This post first appeared on June 1, 2011
One of the most surprising things I learned about appaloosa patterns after I got my mare was how loud a pattern could be without having any underlying pink skin. When I washed Sprinkles the other day, I took a few pictures to illustrate this. In the picture above, she is wet down to the skin and the only pink under the pattern is that one small spot on her right hindquarter.
Here is a close up of the spot. Some of the darkness is the black skin and some is dark hairs interspersed in the blanket.
I also planned to get some shots of her belly. As an artist, those are often the hardest pattern references to find. Unfortunately I was not fast enough to get more than one before she was up (and filthy again).
The darker area along the midline, with the white appearing to “miter” together, is pretty typical of appaloosas with this kind of pattern, in my experience. The skin is entirely black until you get to her udder.
We added a new appaloosa to the barn this last month with a pattern very similar to Sprinkles, although I suspect that she has pink skin forming a blanket under her leopard pattern. That was actually what I had expected to find with my mare. I am going to try to get a good shot of her wet, too, to compare. In the meantime, if any readers have appaloosas (especially leopards and near-leopards) that they are willing to wet down and photograph, please consider sending the photos along. I’ll publish as many as I get!