When Someone is Going Through a Storm by Michigan Equine and Horse Photographer Laura Adams of Laura Adams Photographic Art
When someone is going through a storm, your silent presence is more powerful than a million empty words. ~Thema Davis
We’ve been fortunate enough this year to have had only one real snow storm here in southern Michigan so far this winter (if you are one of the few who love that kind of weather – sorry – I can’t stand the stuff!), and I made it a point to go out in it and shoot. As much as I hate the cold and snow, I will admit that it IS beautiful while it’s falling, and there is nothing quite so pretty as horses, covered in snow, with snow flakes tangling in manes and tails as they drop from the sky. It can be downright magical. So, I force myself to go out in it, often using the beasts in my own pasture as my models and muses. Every equine in my own barn is sooo over being photographed that my biggest challenge is keeping them out of my face and far enough away that I can actually photograph them appropriately (well, that and getting to get the shots I want, while staying warm, and doing it all in as little time as possible…)
Happy new year to all of you, and may 2016 hold magical moments!
A pony weathers a winter snow storm in southern Michigan. By Michigan equine and horse photographer Laura Adams of Laura Adams Photographic Art.
©All rights reserved, http://www.LauraAdamsPhotographicArt.com, 2015. This image is protected by US copyright laws. Images on this blog may NOT be duplicated, saved, captured, screen captured, scanned, printed, right-click saved, modified, altered, used, displayed, entered into competitions, shared on the Internet, shared with third parties, used on web sites, used in publications (whether in print or via the Internet), or otherwise obtained or used WITHOUT the express written permission from the artist and creator, Laura Adams. Licensing of images for many of these purposes are available through Laura Adams with a contract and for a fee. Any intent to circumvent the artist’s revenue through use, display, and/or print will result in legal ramifications and violates US Copyright Law. Contact Laura@LauraAdamsPhotographicArt.com for purchase, use, and further details.
Ahhh, it’s that time again. Time when we can go outside in just a t-shirt and enjoy warm breezes, blowing manes, and the sweet scent of carrot breath. It’s also the busiest time of year for me as an equine photographer. This is when everyone wants sessions of and with their horses – the ponies have (finally!) shed their wooly winter coats in favor of a slick, glossy ones, owners keep them groomed to perfection since it’s also show season, and we can move around without contending with layers of clothing and feet of snow. It also brings our local, county, and state fairs, which mean opportunities to shoot horses engaged in things I don’t normally get to enjoy.
These images were taken during a driving class. I initially went to take images a friend’s Percherons who were in classes with these Belgians and other draft breeds, and I had a lot of fun admiring the athleticism of these gentle draft giants. It’s easy for me to feel like a 17 hand saddle horse is big, since I’m around 14-16 hand horses all of the time, but these horses were well into 18 hands and taller – WOW! That just seems huge, and forget about standing next to one, they definitely made me look tiny. I don’t mind large horses, but I think I’d have to build a walk-way system in my barn just for general grooming and handling if the draft bug ever bit me!
As my calendar fills up during the summer with horse sessions, family photos, and graduation pictures for Class of 2015 high school seniors, I try to remind myself to schedule some time off to just do what I love for the sake of exposing my skills and mind to new environments. Fairs, horse shows, and clinics are the perfect place to do that, so I’m fitting in as many as possible!
Enjoy the rest of our spring, friends…
Stepping out of your comfort zone is a great thing.
This past weekend, I had an opportunity to do just that. I have some clients (turned friends) who are pretty involved in the world of roping. I’m a life-long horse lover and owner, but outside of a few rodeos, I’ve never been exposed to this discipline. Most of my work has an equine fine art/portraiture theme, and it seems that I’m usually so busy doing that kind of work that I rarely have the opportunity to get out and push myself into exploring other avenues. So, when my friends contacted me and asked if I’d be interested in shooting their upcoming clinic, I thought at the least it would be a fantastic opportunity to explore a different type of shooting than what I normally do (I’m also pretty sure that there was the promise of newborn foals on the property that may or may not have been used as photographer bait…)
There were 14 participants in the clinic to work with Blair Burk, a 14 time NFR qualifier, who came all the way to Michigan from Oklahoma. I caught some of their practice outside, and then they moved to the indoor arena for some hands-on work. Shooting fast action shots in an indoor arena can be quite a challenge, as the lighting is notoriously less-than-ideal, but after a few test shots I found a happy place that my camera, lens, and the available light could play well together with. Knowing next to nothing about roping, I paid attention to what seemed to be the highlights of each run, got familiar with the lighting, and then saw where the magic in that arena was happening at. We had some daylight streaming in from the perimeter of the arena, which gave us some backlight in virtually every direction, and then some overhead tungsten spotlights which put off very selective pools of yellow light. All of that light, combined with the dust being stirred up by horses, people, and calves – made for what I think are some fantastic shots of the clinic participants doing what they love.
I had arrived thinking I’d shoot for an hour or two, but wound up staying until well into the evening. I was having so much fun experimenting and working in my zone that time literally slipped away from me (always a good thing when work doesn’t seem like work and the time flies by!). I’ve spent the past three days working 16 hour days to sort through all of those images, pick the best of them, and edit them in my post-production process to get them prepped for viewing. You can see the entire gallery of images here: http://lauraadamsphoto.zenfolio.com/p1023210276
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