eren Gilfoyle-McGroarty, perhaps our best-known British model horse artist, was introduced to the hobby in 1970, though she had been sculpting horses long before that. Originally, she sculpted "Galexis" models from self-hardening clays, but this medium wasn't suffiently durable; once she was introduced to Breyers, she began customizing them eagerly. Inspired by Pamela du Boulay's beautiful Rydals, she too used airbrushing in combination with haired manes and tails to create the realism that she strived for. She was the first to have a customized Breyer win a British national championship!
Keren helped to pioneer the extremes to which customizing could be taken, combining partial resculpting with repositioning to create models that were often completely unrecognizable from the molds they originally came from. Even the word "customize"--a term used as essential model horse terminology tody--was coined by Keren years ago. In 1986, Keren worked together with Black Horse Ranch to produce the hobby's first professionally produced resincast, an Arabian stallion shown here.
Keren has been busy sculpting in wax with plans to release a line of resins and pewter pieces starting sometime in 1997. She still customizes Breyers, and uses acrylic airbushing as her painting medium. As well, Keren is an accomplished tack maker, and has a small line of successful and popular English tack kits that she produces for fellow enthusiasts.
When she's not working on her sculptures, Keren is a full-time graphic designer, and is also a published novellist. She is lucky enough to be a horse owner and has her hands full with four Arabians, which she also uses for frequent reference in her sculpting!
If you would like to get in touch with Keren, her email and snail mail addresses are below:
28 College Road
Nottingham NG9 4AS ENGLAND
Top: Melek Es Surur, light grey Arabian stallion customized from the Breyer Traditional Proud Arabian Mare and owned by Keren Gilfoyle-McGroarty
Middle: WV Dark Karmah, bay overo Arapinto customized from the BHR Arabian resin by Karen Gerhardt and last owned by Carol Gerhard
Bottom: Mr. Mogg, bay tobiano Arapinto stallion customized from the Hagen-Renaker small Amir and owned by Keren Gilfoyle-McGroarty; created in 1980 with airbrush and acrylic glazes. This model is a British National Live Champion!