I first saw this beautiful saddle while visiting my friend on his ranch up in Los Olivos, CA (NW of Santa Barbara) about a year ago. It was tucked back amidst dozens of saddles inside a storage trailer and immediately caught my attention. I drove back up months later with all my camera gear to professionally shoot it for future reference material. This painting is the first of several from that opportunity. As you can see in the detail shots below, I really had some fun with the metal work and leather. Those circular metal conchos took about 2 hours apiece.
If you watch the timelapse video of this painting-in-process, you'll notice it's appropriately to the tune of "The Cisco Kid" by WAR. Aside from obvious flare and style exuded in the gorgeous adornments of this saddle making Cisco Kid an apropos name, it's a bit of homage to my father. Although I enjoyed this music playing in the house as a little boy, I also envision it as the theme song to my Dad walking down the street in the '70s with his afro and cut-offs. His style was the epitome of confidence and flair, something I try to embody many years later.....especially when I rock my mustache :) The name goes one step further. When my Mom and Dad got married, they sold her muscle car and tricked out a Ford conversion van for a 6 week honeymoon adventure touring the national parks of the western United States. Their trucker call signs for the journey? None other than "Lady Sunshine" and the "Cisco Kid"