Many People Ask-What is equestrian photography?

Many People Ask-What is equestrian photography?

Equestian Jumping

Many People Ask-What is equestrian photography?

After the last post I was asked by some readers to dive a little more into my personal project so the next few posts will be doing just that.

Since horses first showed up on Earth, they have been painted and admired for their beauty and spirit, and once photography was invented, photographed both alone and with their riders. The first known painting of a horse, painted during the Paleolithic era, was discovered in the caves of Lascaux in France. Images of horse and rider moving together is one of the most graceful images that can be portrayed through photography. Eadweard Muybridge was the first to photograph the gait of a horse, to prove that all four feet come off the ground during a gallop.

Photographers such as Bob Langrish and Matthew Seed both understand the moving moments that can be captured through the art of equestrian photography. Equestrian photography is, in fact, photographing horses in relation to their riders, and vice versa. Their photographs are in and of themselves beautiful and moving pieces of art that speak loudly of the relationship between horse and rider. Photographing horse and rider together can demonstrate the unique communication and relationship between them.

Photographing at horse shows

One of the most important things to remember when photographing at a horse show is that, while it is great to get up-close and personal shots of the horses and their riders, getting permission to photograph and taking great care not to spook unprepared horses is vital. Wear neutral-colored clothing and always get clear and concise permission from the riders and/or owners.

One of the best styles of photographs that can be achieved is a photo of the horse and rider moving together through a show course. It is the same for Western as it is for English dressage. When it is possible to get a good angle, get it. Do whatever you must to set up in a location that favors the horses and their riders.

Photographing horse and rider 

At times, getting a photo of horse and rider at their own stable or their own setting can be just what is needed to bring out aspects of their relationship that a photographer may not otherwise achieve. Be sure that for shoots like this you have plenty of assistance, but not so many people around that it may make the horse uneasy.

Horse and rider photos may include the rider sitting atop the horse, the rider standing near their horse’s head and holding the reins, or even just their hands on their animal’s face in an affectionate embrace. Use of lighting is important here as well, as using too bright a light source may spook the horse or cause the subjects to squint, producing undesirable photos.

The summary to be found in all of this is that equestrian photography has its own set of rules when, if followed, can provide the photographer and the equestrian with dazzling photos.

Be sure to select a high quality camera that captures movement flawlessly when exploring the world of equestrian photography. A camera of lesser quality may take what could be a high quality photo opportunity and turn it into a flop. That would be a shame.

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