I find horses to be very majestic. They are strong but at the same time they often seem easily scared which can make them somewhat unpredictable at times. I often used to go horse riding during the summer when I was a teenager. My parents sent me on holiday for 2 to 3 weeks every August - probably for their own sake. But I loved it. I was always hoping to get the craziest horse possible. And I always did. I would get the ones that would just suddenly hear other horses and, without announcement whatsoever, would charge towards them at what seemed like a hundred miles an hour.
One year I got the horse who had a phobia of tractors and cars generally. But when you go horse riding in the countryside in the south of France you are bound to see tractors a few times a day. That particular one was a French horse, which means she was very tall and strong, and she used to do races. Every time she saw a tractor - way before me - she would spin frantically forever, almost losing her balance before shooting in the opposite direction at full blown speed! By that time I knew I just had to hold on really tight and hope for the best because trying to stop her would make her angry and more distressed. Yes I know you do have to show that you are the master with horses, but sometimes you have to give in and then take control again later.
The problem is that we had to walk past these tractors. The drivers would stop their engine noticing the distressed situation but it would take a while and a lot trying on my part to get past those tractors. She would eventually storm past them with a look of horror on her face and gallop for at least 200 yards until I managed to take control again - or until she felt safe really!
But it was a lot of fun. I had heard so many stories about accidents involving horses that I would just hang on there and never let go of the reins. I never fell off a horse - some people say you never get really good at horse riding until you badly fall off at least once?!
I started pet photography a few months ago but unfortunately I don't have a pet on my own to photograph [sad face].
So instead I decided to go to a nearby park called Ermelunden just south of Dyrehaven. There is also a little pond and lake there. It's just great for a nice walk but on top of that there are horses too. They are great to photograph because they don't listen to a word of what you're asking them to do. [Yes, I talked to them]. So you have to improvise and work around their personality. Just like you would with dogs and cats sometimes. It's a great exercise.
For the photos above I used a 18mm wide angle lens which means that I had to be very close to the horses. Closer than you think. That's what created this weird look where their head looks huge compared to their body. Often, when photographing pets you have to be rolling on the floor to capture fun and unusual angles. But be careful when photographing horses. The ground is usually full of... [you know what] ;)
I would love to be able to paint. And I love watching someone paint. There is something that I find so relaxing and fulfilling watching a painting being created and taking shape; watching how a few paintbrush strokes can quickly add meaning to a canvas. Photography and painting are so different when you think about it. With painting you start with a blank canvas, while with photography your canvas has already information on it. But in the end, both the painter and the photographer decide what elements go onto their medium. The latter does it by voluntarily choosing the subject, the angle to photograph it, and by moving around the subject.