Let's talk horses with Jo GG Barret, the artist behind Urban Fraggle Modern Equine Art

Let's talk horses with Jo GG Barret, the artist behind Urban Fraggle Modern Equine Art

Find out why Jo loves all things horsey...

When/how did you get into horses?

I was around the age of 13. My next door neighbour had her dun gelding, 'Simmy' stabled in the garage in her granddads back garden (I know, every girls little dream). I remember looking at our garage (which had a 'stable' style door and dreaming that a pony's head was looking out).. I had been having lessons (my step mum was an avid show jumper in her youth and was encouraging this new found love of mine). I was a plucky little rider back then and I was always put on the most difficult ponies at the riding school.. I remember being thrown 7 times in one session by a little bay called Bracken!

I was watching a film which my dad was forcing me to watch to keep the fact that they were bringing a pony from the field to sneak into the back garden. After my initial sulking, I started to enjoy the film, until my dad interrupted and asked me to let Max (our German Shepard) out in the garden. I was irritated by this request given I didn't want to watch the film in the first place!

As I stepped outside, my mum, step mum and Simmy's owner Susie were stood holding this scruffy little bright bay pony. I asked her name and my dad said 'well that's for you to name her'. I squealed 'Is she MINE!!'. As you can imagine I didn't sleep that night! Abbie was my first pony.

What do you love most about horses?

They are such forgiving animals. And if we are willing to learn then they are willing to teach. They are also a true reflection of ourselves. Goes without saying, their beauty, strength and spirit.

What do you hate most about horses?

The cost. The frustrations that come with learning and figuring out how best to suit your own horse and their needs, so you can have a calm healthy horse.

What’s been your equestrian highlight?

I would say when I was competing my pony many years ago. We won many championships in showjumping.

Oh, and more recently discovering Phillipe Karl and his methods for teaching lightness. This has been a whole new learning process for me, and makes complete sense from a bio mechanic point of view.

Tell us about your worst fall?

I've been lucky that I haven't had any serious injury from my falls… but my worst is probably when Nancy (my current mare) bolted and threw me (which she had been doing for the past year!). I banged my head, and that's when I decided I needed to find another way as my current way wasn't working for either of us, and so our journey of learning and changing started..

Which horse(s) rock(ed) your world?

All of them equally have brought experiences into my world.

If you weren’t working in the equestrian industry what would you be doing?

I do work part time in a country pub whilst building on my current business of Modern Equine Art

What’s your best horsey life hack?

Never stop searching for another way. Horses are complex creatures and its a privilege for us to share our world with them.

Find out more about Jo and check out her stunning work on her portfolio

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