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Latest & Greatest

Behind the Scenes: The Making of Icelandic Horses

Hi Everyone, 

I’m so excited to be here today sharing a behind the scenes look at my latest series release, Icelandic Horses. It’s no secret that I love showcasing stunning animals in my artwork like in my series Gray Malin at The Parker and Far Far Away. However, this experience was slightly different from the others I’ve had in the past because rather than bringing exotic animals with me to set, I had the opportunity to work with the wild horses native to Iceland. With the stunning backdrop of Iceland’s dramatic landscape, each of these images is truly special. 

Before you read on, we created a 60 second behind the scenes video to give you an inside look at what it was like on location:

Icelandic Horses from Gray Malin on Vimeo.

I was inspired to create this series by a painting I saw while visiting some friends in Sweden. It made me start to imagine shooting striking portraits of horses that had an unexpected twist. After doing further research, I was so captivated by the long flowing manes of the native Icelandic Horses that I decided I needed to shoot this project on location in Iceland. This series celebrates the beauty of the equine with a whimsical flair and I hope you all love it as much as I loved creating it.

 

Although working with animals is always a challenge in itself, the biggest challenge of all was the harsh wind that was blowing all day long (not to mention the frigid cold). After spending hours styling the horses' wigs, the minute we’d step outside, the winds would be so strong that it would blow the wigs entirely off of the horses' heads. It took a lot of patience to get through that frustration but we were able to persevere and execute almost all of the looks we had brought along with us.

 

This would not have come together if it weren’t for the amazing team we had working with us in Iceland. We worked with a local horse farmer and his wife who were able to help us select horses that had striking features and docile demeanors, which made for the most interesting photographs and the easiest process. We also worked with a professional hairstylist. Lucky for us, she owned horses of her own too, so she had lots of experience working with them. She customized the wigs ahead of time, sewing two wigs together per style so that they would comfortably fit atop each horse’s head. Her help was critical in getting the perfect shot.

 

Thank you all so much for joining me behind the scenes of Icelandic Horses. This was truly such a fun and exciting project for me and I’m so grateful to our locally-based team and Team GM for all the helping hands they provided on set. I hope this insight has given you a deeper look into the process of getting these shots and gives you a new perspective on the series. 

You can add a portrait from the series to your collection here

Cheers! 

Xx

Gray

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