Emma & ‘Cow Pony’

Well, what can I say? A lovely setting, a fun owner and a mostly co-operative horse. What’s not to like? We had great fun shooting some personal equine shots at Mark Butler Dressage. Having seen some of my work, Emma got in touch and we set a date. As with many of these shoots, we had to tinker with the schedule a little, to take account of the vagaries of our spring weather!


As I work with available light for 90% of the time, quickly assessing the setup was key to ensuring we had a variety of poses and ‘looks’. Emma wanted to have fun and get some images that showed the relationship between her and a horse with whom she’s progressed through the dressage skills with leaps and bounds (or should that be trots and canters?).

Cow Pony (Ballingowen Lilly to you and me) is a stunning mare with really impressive markings. Though she has some great dressage strides, I was focused on the static shots – a blend of posed and unposed – and for that reason I just let her and Emma ‘do their thing’. This consisted greatly of Emma making a fuss and coaxing, whilst Mark shook the bucket of treats and CP just did whatever she wanted! This involved lots of pulling ears back and looking slightly grumpy.

But that’s her look and that’s cool; she’s a lovely horse and has a personality to match her stature. This is just a selection of the shots I’ve delivered to Emma and they show the fun the pair of them have. As ever, I’ve included a range of finishes and styles to give Emma lots of options for the prints she wants to make. 

My thanks to Emma and to Mark – we had great fun and I think this shows through in the resulting images.


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