Random House contacted me last year to illustrate a "special edition" in the HORSE DIARIES series for this Christmas. This was such a nice surprise, as they said they were stopping the series at #10. Which was sad, because my daughter Whitney wrote #5 and #10, and they are both popular and selling well. JINGLE BELLS is a Clydesdale, and the book is set in Wisconsin in 1915.
Below is a reference photo I took of the horse for the back cover. I was lucky to find a good model - there is a draft horse rescue center near me in Palmer, MA - Blue Star Equiculture. They do great work with rescuing draft horses as well as other breeds, as well as education and outreach.
Below are two of my favorite scenes from the interior of JINGLE BELLS.