I've just started doing bareback/bridleless work with my boy Bundy. Hoping to get some pictures soon :]
First, I experimented with stopping. To me, stopping is the MOST important control to have in place before you go bridleless. I started offf using my breastplate instead of reins. I would be walking/trotting/cantering around and use my seat and a small tug on the breastplate to stop. Reins were there to back up if needed. I was lucky, my horse took to it like a fish to water! I think he stops better without the bridle, lol.
He already neck reined, so my basics, stopping and steering, were in place.
My first try, I first did a lot fo groundwork with him. Backing, forward, turns on uhaunches, etc without a halter. Then I jumped on. I find it easier bareback as well, as seat cues are a lot clearer. I use a bit of rope around his neck for now. I neck rein using the rope and use my seat to stop.
I've now progressed to where I can do abrupt canter/halt transitions, lope both leads, back up, haunch turn/rollback, and slow spins. I can also ride him out in the open.
It's all about experimenting and having fun!