As part of ongoing photography skills practice, I spent a couple of hours at this past weekend’s Mission Horse Club horse show.
Photographing horses at horse shows seems like an easy task, but in order to produce quality pictures for exhibitors MANY things need to be taken into consideration. It’s shockingly similar to the same type of multitasking that is required when you are actually riding a horse!
To get those great shots, you have to keep in mind the background of your shot, the passing of other horses through your viewfinder and the actually moment you want to capture in your frame. That doesn’t include the many possibilities of expression that may or may not be on the rider’s face!
Each gait has that magic moment that photographs so well and shows the best qualities of horse and rider, and each gait has another moment in time time that, is well- not so magic. Capturing that sharp, perfect moment is the ultimate goal.
Let’s have a look through those gaits I’m talking about.
When the judge calls for the walk, things are quieter in the arena and for the photographer. The goal here is to make walk photos more interesting. This shot was taken out of the corner, and the shape of the horse is pleasing despite the lack of action. I’m happy with this shot, the horse’s coloring is dramatic and I used lens vignetting in Photoshop to pull focus from the not so great background.
Here is that moment in time I was talking about at the trot. The horse is fully extended, the rider has her but firmly planted in the saddle.
For me, this is the ultimate moment at the canter. The horse is rocked back on it’s hindquarters, ready to strike down with the one front foot. This photo could have been framed better, I’ve accidentally cut off the bottoms of the horse’s feet. But overall, I’m happy with this shot, both rider and horse look good.
Now, not every shot I took this weekend was great, but a little help from Photoshop and some image combining, I’ve created this little piece of digital artwork on a whim. It was created by blending in a retro sky background, adjusting some of the color curves and using a painting filter to create a painted look to the horse and rider’s boot.
Today I started work on my projects for Maple Ridge Country Fest. They’ve got a great art, photography and scrapbooking component to their show- and lucky for me, I still qualify.
Searching through my photograph files on my computer, I came across this one, shot in Maple Ridge just off 256th, north of Dewdney Trunk Rd.
It’s not the most fabulous of photos, but since I absolutely love old barns, I wanted to take this plain jane photo and turn it into something special. The first and most obvious problem is the boring backdrop behind this barn, which I decided to replace with the trees in this photo taken in Allco Park.