinez. The mane and tail sculpted to accent the sculpture is amazing to see in person. The delicate detail is fantastic. Another true treasure I am happy to have had the pleasure of painting.

Next is wonderful Valinor little bit warmblood mare..skillfully sculpted by Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig. Owned by Susan Rice:

Susan has chosen the name "Say it in Silver" for this copy of Valinor....I'm still working on the final photos of Susans item....waiting for the sun to shine so I can get more photos of this item.

Well that is all the studio happenings to report at this time....enjoy the fall everyone!
Sandra Hottinger
C.S.Richmond Studios

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Hot summer winds....

There is a positive side to having a hot summer and painting with oil colors...the oil paints dry very fast when it is hot ! Even the whites and light yellows are dry in 24 hours. In winter I am waiting 7 days or more for my paintwork to dry....we keep our home very cool in the winter and I imagine if we had the thermostat set higher my paintwork would dry faster. I also do not have AC in my studio in the open window and fans do the cooling for me. Now I will admit when we hit 103 here in Central Virginia about 10 days ago you bet that AC was turned on....we are fortunate to have an average summertime temp of around 92-96 degrees.

I've been listening to a few of my workshop students and thier issues with slow drying oil colors due to climate where they live. I myself do not use the drying agents in painting 3-D resin projects. Many asked about using the drying agents for speeding up the drying time of the oil colors. Some asked about using terpentine.

I used terpentine ...well the artists brand of terpentine....when I painted on canvas years ago....used to speed the drying time of my work. I am a bit apprehensive in using terpentine on 3-D resin material....I'm not sure if using terpentine in the process of applying oil paint to resins has been put to the test and what the long term issues might be on the resin material over time. Perhaps none yes?

I can speak from exterience in using the dryers and the issues one can have with them. When I first began using the oil colors to paint 3-D resins about 5 years ago I did use a chemical drying agent on one was a small Stablemate sized resin. I'm not sure if it was my inexperience in using the drying agent or a problem with the drying agent itself.....the surface of the paintwork began to crack like a the soil in super dry season. Fortunately this project was my personal resin and not a commissioned item. Needless to say I never used the drying agent again for fear of messing up a project. Perhaps I used too much of the dryer....or I applied too many coats of oils too quickly..or I applied the final sealer coat before the paintwork was 100% dry.

About a year after this happened to me I read somewhere about how the drying agents have to be replaced with a fresh bottle after a few months. I read that if one used the old drying agent that strange things can happen to paintwork.

I am wanting to go back and try the dryers again....I've read online about several brands that do not yellow with age AND that it only take a TINY bit of the stuff to make your paints dry faster....I'm thinking that using too much of dryer mixed into my paint was my issue.

If you all hear a scream and read a post or two written by me stating "I knew better"  and "I told myself not to" then you will know what happened. "Elsie Workshop" is nearing the end of the session. Pictured above are two photos of the completed "Elsie" ...."Elsie" is sculpted by the super gifted Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig  and this copy of "Elsie" is owned by Kate.

I've ventured into producing a booklet and CD containing the step by step photos and a 25 page instruction booklet on the "Elsie" project. My goodness 25 pages in the booklet and 150 photos just for one project...but I REALLY I enjoyed putting together the workshop and teaching, the booklet and CD set.

I found and began using MS Office Word after a few workshop sessions...learning how and using the MS Word made the project much better as my spelling skills are somewhat lacking. I also learned how to edit the step by step instructional photos a bit better too. Practice practice practice :)

In the works is a highly detailed Annihilator blanket appaloosa in deep dark bay workshop...I am sure it will be early next year before this workshop will come to life...loads of details, painting time, and I am sure there will be more than 150 edited photos for this workshop...probably 250 photos is a good estimate.

I also have a dappled grey Boreas that will make a splendid workshop project...AND a silver Lucitano (Turko) resin too. No doubt those workshops will be available before the Annihilator project is put together.

I love bright colors. When I went shoping for the materials to put together the CD and booklet I wanted COLOR! There they were! All bright in wonderful shades...CDs, folders, and even matching CD cases.

Speaking of bright colors....look at this beautiful butterfly that landed on an appropriately named butterfly bush outside near my studio window!

Time to start painting for me!
Have a wonderful day all!
Sandra Hottinger

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

"Elsie" coming to life....

"Elsie" is the subject in the painting workshop I'm giving....she makes the perfect teaching tool too. Elsies sculpted details are wonderful..hats off to Sarah Minkiewicz for her fantastic sculpting talent ! Even the whisker bumps and skin wrinkles on Elsies muzzle are detailed into the sculpture.

Elsie will have a flea bitten coat once completed and little Oliver will be painted a baby black foal color with a small star and four white sox.

I'll be offering the workshop in CD/booklet form soon to those who missed the class registration deadline.

Elsie is owned and commissioned by Kate and I'm handpainting Elsie in oil colors.

Hope you all are keeping cool....the summer is a hot one this year. I expect the hot teperatures here in Virginia will be short lived as the weather here is very changeable from day to day. In the winter we can have a few days of 30 degree temps and then it will warm up into the high 50s.
That is about all for this writing session...

Have a wonderful day all!
Sandra Hottinger
CSRichmond Studios

Friday, July 15, 2011

Works in progres...

New favorites....
I've been painting a few new equine coat colors over the past few months....palomino, dun, grulla and new favorite colors. I especially love painting the duns and dappled of my works in progress, pictured above, is a wonderful Valinor skillfully sculpted by the vary talented Sarah Minkiewicz....the tiny sculpted details on Sarahs sculptures amaze me. Valinor is owned by Susan and Susan and I have decided on the name "Say it in Silver" for the name of this project.

The "Elsie Workshop" is going well and the students have suggested that I make some CDs of the workshop for them to buy as reference material...there will also be CDs on the "Elsie Workshop" offered for sale to non-workshop members as well.

Time to paint!
Sandra Hottinger
C.S.Richmond Studios

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Teaching time....

I've been kicking around the idea of starting an online painting workshop for over a year...a "window into my studio" of sorts....a place to begin teaching this unusual hobby craft we have.

I've been watching the posts here and there where hobby members are selling off their collections and leaving the hobby.... who would have ever thought the economy would do what it is doing yes? Here where we live in Central Virginia we are seeing improvement thank goodness!

I think we need to do as much as we can to bring new members into the hobby NOW......teaching someone to paint a model horse may bring someone into the hobby.....even if it is one person that is fine. That one person could tell a friend...and they could tell their see what I mean.

I was an apprentice once...THAT is a whole new story I'll have to get into and write later....I saw the importance of the experienced worker ..the Journeyman in my case....teaching the apprentice. When that experienced worker retires or can not work any longer for one reason or another....there has to be someone there to take his/her place in order to pass on the trade. The experienced Journeyman can teach an apprentice many many little techniques to make his/her job task go much faster and easier....and MOST IMPORTANTLY keep the high quality of WORKMANSHIP in place. High quality workmanship keeps the journeyman/apprentice employed longer than a worker who does work not up to the customers standards. One can apply the same theory to any company or an artist or tradesman. If the customer is not happy with the product he may not deal with the company or artist who is making a product in the future.

Passing along the torch and gathering new hobby members by teaching 3-D model equine painting.....I still have a hard time calling what I do a "hobby" :) I work at my painting for 50 to 70 hours a week.... LOVE it mind you...but to me painting is my job.

The above is my point of view anyway....I am by no means an expert :)

Anyway I've set up the first class...a class in "Prepping for Beginners" and an "Elsie in Fleabitten Grey in Oils" class....I'll be running these two classes together. Indeed there are several beginners who have applied for the class. Wonderful!

My plan is to offer many more classes... I think the "Unicorn..not just a White Horse" class will be next up. There will be a "Kladruber in Dappled Grey" class...and a "Annihilator in highly detailed Appaloosa" class later down the road. The Annihilator class will be an advanced class.....

I'll also be giving some smaller scale painting classes...the Stablemate sized projects. Painting those wee ones takes a whole new method of painting...for me anyway. Different tools and such.

Class starts Monday..I've got to get going!


Friday, May 20, 2011

The leaves of summer...

Well the leaves are in full foliage now...all dressed in thier dark summer emerald clothes. We had a pair of blue birds nest in the bird house this year. Watching that pair of blues this spring was a treat. Usually the sparrows get first dibs on that house...not this year though.

Working my way through commissions here in the studio....I love working on commissions and I love working with customers. I've been in retail sales, in one form or another, for almost 40 years and never tire of it.

I have many resins packed away which I purchased through the years for sales items. I think my favorite to paint will be the "Crusher" and the "Willowby". I want to customize the "Willowby"..give him a new mane and/or tail...thinking on that. Time to dig those beauties out and give them some color.

Here is a nice little resin. Valinor..sculpted by the super talented Sarah Minkiewicz...this item is a commissioned item owned by Susan.. I have fallen in love with painting dappled greys and the dilute colors. I want to paint a silver bay as a sales item. I  have in mind a Ravenhill Revisited which I want to give a new look...a new mane and tail. I've had the reference photo picked out and placed in my library for ever. I also have one copy of the trad Scarlett resin I want to paint...I have that ref photo stored away as well. Time to get busy painting these projects!
"Vincentius"  (Johann resin) is completed. He was put up for offers a couple of weeks ago and will be going to a new home soon. I have one more copy to paint....still tossing around the colors for him in my mind. I may paint him in a nice dark dappled bay with some neat facial markings...need to search for ref photos.
I also have some Breyers and Stone plastics to paint as sales items. I have a "Spago" Stone plastic...seeing him as an appaloosa sporthorse..dark dark bay appaloosa sporthorse.
More updates soon! Happy Spring!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

"The LOOK"

Progress on my next sales item is speeding along....I've added the basic outline of the "look" that "Vincentius" will display in his you see in the photo also the beginings of the fine hair detailing I'll be incorporating into the dappled grey coat of "Vincentius".

I want to paint a full-concentration and fully-focused look in the eyes of "Vincentius"....his nostrils are gathering the scents in the air ...his ears are alert to the slightest sound...and his eyes are focused intently on the movement of perhaps his master or some other subject of his interest.

I have on hand four photos I am working with as reference photos to paint by and I have the web page printed out with the documentation of the horse and breed...all the documentation/photos will go to the new owner of "Vincentius". The breed I chose is the Gaited Morgen Horse.... "Vincentius" will be auctioned off via Ebay soon. As of this date "Vincentius" is about 90% completed.

I just LOVE this resin....he is so majestic and proud.....Johann was exertly sculpted by the wonderfully talented Morgen Kilbourn.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Pictured here is my new up and coming C.S.Richmond Studios sales item "Vincentius"...this item is currently a work in progress...he is a wonderful "Johann" resin sculpted by the ever popular Morgen Kilbourn.

I've titled this paintwork project "Vincentius" and the photo there beside him is the ref photo I am using for the paintwork....ever sice I began painting flat work or 3-D equines I've given my paintwork items names or titles ....the name I chose for this project is "Vincentius". The name "Vincentius" means conquering. With "Johann"s wonderful proud stance the name suits him yes?

More photos soon!

C.S.Richmond Studios

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Erins "Kottilian"

Erins "Kottilian" has been almost completed.....just a few more minor details and Kottilian will be on the way home to her owner.

"Kottilian" was sculpted by the wonderful Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig....more photos soon of "Kottilian" as today was camera works better taking photos with natural sunlight ..early morning sunlight. So one more day of rain here and then the sunshine and photo time!

C.S.Richmond Studios

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

"Boise"...sculpted by Michelle Platt...

"Boise"...wonderful new draft resin sculpted by the super talented Michelle Platt...who also sculpted the ever popular "Wyakin" resin in traditional size and curio is a photo of the commission I'll be painting for Michelle on one of her personal copies of her new sculpture "Boise".

The photo was supplied by Lori Schultz a...nd is a photo of one of Loris amazing drafters. Thank you Lori for the photos!

"Boise" will be painted in a detailed hair-by-hair roaned pattern to match the ref photo.
Thank you Michelle!
Have a wonderful day everyone!
C.S.Richmond Studios

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


"Kottilian" work in progress...
"Kottilian"....sculpted by the super talented Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig...little bit scale resin with a wonderful flowing mane and tail and a fantastic matching base. A commissioned work in progress...owned and commissioned by Erin. "Kottilian is approx. 85% completed in this photo. The color ref. horse Erin chose is featured in a photo alongside of "Kottilian". More photos soon!

Sunday, February 27, 2011


Here is a wonderful work of art...Morgen Kilbourns wonderful new "Johann" resin. Look at that face and his stance! So proud....there is fire in his eyes even unpainted !
Pictured here is my copy of "Johann" ready for colors..I've named him "Vincentius" which means "Conquering" .....pictured beside him is the photo of a live horse I will be using as reference to paint "Vincentius". I will be using a hair-by-hair technique for the painting of this nice dappled grey...  Since I have another copy of wonderful "Johann" on order I will be placing this copy up for sale once completed.....
Stay tuned for the progress of "Vincentius".

Monday, February 21, 2011


Wonderful Lorenz...sculpted by the super talented Brigitte Eberl. This copy of Lorenz was commissioned for paintwork by Michelle and we used a live horse ref photo to work by for this project. Michelle chose a wonderful color for is a photo of Michelles Lorenz along with the ref photo used.
Here is a photo of the fine hair detail which was incorporated into this projct....

and one other photo of the details of Lorenz..

Friday, February 11, 2011


One of my all time favorite projects...lovely T.K. Wellington...
Owned and commissioned by Stephanie and Brian...portrait of thier horse T.K.Wellington..handpainted by C.S.Richmond Studios...we used a gorgeous Carol Williams Victrix for this project...I transformed Victrix from a mare to a gelding .....enjoy! See second FEB 2011 post below...