After my trip to visit Esme and her Original Population Dairy Shorthorn I felt so inspired by her story and the passion and importance of the work she is dong to preserve these historic cattle. Having never seen an (Original Population) Dairy Shorthorn, I was completely taken with the breed. They are such sociable, quiet animals with kind faces and soft tones in their roan markings. The Dairy Shorthorn do come in three different colours red, white and roan with the roan being the most popular, so this is the colour I wanted to focus on. I was really excited to start working from the photographs I had taken.
Esme has such a wonderful bond with her cattle and I think she really portrayed the quiet nature of these cattle. It was a real pleasure to be able to witness, and I hope that through my drawing and prints I will be able to portray the nature and qualities of these cattle.
These are some pencil drawings that I have done from the photographs I took of the Shorthorns, from these drawings I then took the basic shapes and created handmade stamps to form the basis of my prints.
These are the prints of the Dairy Shorthorns that I created with my handmade stamps. I was most worried about how to portray the tonal nature within their coats, so to create the soft roan colours I layered up the stamps. I painted up the stamps with different colours and this combined with the textures from the stamps created a really interesting print. I am really pleased with the result and I feel that it really reflects the Shorthorns coat.
A big thank you to Esme and her father, Granger for taking the time to show me their cattle and tell me their inspiring story. I really hope that I get a chance to visit them again and see how their herd progresses, as the future of these rare breeds is dependent on the work of families like theirs.
Don't forget...if you would like to find out more about the Original Population Dairy Shorthorn take a look at the Rare Breed Survival Trust website >>>www.rbst.org.uk or if you would like to show your support and become a member of the RBST >>> https://www.rbst.org.uk/Support-Us/Become-a-Member.
I am Izzi, farmer’s daughter and textile designer at IzziRainey. If I am not designing or sewing you will find me out in the farmyard with my cattle. I am constantly seeking inspiration for my prints, not that I have to look very far. Growing up on the farm, I have always been influenced by my surroundings and this combined with my passion for farming is what inspires my designs. I love spending time on the farm but I also enjoy learning about other people’s animals, passions and stories, which are also influential to my design process. I hope you enjoy reading ‘Over the Farm Gate’