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Michael L. 08-31-2007 06:08 AM

Equine Photography Help- any pros out there?
Hey, new here. I've never really been a big horse person, but my sister always has been, and since I'm really into photography as a hobby, she constantly pesters me to take pictures at her horse shows. I got myself a new camera last week, so she's all over me to do some photography at her next show, yet I know nothing about photographing horses.

I'm more of a macro-nature photographer than anything, so I don't even know where to start for big, slow (well, for what I'm used to) moving animals. I also understand that there are certain formalities in English riding photography. I just don't know what they are or how to work with them.

I'm using a Canon Rebel XT DSLR right now for a camera. I'm also a huge fan of the tripod in most of my "work". :)

So here's a few questions:

1) What are the more technical points of English riding photography? (like the stride and all that... I don't know any technical terms, so please forgive me.) I've taken some nice photos of horses, and then been told that the lead was incorrect or something like that. Could someone explain all this in an easy-to-understand way?

2) What lenses should I carry? Like I said, I'm a macro photographer... What's most effective and what has the best bang-for-the-buck as an all-around horse lens.

3) Tripod, or no? I know horses can be skittish. Is a tripod something that would cause a problem?

4) What ISO, Shutter Speed, etc. do you generally use? I know this is a sort of learn it as you go sort of thing, but what's a good base-line?

5) Does anyone have any links for info like the above, or perhaps some links for inspiration?

6) Any final tips? Did I miss anything?

Thanks in advance.

KANSAS_TWISTER 09-03-2007 01:23 AM's all by trial and error, this pic was taken by a digital cam less then a $100. dying for the canon rebel xti

Tanner&Flashy 09-06-2007 03:17 PM

I would think to definitely use a tripod, if she wants movement shots. It will help to keep it steady as she's moving. For shots standing still, we have some one hold something crinkly to get the horse's attention so that the ears would perk up. That's about all that I can think of since I'm no professional. I just know a little bit from what I've seen the professionals do. *shrug*

AppaloosaCowGirl 09-09-2007 12:12 AM

you dont need a tripod..

photographing horses is easy. first dont stand always squat... if you stand you make the horse and the rider look bad... and out of porportion... so position yourself (in the ring if possible) and squat down before you take your shots then pivot around as the horse moves....

I am gonna asume you know enough about shutter speed and F-stop (Apature priority) to know how to shoot movment.. (if not it isnt anyhting to look it up... (I know what to do but not how to explain it... lol)

anyway there are different ways to shoot moving things.. if they are walking you should have to move the camera... just point at the horse focus and shoot... but any faster it would be better if you focused on the horse then followed it then shot the picture....

I dont know anyhting about the camera you use.. (I use a nikon D50)

go ahead and look at my site. (the horses are under Cassis's Galleries)

there is also a horse show there but You will have to e-mail and ask for the password f if your interested

PS: I like taking Macro shots to! I have three Macro lenses!

prettypalfrey 09-09-2007 07:25 PM

If you go to digital bling .com you can see a ton of pictures maybe he would even give you pointers. Or get your sister to hire a professional they aren't that expensive and then you can watch what they do.

sweetypie16 09-11-2007 05:49 AM

mmm i love photography!! I use i Cannon, it is pretty good!! Here are some pictures i took, don't laugh!!

This is one i took of a mare and her foal grazing:

And my FAV of the three yearlings!!

What do you think??

~MavvyMyBeauty 09-11-2007 08:03 AM

Sweetypie - They're great! I love the second one!

I love taking photo's!

I was trying to take action shots yesterday.
I'm quite proud of this one:

I took loads, but i'll spare you lots of them. :lol:

What do you think?

sweetypie16 09-11-2007 08:17 AM

Mavvy, thanks auwsum!! You have some talent girl!! Your horse is beautiful!! I am glad you liked my photoes, i have more :P
This one is my second Fav:

Thats of the two broodmares...... (arrow upwards)

And another one which is quite dodgy, but still cool

~MavvyMyBeauty 09-11-2007 05:22 PM

Thanks!! I think it's more luck than talent! :lol:

The second one's cool!

NorCal Rescue Rescue 09-13-2007 09:34 PM

I've taken literally thousands of pictures for our rescue over the last 5 years or so, and pretty much the only pointers I can give (since you're already taking great pictures) is:

Stay below the horses back with your lens. If the lens is above the back, it somehow doesn't look good.

For standing picures, the only ones that look good are the ones that have the ears up.

Stay as close to the center of the body for side shots as you can. If you are more behind the horse, the rump will look too big and the head too small. Of course you can accentuated the chest if you shoot from about 10:00. (A bit from the front, slightly off center.)

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