Equine photographer

A Horse Photographer Q & A……..

I’m regularly contacted by students and other photographers asking various questions about being a Horse Photographer. So I thought it might be a good idea to put up a post answering some of the more usual questions I get asked, and of course, I’m happy to answer anything else if it helps.

How did you find your niche in equine photography? I’ve always had horses in my life, and it just seemed a natural progression to want to photograph them and to show, just how stunning these creatures can look.

What equipment would you bring to a standard photoshoot? I’m not quite sure what could be considered a standard photoshoot, because everyone is different, but I always have at least two camera bodies, spare batteries, cards and a range of lenses depending on the shoot, and without doubt, my most used lens is an 85mm prime.

Ambient or flash lighting? Two very different genres that can create unique styles used on their own, but I generally mix the two, which makes a shoot a little more complicated, however I feel it can give my images the extra ‘edge’. My lighting equipment is all from Profoto, it’s tough, durable and very consistent.

What post production do you use? Very little. After a shoot the best images are selected, and then the RAW files are processed using Capture One Pro. I use C1  because I think it handles the files better than any other software I’ve used. If I have to retouch, then I’ll use Serif’s Affinity Photo on the final image.

Who were your inspirations, favourite photographers? I don’t recall being inspired by anyone in particular, maybe subconsciously , but no one I could recall. I think initially, it was because I was more of a frustrated artist than a photographer, it was just that I couldn’t paint or draw! The answer for me was to simply use a camera to make the images I had imagined.

What brand of camera equipment do you use? In my opinion this really is the wrong question, as it doesn’t matter what so ever. If you look at the professional bodies by any of the top brands, they all have very similar features, there’s little in it. However if you feel it does matter, I use Nikon mirrorless, with lenses ranging from 24mm to 400mm, all F2.8 or faster. Don’t get hung up on kit, it’s your vision that matters most and then you can acquire the kit you need to make that vision happen.

How did you build up your business when you started? Once I’d got my website up, it was simply through word of mouth.

What social media do you use and how important is it to you? I do have Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts, but anyone who follows me will know I don’t post very regularly. For me, its not a very important part of my business, and just a bit of fun.

What would you say is the one thing that makes you stand out from other equine photographers? There aren’t many other horse photographers using large portable studio set ups like me, and I also believe, that having been around horses all my life has helped give me a better understanding of them and the ability to capture images that reflect that.

What one bit of advice would you offer anyone starting up as a Photographer? Shoot what you love, the rest will follow.

Cameras sitting on the polo field sidelines, before the game starts.
Another day at the office…..
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