This ceramic painting shows Alexander and Hephastion going for a morning ride, probably about a year or two after Alexander has acquired his legendary horse Bucephalus, thus while they are both in mid-teens. I was not able to get the fine detail in the faces, as this is difficult to do with glazes. The horses came out well, with Bucephalus as the more spirited , and with Alexander's seat very relaxed and quite what Xenophon would have recomended.
Below I will put the drawing from which this plate was planned. Bucephalus is usually described as black with a triangular "oxhead" marking on his forehead. Both horses are a bit more modern than the classic Parthenon horses and both seem more comfortable with their riders. Alexander of course must have been a keen observer of horse behavior if there is any truth to the story of his "taming" of Bucephalus. Some writers suggest that this was a favorite dinner story of Alexander's and that over the years it may have had some drama enhanced in the telling and re-telling.
I'd like to do this scene on canvas with the addition of space to show a couple of dogs frolicing along and a pair of swans in the background. Swans were considered symbolic of couple fidelity and Alexander and Hephastion exemplified the Greek ideal in this regard.