Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Hampton Classic

This year I visited the Hampton Classic for the first time.
I was amazed at how a 60 acre field could be transformed into a mini city of equestrian delights, from the Grand Prix Jumper Ring with its grandstand seating and VIP tents to the various other smaller competition rings surrounded by pretty landscaping. The beautiful horses executing their jumps were spectacular. The variety of food vendors and boutiques offered numerous temptations. The two hours Hugh and I spent there on Tuesday went by in a flash.
art by Julie Witt
2014 Hampton Classic Exhibitor Index Cover
Winner of the Dan's Papers Junior Artwork Contest
oil painting by Jennifer Brandon via 
Horse #1617 Stedet's Lucky in Jumper Ring II
The horse above is in the Grand Prix Ring competing in the $10,000 Newsday open jumper. Competing farms bring horses to the Hampton Classic from Toronto to Florida and California. Riders, sponsors and patrons visit from all over the world.
Equestrian Success by Jennifer Brandon
oil on canvas image via
Stable Row
The first of five rows of stables.
Eighteen stabling tents house more than 1600 horses.
Farms decorate their front tack rooms with awards and photographs.
Everything and more that an equestrian lover could want or need.
Head gear, of course.
A gentleman at Dubarry modelled the Bramble jacket and was also standing in a pool of muck to underscore the water proof nature of their signature Galway boot. I was impressed. It was roasting hot and he was standing in the glaring sun with perfect poise.
Next door,  Jennifer Brandon was painting en plein air.
Jennifer Brandon
Jennifer Brandon's gallery in the Boutique Garden was filled with her portraits of horses and hounds as well as landscapes. Just a small sample of what this talented artist, designer, illustrator and photographer can do. I loved her on site painting demonstration. Art in action! Visit her website here.
image via
In the Anne Aspinall Ring, one of the Hunter competitors.
Horse #885 Chabliano Z
Geddaway Farm in Jacksonville, Florida
This year's Hampton Classic Horse Show runs until August 31st. 
Click here to vist their website.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Farm Stand Love: North Sea Farms

Glorious rows of sunflowers and zinnia at North Sea Farms.
The view I'd like to paint.
North Sea Farms has been farmed by the King family for three generations. They have everything you need to eat healty and well. Fresh vegetables, herbs, fruit, dairy products, fresh squeezed orange juice, freshly laid eggs, chicken, bacon, La Parmigiana olive oil, local jam, ice cream, Tate's baked goods and flowers for your table. No need to face the crowds in town. Who could ask for more? 
Visiting North Sea Farms, reminds me of summer visits to my Grandparents farm. Growing up in the Midwest, my brother, sister and I spent a couple of weeks each summer at our Grandparent's dairy farm in Minnesota. We always ate well, hungry as wolves after running around the farm and pastureland the entire day. I must have had a particularly voracious appetite as Grandpa played a joke on me at dinner one night by cooking an ear of field corn with the sweet corn. Offering the corn to me, he knew that I would choose the biggest ear. He had a good laugh seeing my face as I bit into the starchy chewy feed for the cows. I probably would have just put more butter on it and finished it off if my Grandmother hadn't intervened.
A variety of fresh lettuces straight from the field to your table.
Blistered Eggplant with tomatoes, olives and feta 
created and photographed by Sunday Taylor via 
Sunday Taylor has delicious suggestions for the summer menu here. Her blog Ciao Dominica is a beautifully described combination of literature, travel, gardens, cooking and more. A favorite of mine.
The refridgerator case includes cheeses from Mecox Bay Dairy.
Mecox Bay Dairy by Gordon Matheson
acrylic on canvas 20" x 30"
image via
The girls are free ranging.
Baked goods from Tate's Bake Shop, owned by Kathleen King and named after her father "Tate" King. An article about the beloved King family patriarch here  recounts some of the farm's history.
Three Long Island Barns by Wolf Kahn
pastel 20" x 30" 2000
image via
Visiting children love the farm's menagerie.
1060 Noyack Rd, Southampton, NY 11968
(631) 283-0735