Sunday, July 11, 2010

Proud moments

Sometimes you just know things are working - and working correctly. Whether it is something you write, a photo you take, or the accomplishments of your students.

This week-end I had the pleasure of that experience. Zara and her horse Ajiba performed exceptionally well in every class they entered at the 2010 ACAH horse show. Their success is the culmination of all they have learned from several coaches over the years and I happen to be the fortunate one who is putting the 'icing on the cake' so to speak in refining their skills.

So, how do people commemorate those moments? For many it is a photograph - perhaps one of the presentation of a trophy, such as the one above. For others, the joy is in capturing the action as it happens that results in the awarding of prizes.

The hand gallop that speaks to strength, fitness, obedience and pride.

The lengthened stride that demonstrates longitudinal flexibility and strength.

What ever it is, those moments are fleeting and to be enjoyed again and again in an image that truly captures the memory.

As photographers, that is what we do.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Shooting Children

I know. After a few days of heat and humidity such as have been experienced across Canada this week, it might be tempting - but I'm talking about shooting them with a camera. Aside from any technical advice, the most important thing when doing a photo shoot that involves children, especially a lot of them, is to relax and have fun. If you are relaxed, they will relax - and it'll show in your final images.

Personally I prefer to do family shoots (such as these 9 grandchildren) in an outdoor setting. Although I'd have preferred a dawn or dusk setting for better light, organizing 9 kids at that time of day is pretty much impossible. So, we did the best we could given the somewhat harsh mid-afternoon lighting.

The grandparents have a lovely summer home on a lake so the kids gathered there for the experience. At first they were tense and the cheesy grins were pasted on faces. But after a little while, they began to get into the spirit of the event and had fun. We all climbed the rock pile, sat in the dirt, played on the playset and generally had a good time - while taking photos.

So, if family portraits are something you want to do - work on your people skills with the kids, first. Everything else will fall in place. Just remember to relax and have fun - then the kids will too.