Learn how to paint from a horse

One of the nation’s most nontraditional abstract artists, Justin the Artistic Horse, is scheduled to give art classes, painting demonstrations and showcase his one-of-a-kind masterpieces during ArtFest on Saturday and Sunday at Mill Race Park in Columbus.

Justin will demonstrate his unique painting talent both days at 11 a.m, and art classes are scheduled from 1 to 2 p.m. both days.

The fee is $5, and the event is open to all ages. Class proceeds will benefit Reins to Recovery Therapeutic Riding Center in Seymour.

Justin’s owner, Adonna Combs, said she first recognized his talent when he grabbed her riding whip and began drawing in the sand. The handler picks out nature-inspired colors and dips the brush in paint. From there, the Friesian horse embraces the brush with his mouth, blends to make his own creation and tops the piece off with his signature hoof print.

“There are always surprises along the way,” Combs said. “The unexpected usually improves the paintings in ways that humans couldn’t have imagined.”

Many of the paintings, which have been sold across North America, have apparent shapes of horses in them, Combs said. One of Justin’s most popular pieces named “Self Portrait” is an image of a horse that coincidentally imitates Justin’s playful personality.

“When he paints, he is in the moment and enjoys the process,” Combs said.

The seventh annual ArtFest, featuring more than 70 artists, is from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.