Romeo paints No. 19

Original art painted by a horse.

Diary of DaVinci
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Artist Cheryl Ward's Painting Horses on CBS Early Show
Now live on CBS

Watch Cheryl Ward and her painting horses in their national television debut on The CBS News Early Show, below.

Can't see the video?
Watch it online at CBS.

NEWS. . .

Horse Pucky comic strip sampleWard Launches Training Blog & Comic Strip
March 2009 - Floral City, Florida

Cheryl Ward continues her experiments with her four horses using primarily attraction-based methods and posts her findings on her new blog, I Feel Good, My Horse Feels Good: The Beauty and Simplicity of Training with Attraction.

And to balance the more serious side of her training posts, she's also created a comic strip, Horse Pucky (sample above), also posted at her blog.

Teach Your Horse to PaintTeach Your Horse to Paint: Ward Shares Her Method
January 1, 2009 - Floral City, Florida

Over four years and four horses later, Artist/Trainer Cheryl Ward has encapsulated how she taught her four horses how to paint. She's written a 10-page tutorial that details the steps involved in teaching any horse how to make their mark on canvas.

  • Teach Your Horse to Paint, By Cheryl Ward
  • Free Download
  • PDF Format, 10 pages
  • Print, share with friends and enjoy!
  • Click here to Download

Visitors at Equifest 2008 - Click for more photosRomeo & Juliet Bring Laughter and Smiles to Equifest 2008
April 12, 2008 - Lake Helen, Florida

Artist Cheryl Ward and painters Romeo and Juliet wowed the crowds at Equifest 2008 with custom paintings, book signings and training demonstrations.

Visitors to the Painting Horses' tent were able to pick their own colors, collaborate on composition and watch their own paintings come to life. The horses also signed copies of the children's book they star in, Home Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet. Ward shared her insights into the positive motivation methods she uses with the horses, giving demonstrations for spectators and reporters.


Romeo and Juliet sign books

Horses Sign Books at Two Libraries in Florida
Dec. 22, 2007 - Citrus County, Florida

Artist, author and trainer Cheryl Ward appeared with her horses Romeo and Juliet at two Florida libraries as they autographed copies of their children's book, Home Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet. They appeared at two locations on the same day, Coastal Region Library in Crystal River, Florida and Lakes Region Library in Inverness, Florida. The horses also demonstrated their painting skills for library patrons.

In the children's book, Romeo and Juliet grow tired of eating grass and living in a barn. They decide they want to move into a house and eat cake with a Chihuahua! Read more about the book here.


Juliet paints at Heritage Days in Floral City, Fla.Heritage Days in Floral City, Florida
Saturday, Dec. 1, 2007 - Floral City, Florida

Artist, author and trainer Cheryl Ward appeared with her horses Romeo and Juliet as part of Heritage Days in Floral City, Florida on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2007.

It was a clear, sunny day in Floral City and the horses painted and signed copies of their books all day.

Tent and paintingsFlorida Equine Capital Expo Hosts Romeo & Juliet
Nov. 16-18, 2007 - HITS Show Grounds, Ocala, Florida

Romeo and Juliet appeared at the Florida Equine Capital Expo in Ocala, Florida on November 16-18, 2007 and signed copies of their children's book, Home Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet. They also created custom paintings for visitors.

Romeo in his corralThe location for the horses couldn't have been better, right next to Texas Thunder! It's an impressive sight to see the giant Percherons, marching out to their performances. Quite a sight.

The Expo was held in the heart of horse country at HITS Post Time Farm, 13710 US Hwy 27, Ocala, Florida 34482. The show grounds include 300 acres, 26 permanent barns, 400 permanent stalls, RV sites with full hookups and ample parking.

Texas Thunder marches out







Horses Appear at Benefit for Humane Society
Nov. 4, 2007 - Citrus County Auditorium - Inverness, Florida

Room for One More Pet Rescue and the Humane Society of Citrus County (HSCC) hosted Romeo and Juliet at the 2nd Annual HSCC Pet Expo on a beautiful day filled with pets, paintings and prizes. The horses demonstrated their painting skills for the attendees and also signed copies of the children's book they star in, Home Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet.

Spectator looks through a book

Juiliet paints in her corral








Museum of Florida ArtMuseum Exhibits Horses' Paintings
April 13-June 17, 2007 - Deland, Florida

Photo by Museum of Florida Art

The Museum of Florida Art in Deland, Florida, hosted the paintings of Romeo, Juliet and DaVinci in the exhibition Equus III, The Art of the Horse, from April 13 to June 17, 2007.

The Art of the Horse exhibit was the first location DaVinci's paintings were displayed publicly.

  • The Museum of Florida Art
    600 N. Woodland Boulevard
    DeLand, Florida, 32720
  • Phone: (386) 734-4371

Romeo signs his book at Author DayHorses Sign their Books on Author Day in Floral City
April 28, 2007 - Off the Beaten Path, Floral City, Florida

Romeo and Juliet signed copies of their new book, Home Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet, on "Author Day" at Off the Beaten Path (see Romeo at right).

Instead of holding paint brushes in their mouths as they normally do when they paint, the horses hold markers in their teeth and sign the inside page of the children's book. Cheryl made a book holder with an opening just the right size for the horses to make their mark.

Juliet paints on Author DayIn addition to signing their books, the horses also demonstrated their painting skills (see Juliet at right).







Paintings by the horses on display at Equifest 2007Equifest 2007 article highlights Painting Horses
April 14, 2007 - Lake Helen, Florida

Romeo and Juliet performed for visitors at Equifest 2007 by painting on canvas with brushes in their mouths and by signing copies of their children's book, Home Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet.

Cherl Ward collaborates with her horses at Equifest 2007One reporter, Amy Rippel of the Daytona Beach News Journal, noted in her articlethe following day, "Although Ward...and her horses were only a small part of the Equifest Family Festival...they garnered big attention."


Good Bird magazineBird magazine publishes Cheryl Ward's article about horses
Spring 2007 - Nationwide

Cover photo by Helen Dishaw

An article about horses in a bird magazine? You bet.

The mission of Good Bird magazine! is to "empower the human/animal bond with positive reinforcement." Since Cheryl's work with horses matches that mission, specifically her work with DaVinci, she became a natural choice for the magazine.

In working with DaVinci, a horse who's recovering from an equine Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, she discovered that by treating him as if he were a wild bird that had no restraints and could fly away at any moment, he could rapidly improve.

(See Installment 2: Wings from The Diary of DaVinci for more about DaVinci's free flight training).

Cheryl's article, "If Horses Had Wings," appears in the Spring 2007 issue of Good Bird magazine! on pp. 79-84.

Citrus County Chronicle features JulietCitrus County Chronicle runs front page story on Romeo & Juliet
February 20, 2007 - Citrus County, Florida

Photo by Dave Sigler, Citrus County Chronicle

The Citrus County Chronicle, a Florida newspaper, publishes a front page story about Romeo and Juliet and features Juliet at her easel as the photo of the day.

Click to watch the news story on Tampa Bay's 10Romeo & Juliet appear on Tampa Bay's 10 (CBS)
February 12, 2007 - Tampa Bay, Florida

A news story about Romeo & Juliet, the painting horses, and their new book aired on Tampa Bay's Channel 10 (CBS television) on Feb. 12 during the Life Around the Bay show.

Haslam's Book Store now carries Home Sweet HomeHaslam's Book Store in St. Petersburg, Florida now carries Home Sweet Home
January 22, 2007 - St. Petersburg, Florida

Get signed copies of Home Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet at Haslam's Book Store in St. Pete, Florida. If you've never visited Haslam's, you're in for a real treat.

Family owned and operated for over 70 years, this charming bookstore features two regal felines who greet visitors from their perch on top of the store's computer monitor. What better place for a book about canine and equine four-legged friends! If you like books, you'll likely want to spend hours perusing the outstanding selection of new and used books at Haslam's.

Cheryl and Sam signing at Off the Beaten PathBooks and paintings find sweet home at Off the Beaten Path
January 10, 2007 - Floral City, Florida

Authors Cheryl Ward and Sam Sharnik signed copies of their new book, Home Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet on January 20, 2007 at the Grand Opening of Off the Beaten Path, a new shop featuring local artisans, books and music in historic Floral City, Florida.

The store's dynamic owner, Denise Ball, held a lively grand opening with skateboarders, glass blowers, musicians, woodcarvers, artists, authors and more.

Click for Sample PagesHome Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet now available
December 14, 2006 - Floral City, Florida

Romeo & Juliet star in their new children's book, Home Sweet Home with Romeo & Juliet, a photographic book about two real horses who move into a house and eat cake with a Chihuahua.

Davinci with CherylDavinci finds "art therapy" with Romeo & Juliet
October 14, 2006 - Floral City, Florida

A new horse, Davinci, joined Romeo & Juliet to learn to paint and, more importantly, to trust. Follow the progress of this special horse on the Diary of DaVinci page.

A WhisperConservation group auctions A Whisper
July 26, 2006 - eBay

Romeo's talents have gone to the birds. His painting, A Whisper, was auctioned on eBay and helped raise money for the International Association of Avian Trainers and Educators, a group dedicated to increasing awareness of the natural world.


AHP awardRomeo receives an award
June 24, 2006 - Orlando, Florida

Romeo received an award from the American Horse Publications for being a "True Equine Artist." He placed third out of 53 entries in the category of Feature Article for the article titled “Picasso Fino” in The Gaited Horse Magazine.

Since horses were not allowed to attend the event (chairs not big enough?) Cheryl and Sam accepted the award for Romeo. To make Romeo feel more included, Cheryl wore a dress, shoes and purse - and Sam a tie - all painted by Romeo.

Romeo gets hitched!
March, 2006 - New Port Richey, Florida

Not to a cart, but to Juliet (left), his new pasture mate and first student.


Holiday greeting cards painted by Romeo well received through
Holiday season, 2005 - Nationwide

Photo: Romeo paints Oh Christmas TreePhoto: Romeo paints Lovely Branches

See these two Romeo Originals turned into festive, unique greeting cards exclusively at

Horses in Art Magazine - Winter 2005Equine Vision Magazine publishes Romeo's story in Horses in Art
Winter 2005 - Nationwide

Romeo didn't know that Horses in Art included human artists too!


The Gaited Horse Magazine - Winter 2005The Gaited Horse Magazine announces Romeo's greeting cards
Winter 2005 - Nationwide

Romeo's story appears along with an announcement about his greeting cards (see "Holiday greeting cards..." above).


The Horsemen's Yankee Pedlar Magazine - Oct 2005Horsemen's Yankee Pedlar features Romeo in News in the Nation
October 2005 - Nationwide

If you find a copy, check out page 181 for a photo and nice blurb about Romeo.


Paso Fino Horse World Magazine - May 2005Cheryl Ward's article about Romeo published in Paso Fino Horse World
May 2005 - Nationwide

Were you able to read about Romeo's journey as told by his human in the May 2005 issue? If you get a copy, check out the beautiful layout by the magazine's editors!

The Gaited Horse - Spring 2005The Gaited Horse Magazine - Romeo's on the cover!
Spring 2005 - Nationwide

Did you see the Spring 2005 issue in bookstores, tack stores and other horsey shops? He's an official cover-gelding now.





Closeup of painting display at Little Everglades SteeplechaseLittle Everglades Steeplechase hosts Romeo
March 6, 2005 - Dade City, Florida

Romeo participated in the 2005 Little Everglades Steeplechase, not as a racehorse but as a painting horse, of course.

Doe Lake Thanksgiving Campout
November 25-26, 2004 - Ocala National Forest, Florida

Romeo participates in the Sunshine State Horse Council's annual Thanksgiving Campout at Doe Lake in the Ocala National Forest. He paints, trailrides, auctions off his artwork to benefit the Council and makes new friends.


Gulfside Elementary welcomes Romeo
November 15, 2004 - Holiday, Florida

Romeo appears at Gulfside Elementary to paint for students, teachers, and staff at the Great American Teach-In. Owner Cheryl Ward shares what Romeo's taught her about horsemanship and art. Tampa Bay's 10 (WTSP Tampa/St. Pete) covers the event and airs an uplifting story just a few hours later on Life Around the Bay.

All That Glitters auctions a Romeo Original
November 13, 2004 - Florida Aquarium, Tampa, Florida

Romeo’s paintings appear in the MacDonald Training Center’s 7th Annual All That Glitters Wine Tasting and Silent Auction fundraiser at the Florida Aquarium. Romeo's work appears both on canvas and on Cheryl's dress, shoes and purse (see "Romeo and Cheryl venture into fashion design" below).

Guest artist paints with Romeo
November 7, 2004 - New Port Richey, Florida

Gifted artist Alison Caltrider-Knapp collaborates with Romeo, selecting colors or asking for Romeo's color choices and handing him brushes.


Romeo and Cheryl explore fashion design
November 7, 2004 - New Port Richey, Florida

Romeo expands his repertoire of media by painting on a black dress for Cheryl to wear at the MacDonald Training Center's 7th annual All That Glitters Wine Tasting and Silent Auction (see above), held November 13, 2004. He also paints her purse and shoes to match.


The Plaid Horse Magazine highlights Romeo
November 5, 2004 - Nationwide, USA

An article by Cindy Taylor about Romeo appears in the November issue of The Plaid Horse Magazine with photos of Romeo painting and several of his creations.

Romeo paints for the Myakka River Riders
October 31, 2004 - Hudson, Florida

Romeo paints in the company of his peers, other horses, for the Myakka River Riders campout in the woods next to State Road 52. This is Romeo's first time painting on location in front of other horses. He paints, plays ball and wipes his easel with a bandana. Cheryl shares what Romeo's taught her about clicker training and painting.


Willow Arts Festival hosts Romeo
October 16, 2004 - Odessa, Florida

Romeo paints and sells artwork at the Willow Arts' 2nd Annual Front Porch Festival to benefit the Joshua House. Over 1,000 people attend the event and see Romeo paint by the lake. This is Romeo's first public appearance painting. He loves the attention and paints throughout the day.


Friends of Little Manatee auction Romeo's artwork
October 16, 2004 - Wimauma, Florida

Romeo donates a painting to the Friends of Little Manatee's 7th annual Mystery Map Event at Little Manatee State Park. Romeo can't attend since he's painting at Willow Arts the same day.


Articles about Romeo published throughout Florida
October 2-3, 2004 - Statewide, Florida

Articles about Romeo appear in newspapers throughout Florida, including Tallahassee, Naples, Gainesville, Venice and Lakeland.

Tampa Tribune publishes article about Romeo
September 26, 2004 - Tampa, Florida

An in-depth article about Romeo appears in the Tampa Tribune's Sunday edition of the Metro section, featuring the complete story of Romeo's path to painting, photos of Romeo in action and several of his paintings.

© 2004-2007 Cheryl Ward & Sam Sharnik
Last updated March 27, 2009