Sarah, Silver & Jeffrey, Bentley

Last year I ran a competition to win a photoshoot, and the lucky winner was Sarah with her two handsome boys, Silver & Jeffrey. Just down the road from me, Sarah’s livery is on a gorgeous apple orchard – one I used to ride around as a child! It was wonderful to be able to come back, and provided a perfect backdrop.

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Silvern Crown is 21 years young, and has been with Sarah since he was just four years old. He has stunning bloodlines, of an old English line – the Crabbet Arabians – and was bred by the Duchess of Rutland of Belvoir Castle. He certainly holds an air of royalty about him!

Silver used to be out and about with Sarah on the showing circuit, and would often see his brothers. They were also no strangers to a bit of dressage, competing up to Medium together, and even winning a one day event! It sounds like he has turned his hoof to a bit of everything – if only he didn’t keep eating his bridles (6 at the last count, Sarah??!)

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Nowadays the boys keep Sarah sane; having two young children, the yard is a bit of a retreat!

Jeffrey is a totally different character altogether, and boy does he know he’s handsome. He joined the family 7 years ago, and is now in his prime aged 11. Once he’d had a quick check of my camera, he soon figured out the game, and forward popped the ears. With a very posh name like Rushton Bali Prince you’d be forgiven for thinking that he too is of royal descent. Sadly we don’t know as much about his heritage so it will remain today’s mystery! All I can tell you is that, like Rio, he has an awfully girly neigh!

Sarah and Jeffrey have been out together doing cross country and showjumping in the past, which is something that hopefully they can get back to soon, and Sarah tells me she has learnt a lot from him. In turn, she has become a much braver rider, and they’re a great team together, when he’s not trying to eat people’s fingers.

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I had a great time meeting you all, and look forward to seeing you get back out and about soon Sarah! Thank you for having me!

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Togs in Tidmarsh

Raspberry and I took a day trip to Tidmarsh last month, where we caught up with fellow equine photographers Rose Lewis, Katie Mortimore and Louise Groom. You can tell it’s going to be a good day when the only delay on the M25 is a mere 15 minutes and still moving at 30mph!

Rose had kindly offered to arrange a client and location for us to all meet at for an afternoon of photographing and exchanging ideas. Unfortunately our original model Ed had an accident and was rushed into the vets – I hope he’s on the mend now Michelle! Luckily Becky and Holly came to the rescue with Breeze and Gypsy, and we caught up with them after a spot of lunch ready for some shoot time.

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It was so interesting seeing how the other ladies worked on shoot, and a fantastic opportunity for me to improve on your photoshoot experience and make my job even better moving forward! I’m very lucky to have found a group of photographers who enjoy sharing knowledge, and helping one another out, which can be very tough when there’s so much competition out there. It’s also great fun when there are other photographers to catch you in action – Goofy decided this was a great time to come over and join in with the advice-giving. Thanks to Katie for this goofy image of me!

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The best thing about the day was learning, and despite there being four photographers in the same location, shooting the same subjects, it’s been great to see the different results. It’s also this difference in final images that prompts me to encourage you all to choose the right photographer for you! My clients choose me for the images I produce, in my style – that’s not to say that you will all want images that look like this, and that’s OK! Life would be pretty boring if everyone liked the same things. If in doubt, pop me a message, have a chat, and we can take it from there.

It was also the perfect excuse to test out my wonderful new bit of kit, and get to grips with my camera mount to allow me to record your photoshoot experiences. You can see the footage below:

 

Sorry ladies – you’re all in front of the camera this time! I even got some snaps of Katie, Rose and Louise making friends with everyone on site too.

The brainstorming hasn’t ended here though, we still keep in touch regularly and support one another, and I’m so pleased to have an amazing group of people I can turn to for help, advice and a good old natter! It’s all about the collaboration, not the competition – we are each our own USP, and I love it!

Raspberry and Dollsberry even posed for their own photograph at the end of the day – before deciding that posing was far too much like hard work!

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Sharon & Archie, Battisford

Last month I visited a friend at her new yard in Battisford, with her horse Archie.

Previously a flat racer, this chestnut thoroughbred has bags of character, and has certainly set Sharon some challenges over the years. Like many of us, Sharon has experienced some confidence lows, particularly after a nasty fall, and some rather excitable antics on Archie’s part since. They have done a wonderful job of building their relationship from the ground back up again, and it was fantastic to see their bond is stronger than ever.

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Archie is a very loving horse, often whinnying hello as Sharon arrives on the yard, and more often than not he’s very happy to stand for cuddles and scratches. He soon realised what we were up to on the photoshoot, and the ears popped forward, which made my job much easier!

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Having walked down the road to get some shots on a local farm track, we had a heart stopping moment after Archie reared up and caught his lead rope with his leg. In what seemed like ultra slow motion off he went towards home, and very luckily made it in one piece. I hope he’s OK now Sharon and has gotten over his little moment!

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We kept within the yard boundary for the last few images, and caught a little of the sunset which was beautiful to see. Thank you so much for letting me come and catch up with you and your handsome boy Sharon, I hope you love your images!

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