At some point in our lives, every equestrian has dreamed of riding our horse through an enchanted forest, snow-capped mountain peak or majestic castle. Maybe you wished every day that unicorns or pesgasi were real. Professional photographer Jamie Mammano can give you a truly unique work of art that features you and your horse inside the fairy tail of your dreams. And all it takes is a simple photo.
Entirely self-taught, Mammano has been working in photography since 2010. She works almost exclusively with horses, though she loves to work with any animal.
“I enjoy any creature that has a sunny, spirited disposition, with owners (or pet parents) to match,” she told iHeartHorses.
Since childhood, she has worked with many types of art forms, from pencil drawings to Polymer Clay. She uses her very vivid imagination, as well as inspiration from the world around her, to create her art.
“People love their pets and their lives, but sometimes, they long to see the fantasy version. This is where artists like myself come in,” she explains. “The art I create is referred to as a ‘Composite’, where we take many, many elements (images, lighting, digital painting, etc.) and bring them together to create a work of art. It takes time and can be a challenge, as no two images are alike.”
While it is easier for her to use photos she has taken as a base, she can use any image that is high resolution and clear. She said she has even used cell phone images in the past, but many times they can’t be used because they are too small and/or not as crisp and sharp as she would like. She says the best are files of 500kb, or when possible, the original jpg (or RAW file).
Mammano is located in California, but she travels a lot for shoots, so you may be able to schedule a shoot with her when she is headed your way.
Keeping The Horses Pure
One of the things I like best about her work is what she states very clearly: she will not Photoshop a horse to change their conformation. She believes in representing the horse truthfully. As for their owners/riders? Well, she’s open that:
Every one of us, as humans, longs to have something tweaked. We never see ourselves as beautiful as we actually are, in an image. This is nothing new. When I receive requests to “help them look their best," or trim up their waistlines, or chins, I do. Because it’s the portrayal of the very best version of themselves, I have no problem with giving the person a more svelte countenance, a trimmer figure, or years lifted from their skin... Or even something as simple as "more hair." It’s a painting, after all… and something good for the soul. Many images have complete clothing makeovers as well.
She will enhance your horse with a magical feel, through the addition of a unicorn horn, wings, fairy dust, etc.
The Finished Product
While many artists can do what she does, Mammano stands out above the rest with her quality. Many of her pieces are enlarged to over 24 inches long, without loss of detail or crispness. This makes her artwork perfect for someone looking for that main piece to accent their home or barn. She prides herself on making clean work that prints out well on any format and in large size, because she knows that what her clients want.
Which brings us to – what can you do with her images? Practically anything! Aside from prints suitable for framing and display, if you want your images on merchandise she can make arrangements. She also has a basic product line you can check out here. She offers everything from mugs to shower curtains!
Turnaround time is anywhere from a day to a couple weeks, depending on complexity.
“Darker works, or those that are more detailed and more ornate, can sometimes take longer,” she explains. “It’s art, and digital painting is no different than traditional, (though, there isn’t as much of a mess, lol) in time and effort into the work. Printing is to be accounted for, after the creation time. I tend to be a perfectionist and want the images to WOW the viewer. So I will take a little more time, if I feel it's worth it.”
Her prices start at just $100-150 for non-commercial works, which seems like a fantasy itself when you think about the work she does. All work includes a copyright release that will be needed if the client chooses to go the personal printing route. She also places the file on the FineArtAmerica.com website, for ease of ordering at reasonable rates, in both print and canvas options. For commercial creations (you should see her stallion ads!), where the work is commissioned for re-sale and the full rights are released with the piece, it’s a different pricing structure.
If you are interested in having her create a truly unique one-of-a-kind art piece for you, you can message her directly on Facebook. This is the best way to reach her as she checks it frequently. Here are a few more examples of her amazing work that brings fairy tales to life.