Photographing running horses is something we do on many of my workshops. In fact, this year we'll be doing just that on the following workshops:
Spearfish, South Dakota;
South West Photo Caravan;
Oregon Coast Photo Caravan.
As a prelude to my workshops, on which we also have a ton of fun, I thought I'd share some tips for photographing running horses. If you come to Provence, you'll have the opportunity to make pictures like the first two images in this post. Thank you Patrice for sharing.
1 - When photographing groups of horses, try to get as much separation as possible between the horses.
2 - Set you camera to the fastest frame rate to capture the action. A split second can make the difference between a good shot and a great shot. Set the goal of getting a shot of a horse with all the hooves off the ground. To do that, you'll need to take a lot of pictures.
3 - If the horse is running across the frame, leave some room in front of the horse into which the horse can run. If you frame too tight, the horse will get stuck in the frame.
4 - When the sun is in your frame at sunrise and sunset, check your histogram and highlight alert warming on your camera. Try not to overexpose the area around the sun.
5 - Use the focus-tracking AF system in your camera - AI servo in Canon cameras. Make sure the focus point stays on your subject.
6 - When framing your picture, leave some extra space around the subject so you don't cut off part of the tail, ear or hoof.
7 - Use a shutter speed of at least 1/000th of a second to freeze the action, but try slow shutter speeds, too. I used a shutter speed of 1/30th of a second to blur the action the photograph below.
8 - Try panning, as illustrated below. You need to get lucky or take lots of shots to get a good pan. Try different shutter speeds, from 1/60th to 1/ 15th of a sec.
9 - Note the position of the horse's legs in your photograph. You want the legs in a position that says "action."
10 - Have fun. Don't get so focusing on getting great shots that you miss the fun of photographing the action.
Here's another tip: Join one of my workshops. I'll show you how to make great images, including action panos like the one below.
If you can't make a workshop, or if you want to learn about light and composition before the workshops, check out my Kelby Training classes on light and composition.
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Explore the light,
This post sponsored by x-rite. X-Rite is the global leader in color science and technology. The Company develops, manufactures, markets and supports innovative color solutions through measurement systems, software, color standards and services.
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