{this is a line from my all-time favorite movie from my childhood: SPACEBALLS} and not advice you should actually follow for your equestrian session with priddysweet. 😉

So then, how DO you prepare? We talk in detail about styling and share ideas for your session long before it is executed. {That is part of the service that priddysweet provides to all clients}. But sometimes we get so wrapped up in what we’re doing for you (the human part of this equation) that we neglect to discuss how to prepare your equine friend.

1) Scout out places on your farm ahead of time. this will stream-line the process and minimize the extra excitement for your horse. Although most horses don’t have a problem touring the farm (the camera and lights don’t add too much in the way of shock for them either after the first 5 minutes), the less time spent on this “disruption of schedule” to your horse, the happier he will be.

2) Bathe, clip and groom horse ahead of time. Your portraits will be on your wall much longer than the time you’d be showing for a judge in the ring. So, pretend you’re preparing for a big show and start early. Doing your clipping days before to reduce the excitement to your horse the day of your session. Keep everything as calm and cool as you can. The goal is to capture your relationship with your horse on a “normal” day. Reducing the level of excitement and fuss on the day of your session helps us stay closer to that goal.

3) Choose a nice, simple halter and lead that won’t distract attention from you and your horse in the images. Leather works very well for this. Be especially mindful of your lead. If you do not have a leather lead, choose a dark and non-distracting color. Better yet, see if a friend has one you can borrow. :) You will also want your bridle cleaned, polished and conditioned. Many sessions use only the bridle in images.

4) Gather items for last minute touch ups: fly spray, hoof black, show sheen, mane and tail brush and a partially damp towel for a final body wipe-down. It is also helpful to have an assistant (in addition to our assistant) to help you get dressed, hold and position your horse and help fend off other curious equine friends (if we’re in a shared field). So grab a friend– the more the merrier!

5) Prepare to RELAX and take it easy. Sometimes (more like often times!) things don’t go exactly as planned. It is no secret that horses are not always predictable– and as horse-people we know that it takes patience, flexibility and creativity to mold them and capture them in the best possible ways. The ability to take a deep breath and let it go is a major goal for these types of sessions. Your horse senses your tension and stress and acts accordingly. Don’t worry– we will get the perfect shots. If it takes 2 rounds, we will get them. So relax and have fun… that’s what this is all about! 😉

To learn more about an equestrian session with priddysweet, click HERE.

Have a good one!

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An avid equestrian and true lover of art, Elizabeth merges her love of the horse, beauty and human relationship into her images.

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