Well, more or less. I had a real-life pony that was somewhat Thelwell-ish, and he and I got into some adventures worthy of a Thelwell cartoon, I thought.
Why in the world his "how to draw" books don't seem to be in print I'm sure I don't know. Hello, publishers? He's funny as well as a great art teacher. Pretty please put his art how-to books back in print. Pretty, pretty please? Actually, I don't know how many he made. I just happen to have at hand "Drawing Ponies" in the Studio Drawing Series, Studio Vista Limited, London, 1966. "Drawing Ponies" I consider a small gem. I thought he had another one or two, but I might be mistaken. (Please drop a note in the comments section here if you know of others. Thanks.)
If you'd like to see samples of his work, or find out more about the artist, there's an official Norman Thelwell website.
Click on any book cover below to go to Barnes & Noble. If you buy on that visit, I get a few pennies in commission.
A Leg at Each Corner
Thelwell's Pony Cavalcade: Includes Angels on Horseback, a Leg at Each Corner and Thelwell's Riding Academy
Thelwell's Compleat Tangler
Angels on Horseback
Thelwell's Pony Panorama: Includes Thelwell's Gymkhana, Thelwell Goes West and Thelwell's Penelope
Update: I can't resist adding this excerpt from an obituary in The Sydney Morning Herald, February 26, 2004 (which credits The Telegraph, London):
Norman Thelwell, who has died aged 80, created some of the most recognisable images in equine art with his cartoons of freckled girls being bounced along on their recalcitrant spherical ponies.
His first of more than 25 cartoon books, Angels on Horseback, appeared in 1957 and has never been out of print. Like those of Giles, Thelwell's books had a place in the downstairs lavatory of almost every country house. Ponies of a certain shape and temper became known as "Thelwells".
Thelwell felt more pride at having once been the political cartoonist on the News Chronicle, and he drew many other animal and sporting subjects, but it was chiefly for his pony drawings that he was famous. Fans wrote even from overseas to tell him about things they had seen at horse shows.
Such gleanings were useful since he claimed to have no horse sense and to have ridden only once in his life. Horses, he declared, were "great windy things that'll grab your coat off your back as soon as look at you". As for humans, most "find life a bit of a problem and are pretty jumpy under the skin. It is this insecurity when dealing with other people or animals or inanimate objects that I find both comical and endearing."
Full obit here