Back Modifications (2)
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Beauty that rides the un winged angel

By ssc1812      
Horses are my 'escape' I dream of becoming an Equine Photographer though adding an element of fashion.

Here I have asked a close friend who is totally un aware of her beauty to pose with her horse Roo. I will add some more but thought I would bite the bullet and here goes..

Be gentle my confidence is little rocky Smile but I welcome wise words and any experience photographing horses would be well recieved.


Tags: Horses Fashion Portraits and people

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


Tars 6 United Kingdom
16 Oct 2012 10:52PM
Being a very keen horesman my self, I just love it.

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ssc1812 5 1
16 Oct 2012 11:06PM
Thank you
16 Oct 2012 11:28PM
It's a stunning photo, both beauties together
Sooty_1 8 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
17 Oct 2012 12:50AM
Just a couple of thing for me.
The picture is overexposed. The colours are washed out and the sunlit hair has lost all of its texture. It's much easier to recover slight under exposure than deal with blown highlights, like these, and you've lost the beautiful colours of the horses coat. Adding the vignette to hide it just draws more attention to it really.

Also, the composition is a little tight, and the girl's head too close to the corner, so she's disappearing into the dark. A looser crop would also show more of the horse and the context. A slightly more side-on might reveal more, but only a step to the left. Lowering her head in the frame would balance the composition, giving a diagonal between the heads of horse and rider.

It's a nice idea, though little tweaks would make it better, IMHO.

Davesumner 11 28 300 Australia
17 Oct 2012 4:00AM
Hi Sam,

The first three comments you have here are not critique and shouldn't have been posted here but Nick's points are very valid. I think you've done a great job with the pose especially as the horse is looking at the camera as well, very engaging, i think i would probably have cropped off the bottom 1/4 of this image and just had both the upper half of the girl and the horse. I'm not too sure about the vignetting though, I think being in the right light would have negated the need for it.

I think you've taken the shot in the wrong light hence the overexposure. You have bright overexposed highlights because the scene had bright sun and darker shade and your camera metered on the darker areas and tried to expose them correctly (which it has done) at the expense of overexposed highlights. Your exif data reveals that you had your metering set on multi segment which is trying to evaluate the entire scene but for this shot you should have used spot metering and metered for the brightest areas. You need to read metering and use of the exposure lock button.

Seeing as this girl posed for you I would suggest arranging another session because she truly is beautiful but I'm sure the 'do gooder' fraternity will have something to say about her not wearing a helmet but don't it will spoil the shot, just be careful.. I would choose a day with less harsh sunlight or find some shade where the sun can't shine on you, use either spot or centre weighted metering. One important thing about shots like this is to know what you want to take before you get there and setup for that, make sure your background is good and the sun can't shine through and create flare or spots in your image. Try different things until you get what you want and I'm sure you will be much happier with the results.

Hope this helps

ssc1812 5 1
17 Oct 2012 10:41AM

Thank you for your comments, and the modification.

I will take these valid points on board.

Focus_Man 8 481 631 United Kingdom
17 Oct 2012 11:19AM
Reading your desire to be an equine photographer, I wish you well, but the comments above, with which I agree (apart from the first three) give you something to aim at on the long and winding road you have set out on.

There is a lot in your favour here, a nice sharp image but IMHO with poor composition. Being in the lower third, the horse's rump has somewhat taken over the focal point which I believe should be the models head. That would be better in the junction of thirds, top right rather than stuck in the corner. To do this I would crop of the rump.

Here the overexposure of the hair is the main problem that will exist even after my suggested crop, that does need a lot of thought but the remedy is mentioned above. So if you could next time concentrate on the lady's head and the horse's also with my advice about the top RH third (If you are unsure about this google "Rule of Thirds") show the horse's coat to better effect and you will have a very nice picture.

The other way to become an equine photographer is to marry someone called "Stubbs".

NEWMANP 10 1.6k 574 United Kingdom
17 Oct 2012 1:39PM
its fundamentaly a beautiful image as is your model. the lighting is super but the use of it has im afraid taken the edge off a lovely subject.

the crops a little tight in the frame with the head pushed up into the top right and straight behind the models head, is an area of foliage which the sun is passing direclty through. the power of the sun is huge and has caused the whole area including the hair and hand to be grossly over exposed. maybe moving around to get the solid canopy of leaves may have shielded some of this effect.

back light is an amazing thing if you can get it right particularly with blonde hair but its a real challange

it used to be easier to control back light this way with film because there was a greater dynamic range to the film than you have on the sensor. one way is to expose for the brighter light and use fill flash but i suppose with horses thats a real bad idea and a reflector to push light back is unpractical too so wheras with just the model, you have a few options, here its more a question of moving the subjects to fit with the lighting.

the only bit i dont like is the black vingetting which i assume you have chosen to add.

best regards
17 Oct 2012 6:28PM
Love it!
tinabolton 14 131 United Kingdom
17 Oct 2012 7:19PM
Hi Sam I agree with Phil and Nick - although their comments go into much more depth on the technical side and I know you are easing your way in - so just take note and experiment with all you've learnt so far. It is a beautiful shot and i think the exposure has made it look a little washed out. The mods look good and I wander how much of the highlights you could recover in Lightroom? For me, being a people person I saw her hand is gripped quite tightly - is this nerves or having to hold the horse (I don't ride!) If it's the former - keep a look out for signs of tension in models as this can be a big giveaway and ask them to relax their hand - they won't be aware they are even doing it. Shoulders hunched is another one.

Well done for taking the plunge!!! - please upload some of the ones you took last week in training as there were some gorgeous ones as well as the ones you showed me on your phone!!Grin
Tora49 5 United Kingdom
18 Oct 2012 9:03PM
This is absolutely stunning! Especially love the lighting.

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