Most of this is beautifully done, especially the eye. Maybe it's the photo, but the lower half of the head and neck are too similar to the mane directly behind, maybe add some lights or texture. The zig zag line from the shoulder to the top of the head is a little harsh.
Reproducing the reference photo-wise, these are all right.
Where it concerns things like design, composition, picking and adjusting the reference to suit your needs rather than copying what you have at hand, expressing things beyond "here is a painting of a photo of a horse", you should study more.
your pieces are beautiful, but I think that around the areas where you used white to give brightness, you could try to mix better the shades to the color of the horse, because it is possible to see a black contour surrounding the whites... May be in the pic you choose, that whites are due to the flashes, instead natural color.
Thanks for the input. I'm self taught, no formal art education, only what I've seen in art shows and galleries. Unfortunately for me, who prefers more realism, the majority of pieces I've seen in exhibitions, at least here, are abstract or impressionist style landscapes. Beautiful pieces, but just not my style. I've just started this art journey about six months ago, with the Fresian piece being my first ever in an exhibition. The attached is the latest piece I'm working on.
The latest pic -- the head is great, nice details. For the palomino, lovely shadings and colors, really nice expression. The back legs look a little odd, though. When you have small details like that, you have to experiment maybe on another piece of paper, to see. To either blue them out, or make the details really clear, (alter the pose a bit if you have to) but lightly done, maybe just lines because it is further back.
I'm guessing you are using photo ref? I don't know where you live, but if you are want to focus on horses, it would be best if you are using your own photos and/or figure out where and how you can draw some from life. There are many websites online of artists who do horse portraits - some of them show how they do it, also check out youtube tutorials if you haven't already.
I live in the Midwest. Grew up around and have owned horses pretty much all my life. I have numerous pictures I use as reference from my own horses I've owned throughout the years. The palomino is in fact a portrait of one of my own horses. I will check out the internet as well. Thanks for the tip.
Yes, I did think you might own horses, they are very good (to me, they do not have the copied from a photo look, they are too good to say that about them), where the pictures go off a little bit, it's not from lack of knowledge of the horse, but you need a fine tuning with your drawing/shading and so forth, observational skills. The latest, I am no expert on shading and light source. In general there could be some darker darks in some places and lighter lights in others to have more contrast. I'm pretty sure you would go darker in the shadows beneath the nose. The crevice where each nostril meets the surface of the face are the deepest "indents" in the structure of the face flesh.