This is a painting of the Nunley Brothers cattle. They have ranches in several different parts of Texas. In one area they focus on their Santa Gertrudis base herd, raising replacement heifers and in another they take Santa Gertrudis cows and breed them to Hereford bulls and get cherry red, motley-face calves. They have a production sale and sell all of the calves. If anyone is interested in some quality motley-faced heifers visit their website: www.nunleybrothers.com/. Their grandfather started with the Santa Gertrudis cattle and passed down the cowherd and the desire to ranch to the brothers.
I started this painting when I was really sick. I have a different relationship with this painting than I do with all of the others. This was the second one of these I did, because both of the brothers wanted an original of this same painting. But when I was supposed to start painting I found out that I had, as Forrest Gump says, “the cancer”. I had a type of slower growing thyroid cancer, which was not life threatening at that point, but it did require surgery and radiation–rendering me very sick for several months. I have always been a very active, independent Texas woman! So to be weak and vulnerable was a big change. I felt like a dark fog had come upon me–I had neither physical nor emotional strength. But I had promised to get this painting done! So I pulled myself off the couch and made a nest on the floor and started painting. It gave me a reason to get up and something to look foreword to. I learned how important it is for a person to have some responsibility and to have something that depends on them to get done, especially during a time of recovery. I also learned that no matter what may happen God is good and He loves me. That is just as true when I am blessed with health as when I am struggling with sickness. While I was dealing with my cancer, country singer Joey Feek and her family were dealing with hers. I had seen Joey and Rory in concert while I was in college. Since then I have been a fan of theirs. I am healing and starting to live my life as it was before. Joey just lost her battle with cancer and she has gone to be with Jesus. Her life really made an impact on me: she lived well, she suffered well and praised God. I hope I can do the same.