Nicki Forde-Ficocelli is a self-taught contemporary visual artist who creates captivating equine art. She enjoys painting a variety of equestrian scenes from sporting horses to wild mustangs of the American west. It’s her joy to create an experience for the viewer, whether that’s the feeling of freedom and belonging or the unity and bond between horse and human.

Working from her home studio in historic downtown Leesburg, Florida, Nicki takes her lifelong love for all things equestrian along with her core belief of kindness over cruelty and channels that into her paintings, which have become her advocacy work on behalf of the American mustang. Nicki realizes that art is a powerful force, and through art we can share our truths and create connections that will change our world for the better.

Nicki received a degree in Communications from International Fine Arts College in Miami in 1993. The two-year private art school had a main focus of communications arts where Nicki learned about graphic design and advertising. Soon after completing her education she began a job with an advertising agency in central Florida which was the beginning of a 25 year career in graphic design. After decades of deferring her love of making art, in 2016 she decided to change the course of her creative career. The simple act of making an illustration for her wedding invitations created the spark that turned into the fine art and illustration business she calls Drawing on my Heart. Today she uses her skills in communications to tell stories with her paintings.

It’s her dream to be a part of a positive movement of humane treatment for America’s mustangs. Her paintings hang in private collections and are featured in local galleries.

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