If you want some top tips for horsey pics you are in the right place. Lucy Rose talks us through her favourite tips for taking fabulous horse photography.
Lucy is an amazing photographer based in Cheshire and at just 16 years old, she already has a fabulous portfolio. She has taken photos for Riding Club camps, as well as for her local Pony Club. She also works for a photographer attending BSJA shows and has also experience of equine product photography. Having ridden since she was 5 years old, Lucy started photography with the family camera, taking photos whilst her sister, Anna was riding. Just under two years ago she discovered how much she loved taking photos of the ponies and dogs.
"I saved up for a camera and the rest is history!" says Lucy "It’s opened up some amazing opportunities"
Tip #1 - Keep the sun behind you
With summer on its way, and with the sun making more of an appearance, try to remember to take your photo with the sun behind you. This easy fix will ensure the subject is well lit and shadows don't darken your photo.
Tip #2 - Try different angles
Try experimenting with different angles to create a different perspective. There are various different camera angles you can play with to get a different look.
Here’s a few you can try:
1. The High Angle – take the photo from slightly above, this gives the subject the appearance of being smaller. This can also add to the cuteness factor too! Experiment with different heights, depending on what you are looking to achieve with your photo.
Want to look good in your selfies? According to research taking your photo using a slightly higher angle, from above your face makes you look slimmer and younger. Yaasss! We are all over this tip!
2. The Face to Face – direct and eye level is really personal and establishes a real connection with the subject.
3. The Low Angle – this is good for the larger subject, such as our equine friends. You will need to crouch down low or take the pic from the ground to get below your subject (stay safe at all times though) and you’ll get some really impressive pics. You can also have some fun with this angle, result of which can range from goofy to epic!
Tip #3 - Using a plain background
Try to pick a plain background, if your background is cluttered then it will distract from the subject of the photo. Black or white backgrounds are super effective for stunning looks you’ll see the professionals produce, but at home choose a plain wall or picturesque field as a background. Using an unremarkable background means you can compose your shot so that it doesn't distract or detract from the subject.
Remember to watch out for those photo-bombers though, which can occur by accident or even on purpose!
Tip #4 - Keep it steady!
Keep your phone or camera steady and this will reduce the chance of your image being blurry. You can rest your phone or camera on something stable, a fence works well or you can imitate a tripod but resting your elbows on your knees.
Tip #5 - Get some attention!
There's lots of ways you can encourage your horse to prick up his ears. Here are just a few ways: rattle a bucket, scrunch up a plastic/paper bag, or play a video with a horse neighing (there is even an app for this!). It is the surprise factor that will get your horse to prick their eyes so if the crisp packet isn’t working, chances are waving it around for ten minutes won’t help. Try to get his attention with something novel and interesting.
Tip #6 - Lights, Camera, Action!
When taking action shots, such as that enviable jumping shot mid-flight - try out the ‘Burst mode’ on your phone or camera. It will take a number of pictures and you can choose the shot you like the most and discard the others. Or why not create a collage of the take-off through to the landing. Remember to use some of our previous tips, keep it steady and make sure the sun is behind you.
Tip #7 - Focus on the eye
If the eye is in focus, it brings the photo to life!
Tip #8 - Rule of Thirds
You may have heard of the ‘Rule of Thirds’ this is really good advice to follow even for beginner photographers. Imagine that your image is divided into 9 equal segments by 2 vertical and 2 horizontal lines. The rule of thirds says that you should position the most important elements in your scene along these lines, or at the points where they meet.
Tip #9 - Frame it!
The world is full of objects which make perfect natural frames, such as trees, archways and holes. By placing these around the edge of the composition you help to isolate the main subject from the outside world. The result is a more focused image which draws your eye naturally to the main point of interest.
Tip #10 - Be creative
Experiment with as many different angles or combine angles to get new and interesting photos. The great thing about having a digital camera or using your smartphone means you can take as many photos as you like and then can choose your favourites later on and discard the rest. You can also check you have the shot you want before you end your photoshoot. Don't forget there are so many great photo editing apps and software available, ranging from freebies through to Adobe Photoshop. Adding filters, cropping and adjusting balance of light and contrast can be done with the tap of a screen so be as creative as you like and at whatever stage you are at in your photography journey, enjoy and keep learning.