Being an equine photographer is quite strange to a lot of people. They tend to wonder and ask the question, how can you just focus on horses? Or, how easy is it to take shots of horses, especially when in their natural habitat?
Why horses? Because they are fascinating and beautiful animals and I have a certain attraction to them that I can’t begin to explain. On the easy part, it is not so easy. As a matter of fact, it can be a bit difficult, mostly because when they are on the move you can’t just say to them “hey, I want to take a shot so stay still.”
I guess you have been wondering how you are going to pull off taking pictures of horses as a beginner equine photographer. Else, why would you be reading this article? I feel your pain and I want to share some of my experience with you. In the next few paragraphs, I’d be sharing how I take cool pictures of horses and I am certain it will be helpful to you.
Knowing your subject and the shoot venue
To take pictures of horses you need to visit a reserve, horses don’t walk around the streets the way we humans do. Before the day of your shoot, it is advised to make findings of the reserve you want to visit and the horses present there. Find out about their daily routine, the intensity of the sun in the reserve, whether there is a shade from the sun, the species of the horses, and whatever information will be helpful. You should also find out the weather forecast for that day so you don’t get surprised. Find out if there is a hide as well.
Create a makeshift hide
Sometimes there is no hide at the reserve and you need this to get close enough to your subjects. You definitely have to improvise by creating a temporary hide. On a few occasions I have used my car as a hide, it could be really convenient. Horses aren’t really afraid of the hides, they will only get shy and move away when you make rapid movements. You can shoot from your car window or get a perfect distraction for the horses and then shoot your pictures.
Don’t make the mistake of going for this sort of shoot with just enough. It is always best to go with extra, especially batteries and memory cards. Ensure you have enough backup. After all, why go through all the stress to end up getting stranded?
It is advisable to take your pictures in raw format. The reason for this is that the pictures are more flexible to be edited which is very important for wildlife photography generally. Ensure you carry out all the necessary adjustments to your images before putting them out. Look out for properties like color, white balance, saturation, curves, etc.
Focus more on the eyes
When taking pictures of wildlife, which includes equine species, you should focus on the eyes. Every other thing can get blurred, but not the eyes. It is better they are nice and sharp.
I believe this guide has been helpful to your quest for knowledge on how to take pictures of horses as an equine photographer. Try them out and thank us at Emma Ziff later.