10 | Elephant Prathida
Artist Prathida with Chinnakorn
She was born at the Thai Elephant Conservation Center in Lampang, Thailand.
She is sweet and friendly with humans. She has slow and graceful movements and when she is not swaying side to side (something she likes to do while standing), she poses "like a Princess" according to her handlers. When she was young, Prathida liked to run away to the forest, but these days she is very attached to her mahout, who she likes to follow everywhere.
Prathida is referred to as a Princess for better reasons too, as she is one of the two special ‘Royal’ elephants at the Center, having been lucky enough to be adopted by Her Royal Highness Princess Galayani, the elder sister of His Majesty the King of Thailand. Prathida has an interesting talent for being able to spit out the stick when eating ice-creams handed to her by generous visitors.
Prathida is an accomplished artist who likes to fill the paper/canvas, using vertical strokes that seem to meander over the page like a river over the plains. Her gentle touch allows her to hold the paint on the brush for a complete movement top to bottom. It is a very distinctive and popular style all of her own making.
Prathida’s mahout is Chinnakorn Pongsan, who is was born nearby the Center in Lampang in January 1975. He started working as a mahout at the age of 19. He is has recently got married to Wacharapan.