I meet in person with all my clients in advance of their equine photography sessions. During that meeting, I always ask clients if they have any questions about their upcoming horse photoshoot. And almost without fail, I get the question, “What if my horse doesn’t behave during his photoshoot?”
What if my Horse Doesn’t Behave During his Photoshoot?
If you think that over the last several years every horse that I have photographed has behaved perfectly then I’ve got some beachfront property in Kansas I want to sell you. Ha!
Horses are animals with personalities and moods just like people. Everyone has bad days, off days, grumpy moods, and playful moods.
But, in all the years that I have been photographing animals, there has only been one time that we have actually had to reschedule a photography session due to the horse’s behavior.
What if my horse won’t stand still while on his lead?
Let me ask you a question, if I told you that I need you to stand around and look really pretty with a smile on your face for an hour without moving, could you do it? Probably not. You’d fidget. You’d think about snacks. You’d wonder what your friends are doing… So why expect your horse to do that?
Some horses are perfectly fine with standing around. Others want to move and get some energy out. Both are perfectly acceptable. And both types are able to get beautiful images out of their photoshoots.
Always remember that your horse is a horse. Not a model. Asking him to stand near his buddies and not chat with them, or to stand in a field filled with snack-friendly grass and not help himself is a pretty big ask.
During our consultation, we will take the time to figure out how to make a session work for your horse’s personality. And, on the day of the session, we will make adjustments to our plan for his mood of the day.
I purposefully schedule one session per day so that I have plenty of time to work with each horse.
I also suggest a light lunge earlier in the day, not scheduling anything stressful, such as a vet or farrier visit, and keeping your horse on as much of his regular schedule as possible on the day of his photography session.
I can never let my horse off-lead for a horse photoshoot!
It might surprise you to know that most of the horses’ I photograph aren’t off lead.
Some who are running in fields are but even a lot of them are on lunge lines or lead lines. Safety always comes first during a horse photoshoot and I am deeply concerned about the safety of the horse, the equestrian, myself, and any assistants, and helpers.
Horses are 1000 pound animals with minds of their own. I’d rather be safe than sorry so more often than not, horses are secured…even when it doesn’t look like it in the final images.
Got more Questions?
If you have more questions about horse photoshoots, make sure to check out our other blog posts including:
Ready to Schedule your Horse Photoshoot?
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