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All Tucked In

All Tucked In, sculpture by Ellen Woodbury

Special Little Foal

This stone sculpture is a private commission to celebrate the birth of a little foal named Mingo. I have been a horse person most of my life, and this project was a joy to sculpt.

My client shared stories and photos of little Mingo with me , and I feel like I know him even though we never met face to face.


The stone is Silverdale Limestone, formed from the build-up and compression of billions of seashells in the ancient inland sea which is now Kansas. It is a very soft limestone, but holds an edge beautifully.

There are many bits and particles of fossilized shell and protozoa in the stone which give it a subtle pattern and vary the hardness of the stone.

These fossilized inclusions posed no challenge when carving, but the finishing phase proved to be a challenge.  I needed diamond jewelers files and diamond sanding pads in order to maintain a smooth surface due to the very hard particles mixed in with the very soft stone.  Diamonds on limestone, how surprising!

The sculpture is sanded to 180 grit to keep a soft matte finish to the stone. I learned from my client that a young foal’s hair is not shiny, so this was a happy coincidence.


The sculpture is about light and life.

I played with the planar and curved design in the little colt to create many angled surfaces.  The forms are described with light and shadow as light moves across them. The overall color of the stone is consistent biege and the shadows and highlights provide color and interest.

The sculpture comes alive with the introduction of light.

New Space, Great Vibes

“All Tucked In” is the first sculpture I made in my new studio space at the Purple Door Studio, located in Denver. It is a wonderful, magical place to work.

I share a huge warehouse space with 8 professional fine art sculptors.  It is totally inspiring and educational to sculpt there.  Stonies’ Paradise.

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All Tucked In

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