If you were photographing horses with kids on top???

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by GeeJay, May 8, 2007.

  1. GeeJay

    GeeJay

    Jan 26, 2005
    Florida
    I"ve been asked to take pictures of a Special Equestrian event and kids will be riding the horses.

    I'd like to have your thoughts on which lens to use. It will be in the morning. I know I'll need a fast lens.

    My collection of lenses is good so probably have what you suggest. I just need to know your thoughts on this question.

    My first thought is the 70-200VR and also have thought of the 200VR but wouldn't have the range with that.

    I'm open to any ideas you have and also will appreciate any input you have. I guess this would be comparable to taking pictures at a rodeo :smile:

    Many thanks for any ideas you can offer.

    Gaye
     
  2. Zachs

    Zachs

    884
    Feb 25, 2006
    NC
    I would take the 70-200 and the 17-55 (whatever you have in the wide range). Don't use flashes as they might (probably would) spook the horses. Don't machine gun the camera either for the same reason.
     
  3. Gaye,

    Have you been told what the program is? Will these kids be riding independently or will the horses be held by a handler? How large is the ring where these horses will be?

    Zachs' suggestion, is mine as well, not knowing the answer to my questions.
     
  4. GeeJay

    GeeJay

    Jan 26, 2005
    Florida
    Herman,
    I'll find out the answers to your questions. I expect they'll be riding with a handler and probably in a ring that's not too big. I'll check all that now and get back.
    Thanks for asking,
     
  5. I think you should take your best zoom lens. They will not always be at the same distance from you and having the flexibility of zoom will be perfect. I'd treat it just like I do when I shoot dirtbikers and atv's - 70-300 is my choice for that! And if you have the VR version, even better! Another issue will be if it's inside or outside. If you can, get a couple practice shots in to figure out your best camera settings. I bet you'll do great and will have a ball!
     
  6. Is there some variable in this event that won't permit multiple lenses being used? If there isn't, I would spontaneously work the event and see what develops. I hate it when people use the word 'organic' so much, but I think an organic approach would be ideal as opposed to a previsualization approach.


    Sean
     
  7. F15Todd

    F15Todd

    Feb 1, 2005
    Tennessee
    I found the 300mm VR to work nice for the near arena stuff. I had a 70-200mm on another camera that worked nice for other shots. The one I went to was very dusty as you can guess, and not a place I would want to be doing a lot of lens changes if I only went with one camera. The background at the arena I was at was ugly, so the 200mm VR might be able to hide a lot of the unwanted stuff.

    I got this one with the 300mmVR at f/3.2
    original.

    Oh, she took second in whatever this event was called, I can't remember, but they did a lot of tight circles and large ones and hard stops, and walking the horse backwards.
     
  8. HAC_X

    HAC_X Guest

    Every time I've taken pics on horseback, its been using something in the 28-105 range, save for working on horseback, then its usually some either a disposeable, or a cheap pocket P&S.
    Some tips - if you don't know the horse, don't use a rapid burst mode or flash - some horses will spook. I've found that working range horses can take a lot more "odd things" before they spook, unlike them fancy-pants dressage horses..
    Don't walk behind a horse, and watch their ears. you don't want to get kicked in anywhere vital. (or bit for that matter). Talk to 'em, let them know you're coming up on them, horses don;t like to be surprised from their blind spot.

    Here's my wife Jeannie, on Tomahawk, up by the Spray Valley, taken with my old N60, 28-105..

    [​IMG]

    Here's Jeannie, starting to head 'em in, on Joker - cheap disposeable camera.

    [​IMG]

    This one is me, freak shot, camera got bounced in Auto mode, and got this..

    [​IMG]


    And this is us, before heading out into K country for a bit.. again cheap P&S

    [​IMG]

    Cheers
    Harold
     
  9. HAC_X

    HAC_X Guest


    You need to watch some good cutting horses at work in a competition, watching them judging the cattle, and trying to predict their moves in order to head them off is a joy. No input from the saddle either, once the rider selects what cow to work, he slacks off the reins and hangs on..

    Cheers
    Harold
     
  10. Harold is right! Don't EVER walk up from behind a horse without talking to him/her, watch their ears! If they have their ears laid back - watch out! My horse used to bite me when he had his ears laid back - some will kick the livin daylights out of ya! I usually walk up on a horse on his/her left side - like you would if you were gonna ride. Most horses don't like surprises. Arabian horses are kinda temperamental as well as some others. If you have the time, you might read up on them if the show is about a certain breed. I've been to many horse shows and trials and have loved every one of them! And yep, if you're only taking the one camera, I'd only take 1 lens.
     
  11. Hyper-Performance

    Hyper-Performance

    315
    Apr 11, 2007
    SW Ohio, USA
    Dave
    That would be "Reining" - quite spectacular to watch!



    I did some shot years ago of a group of severly handicapped (challenged) kids, the 70-200 worked great and gave me the flexibility I needed to stay out of the horses way and still catch the kids expressions.

    Good luck, have fun!
     
  12. I'd agree with the 70-200 suggestion, but I'd also carry something on the wide end. If you get a chance to get close, the big lens won't do you as much good as a W/A.
     
  13. GeeJay

    GeeJay

    Jan 26, 2005
    Florida
    THanks very much to you all. I am delighted with your responses and also your great pictures. You have helped me lots. I won't write to each individually but know I'm grateful to each one of you for your suggestions.

    I found out that it's a HUGE open ring that they'll be riding in. Each child will have three volunteers surrounding it. So I figure that means there will be four horses total in each group.

    So with such a large ring I will have to have a long lens and also a wide angle.
    My inclination is to take 3-4 lenses and two cameras. I'm still not sure about which lenses...
    They will use my pictures in a Power Point presentation for their fundraiser. So I will need many pictures.
    I think I'll be able to wander around so should be able to take a variety of pictures of volunteers and kids on horses.
    The time of day will also be an issue because if it's during high sun that's a problem here in South Florida.
    I'm still open to any ideas and thanks to you all who have helped so far,

    Gaye
     
  14. Go, have fun, and come back and share. I look forward to your results.
     
  15. F15Todd

    F15Todd

    Feb 1, 2005
    Tennessee
    Yep that was it, thanks.
     
  16. Gaye,
    Here's my $0.02
    Since you've been invited I'll assume you are going to have good access to the horses and kids. You should get the most use out of medium FL glass. 17-55 or 24-70 range. Unless you are after special effects avoid very short focal lengths as it distorts the critter too much.
    Pack the 70-200 for more formal looking portrait shots.

    All my recent horse posts (sports & birds/animal fora) were shot in this FL range.

    Good luck and show us the results.

    Don
     
  17. Zachs

    Zachs

    884
    Feb 25, 2006
    NC
    Here is another thing...If you can, go up to each horse and chat with it. Rub its nose and show it that you care a bit. That'll get it relaxed enough to trust you if you do get close.

    I had to do this to a very wild horse one day. I was shooting at 12mm and my position was directly under its head right in front of his front hooves (def to close for comfort). I first approached it at an angle as you probably don't want to come at any animal head on.

    I'm on the ground in this shot, but at 12mm you can imagine just how close I was to him.
    [​IMG]

    I loved this day! Sky was perfect :)
    [​IMG]
     
  18. Gaye,

    Since you say that this is a "huge" open ring and you may not feel entirely comfortable being around horses, I would ask the organizers that someone be with you in the ring. My feeling is that two cameras with 70-200mm VR & 17-55mm would be quite sufficient, at least that's what I would do. The type of horses used for such type of "therapeutic" activity are chosen for their calm, laid back nature. Here the emphasis would be on the child and the horse is an afterthought. This is very different from taking pictures of a dressage or show jumping competition.
     
  19. GeeJay

    GeeJay

    Jan 26, 2005
    Florida
    Thanks again to you all. The pictures and suggestions are invaluable and needed.

    Herman, I'll use the 70-200VR and either the 28-70 or 17-35 (don't have the 17-55) I'll make the main focus on the child. This all makes sense because the event is about 'the child'.....I'm hoping to get some gleeful expressions on the faces of the kids. I'll put the 1.4TC in my pocket for longer range just in case I should need that.

    Dianne suggested I use a circular polarizer and that would probably be a good idea in this hot, blazing midday Florida sun. I'll find out soon what time of day the event will be held.

    DON, your gallery is full of horse pictures and certainly enjoyed them.

    Thanks to you all. Your help is super and gives me an idea of what to expect and how to handle things. I will get into the ring with someone with me. All good ideas from you all,

    Gaye
     
  20. Now if it was me....

    I would shoot with two cameras....
    One with a 17-35 fixed on a pole that would allow the camera to be 10 - 15 feet off the ground... pointing down and into the ring. I would trigger this camera with a pocket wizard from were ever you are standing. Set the lens so you had the widest possible focal length and allow the camera to do the focus lock for you. Set it so the sun is in the camera back and keep it on "P" if you want. Have Stan there to keep track of the action in the ring and give him the trigger for the remote camera if you want. It will give him something to do and one less thing you will need to worry about. All he has to do is click the button everytime he thinks there is something in the frame.
    Next I would handhold a 70-200 and work just out of the ring. Keep your f-stop as open as possible to allow your DOF to shorten.
    At the end of the day... you will get shots that first have a really interesting angle from your (normal) stand and shoot position. But also get some tight crop images with your 70-200.

    Well that is my .02

    Have fun
     
Loading...
Similar Threads Forum Date
For the first time in 30 years, a book celebrates black women photographers General Discussion Sep 26, 2017
These Beautiful Antique Photos Were Made With Potato Starch General Discussion Nov 26, 2015
Before They Were Heroes: Sus Ito’s World War II Images General Discussion Aug 21, 2015
376 th. Bomber Group. They were just a bunch of kids General Discussion May 24, 2015
Number 1 Song on the day you were born General Discussion Mar 1, 2015