[special to USADEEPSOUTH]
Most little girls go through a "horse crazy phase" and most of them eventually grow out of it. There are those few, however, who never seem to get horses out of their systems. Artist Carol Roark is one of those few.
Believing that her career lay in the horse business, Carol attended Wood College to work toward a degree in equine management. As graduation neared, she realized that even with her scholarships she would not be able to afford an out-of-state university to continue her degree. That was when the art instructor at Wood talked her into looking at the art department at Mississippi State University. Carol's other passion had always been art, so she decided to give it a chance.
While at MSU, Carol's art emphasis was in graphic design, but her true love was painting, and, needless to say, she had managed to incorporate horses into every project her professors gave her.
Some of these projects she displayed at the various horse shows she attended. This not only paid her entry fees, but she also received numerous commissions. This, not graphic design, was the path she knew she wanted her career to take.
Since then, she has had the privilege of producing portraits of such quarter horse greats as Hollywood Dun It, Zippo Pine Bar and Rugged Lark. Her portrait of "Lark" was even featured in his biography, America's Horse.
Her paintings and drawings have graced the covers and have been featured in such magazines as The Chronicle of the Horse and Performance Horseman. She has also been the official artist for the Dixie National Quarter Horse Show since 1995.
More recently, Carol has been studying the techniques and theories of the late artist/colorist Henry Hensche with artist Sammy Britt. She is going out in the field and finding a new love for the Mississippi landscape. Studying Hensche through Sammy has helped her grow as a painter. She has become fascinated with light and color and their relationships and she feels this is allowing her paintings to have more depth and “feel” to them.
Carol lives with husband Al and their two daughters on their small horse farm in the Mississippi Delta. When she is not painting or being mom, she can be found on the back of her current quarter horse hunter, Gus.
For more information, visit Carol's beautiful web site: CarolRoark.com.
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