Tiny Tales: Lad

Tiny Tales: Lad
Acrylic, Ink, Horsehair Collage
"Thank you for making me an optimist"
10" x 8"
In the personal collection of Carolyn Resnick,
Escondido, CA
(Lad is Carolyn's miniature stallion.)

Spirit Horses Renaissance Strider, 6 month-old gelding and Cracker Jack Surprise, yearling filly

Training SH Renaissance Strider

Horses in Miniature

Horses in Miniature
Ruella Yates, 2011
7 x 5 Acrylic with Horsehair Collage
(In honor of Jackie and Strider)

Gourd Bowl, embellished with acrylics, copper, turquoise and leather

Horse on Cave Wall
In the collection of Andrew and Jackie Hanson, Houston, TX

Fly with Me

Fly with Me
16" x 40" Acrylic on Canvas

Out of Indigo Shadows

Out of Indigo Shadows
48" x 36" Acrylic on Canvas

Red Mare: Arabian Dancers

Red Mare: Arabian Dancers
20" x 16" Acrylic on Canvas

Renaissance Man, acrylic painting 30" x 30"

Renaissance Man 2010, Ruella Yates
acrylic painting, 30" x 30"

Invitation to Ride: No bridle, no bit, and finally no stirrups and one rein

Renaissance Painter--What a guy!
Every ride is better than the one before! I went out for a short ride that turned into a long, loving conversation with Renn. He came to me when he saw me picking up his halter, and it just kept getting better. He rubbed his nose on the pad and saddle, inviting them. He walked around the pasture with me on the ground asking him to touch trees, put his foot on a cone, etc. I stopped at the mounting block, got on, and had a soft ride through serpentines and patterns. I rode him to a tractor tire and dismounted, sitting down to rub his legs. I got up, ready to take him back to the house and unsaddle, but I got a surprise: He flexed his beautiful neck to me, and with soft eyes invited me to get back on. I did, and we rode around the pasture to a stump, where I dismounted. Again, he asked me to get back on, and gave me a soft ride again. Back to the mounting block we went, where I dismounted, loosened the cinch and untied the loop rein. Again, Renn asked me to get back on. I tightened the cinch, got on with one rein and no stirrups, and asked him to take me to the house. What a lovely experience. He stayed with me at the fence until I went inside. The feeling: priceless for both of us.

This Shining Day, This Beautiful Horse

The sun on my Paint horse, the wind in our manes...
Each day with Renaissance Painter is better than the one before. It was perfect fall weather for our ride this afternoon, and it felt as though he read my every thought. Without bridle, bit, spurs or whip he moved with me. At times, I felt we were a centaur.

Joyful Spirit

Kira waited patiently (as much as possible for her) online, waiting for the farriers to trim her beautiful hooves.  When she was released, she was the picture of joyful freedom.  My husband grabbed the camera and captured the moment.

Barrier Broken, Spirit Horse series Art Card

Barrier Broken, Art Card
July 4, 2009

3 New Paintings

Golden Minuet
Portrait of Bask Arabian Mare
14x11 oil on canvas

In the Distance
7x5 oil on board
Sunset Love
5x7 oil on board

Kira and Renn at the end of September

Kira is steadily gaining weight and confidence. Here, she feels secure enough to stand quietly and share breathing with me. She knows that the stick in my hand will never hurt her, and that's she's safe here; this is a giant step for her.
Renn, who now stops when asked in a halter. In the beginning of our time together, I was unable to get a good stop with a bit. He taught me that a good stop isn't about what's on his head or in his mouth.

I love you.

Portrait of Jenny

Jenny in the morning light...What a lovely sight! Jenny is our ranch security guard, keeping away coyotes, snakes, and other assorted varmints. The horses look to her to keep them safe, as well as being their trusted friend.

Introducing Kira, adopted from Blaze's Tribute Equine Rescue

Our newest arrival at Spirit Horse Ranch is Kira, adopted from Blaze's Tribute Equine Rescue. We first met her on August 1, when her herd was seized by police as abused and neglected horses. We took her in as a foster horse; by the time she became available for adoption, we knew she belonged with us. Kira is a chestnut Arabian mare. She was met and nurtured lovingly by Renner and Jenny, and is steadily gaining weight and becoming a healthy member of the herd. Kira's "before and after" pictures are at this link: http://www.blazesequinerescue.com/kira.html

Spirit Horse Ranch & Studio

I now reside at our newly-acquired Spirit Horse Ranch & Studio, in fruition of my lifetime dream. No more boarding stables and leased horses, as wonderful as that was, with the advent of Renaissance Painter, my new Paint gelding. He's the embodiment of my Spirit Horses, and he and his little donkey companion, Jenny, have brought new inspiration and joy to my life.

New Ranch, New Horse, New Life

I haven't posted in several months, as my life has taken a beautiful turn. I purchased a small acreage, and have been moving and turning the place into Spirit Horse Ranch and Studio, a fulfillment of my life's dream. Two days after closing on the place and frantically making it safe for horses, the most amazing horse was delivered. His name is Renaissance Painter, a sorrel and white Paint gelding I call Renn. After 2 weeks of solitary living, I went in search for a companion for Renn, as all horses need others of their kind. My search led me to Jenny, a small standard donkey, who gives Renn, and me, great joy. A real plus: Jenny is a "guard jenny"; her bloodline leads her to bond with her home and companions, protecting them from anything she perceives as a threat. The coyotes, bobcats, snakes, and other assorted pesky critters have backed off, and Renner has "cooled his chili", as we say in the Southwest!

Spirit Horse Study

Spirit Horse Study
Ink on handmade paper on acrylic on canvas
30" x 30"

World Turned Upside Down

Encaustic/collage on claybord 11" x 14"
A Native American face, with present images of casino and high-rise in a world upside down from the traditional way of life, symbolized by Spirit Horses and teepee shape.


Sanctuary: Mustangs

Encaustic/copper on hardboard

Born to Run

Born to Run

Encaustic on cedar box

Lucky Penny

Lucky Penny

Encaustic/photo/coin/copper wire on hardboard

(In the personal collection of Dr. Carlos & Andrea Garcia)

Lucky Penny

This is Penny, a beautiful 5-year-old QH mare
who has been playing/working with me for 4 months. She has beautiful ground manners now, and loves to play Parelli's Seven Games! She is successfully carrying her owners, Dr. Carlos and Andrea Garcia. She's currently gaining trail confidence, and progressing nicely. Lucky Penny, Lucky me!

Horses...Healers and Stealers of the Human Heart

Prairie Storm

Prairie Storm
12" x 16"
Print in the collection of
Charlie Wassemiller, Sussex, WI

The Horse Nation

I received an email today that touched my heart. A new art client, associated with the Ojibway tribe, spoke of my link with Spirit Horses (and that I'm not Native American): "I think the blood is immaterial to the "spirits"; it's what's in a person's heart that matters. Whatever your country of origin or genetic history...the Horse Nation has obviously found you and made you one of their own."

Equus Swirl and Woman in Blue in Small Works/Small Wonders Show, Paseo Arts Distric

Two of Ruella's paintings, Equus Swirl, a small encaustic from the Spirit Horse series; and Woman in Blue, acrylic, are in the Small Works, Small Wonders Show from July 25-August 5, in the Paseo Arts District, Oklahoma City. The opening reception is Tuesday, July 25, from 6-8 p.m. You are cordially invited!


Ruella Yates
20" x 16" Mixed Media
(Concrete, art tissue, handmade paper, horsehair, acrylic on canvas)

Veiled Rider

Veiled Rider
Ruella Yates
12" x 9" Acrylic on Canvas

Purple Horse at Dusk

Purple Horse at Dusk
Ruella Yates
12" x 9" Mixed Media (Concrete and oil on canvas)

Blue-Eyed Paint

Blue-Eyed Paint
Ruella Yates
Photograph, Adobe Photoshop

Two paintings chosen for Mixed Media Show at Oklahoma City University

Two of Ruella's paintings were chosen for the Mixed Media Art Show at Oklahoma City University's Norick Art Center: Set in Stone and Spirit Horse Study. The show is sponsored by the Watercolor Society, and will run through the end of July, 2006. Oklahoma's finest Mixed Media artists will be on display, and I am honored to be included in their midst. These paintings chosen by the juror are among my personal favorites.

Set in Stone

Set in Stone
Ruella Yates
Mixed Media (concrete and oil on mat board)

Ruella received an Honorable Mention award at the Clinton Art Show, and a Merchant's Choice award for her work at Edmond's Spring Creek Art Show last weekend.

Fixing Barbaro

Fixing Barbaro
Ruella Yates
24" x 36" Acrylic, Brass, Brass Wire, and Paper Collage on Canvas
This painting was intended to be a Spirit Horse painting, without collage, when Barbaro's race ended tragically. With reporters speculating whether he could be saved to stand at stud, I went to the hardware store for materials and "fixed" him. Here's to Barbaro, and all his gallant ancestors, and hopefully, descendants! ~Ruella

Horse Mask

Horse Mask Ruella Yates 10" x 8" Watercolor, Clay, Leather, and Silver on Clayboard

Outline on Orange

Outline on Orange
Ruella Yates
11" x 14" Acrylic on Canvas

Spirit Horse in Red Sky by Ruella Yates

Spirit Horse in Red Sky
Ruella Yates
16" x 20" Encaustic and Acrylic on Paper on Hardboard

De-tomaha Nah-te Spirit

De-tomaha Nah-te Spirit
Ruella Yates, 2006
30" x 30" Acrylic on Canvas
A special thank you to Thompson Williams, Caddo artist, for
the name, which means Horse-Woman in the Caddo language.

De-tomaha Nah-te

I'm delighted to have met Thompson and Rhonda Williams, noted Native American artists, this weekend. They are featured artists at Adalante Gallery on The Paseo, Oklahoma City. Thompson, a member of the Caddo Tribe, still speaks his native language, and gave me the Caddo words for Horse Woman: De-tomaha Nah-te. I love knowing these ancient and beautiful words. I plan to sign my next painting in the Spirit Horse series with them. Thank you, Thompson. Thompson's work may be viewed at http://thompsonwilliams.blogspot.com.
Rhonda's work may be viewed at http://otoegirl.blogspot.com.

Spirit Horse Paintings by Ruella Yates

Waterfall (Spirit Horse Series), 29.5" x 22", Acrylic and Collage

Prairie Storm (Spirit Horse Series), 12" x 16", Acrylic/Collage
Lake Gathering (Spirit Horse Series), Acrylic
Hilltop (Spirit Horse Series), 9" x 9", Encaustic

Spirit Horse Art by Ruella Yates

Sunburst (Spirit Horse Series), watercolorFor Want of a Horse (Spirit Horse Series), PosterImage
Guardian Angels (Spirit Horse Series), PosterImage from photograph
Spirit Horses at Yellow River (Spirit Horse Series), watercolor on Claybord