Good light will help anything look good. This shot was done at sunset with a model running back and forth in front of me. I took lots of shots. I was a little late to the party so by the time she got sweaty enough to look like she was really working out, the sun had gone down and the idiot photographer (me) left his flash in the car. No fill light. So it was in silhouette shot. . . ahhhh!
So know when the sunrise or sunset will happen. If you can afford it I HIGHLY advise hiring a model and try some setup shots. You need to plan this and know what your trying to get. It is also fun to pick out bright cloths for her/him and dress her/him for specific concepts you might have. Stock agencies love simple concept shots with room for copy. You need a model and sometimes a location release if the location is recognizable. The release MUST be exchanged with money or something tangible to really be legit. Don’t take advantage…. be fair.
For a long time I was in charge of my four ~carpet commandos~ children. There was always some problem… some sad song like; “Dad !!! Geoff put ketchup in my ear” At some point I changed my name to the Cheerio Roundup King. At some point I visualized a concept I call “I have heard all the sad songs”. I saw the image in my head and started putting pieces on the board. I hired an old friend (I have quite a few old friends) bought an old violin, shredded the hair on the bow and found a tux at a used clothing store. Black background, strobe with a grid, signed model release, some acting direction for my friend and the check to pay for his day. I learned a lot.
For a decade now I have listened to photographers and their stories about slipping shoulder straps. Cameras and lenses bouncing off the floor, falling off into the bay, in short driving them nuts. About 98% of photographers who use the UPstrap love it. I am happy I can help.
This photo technique is called dragging the shutter. It intentionally blurs the image giving it a feel of motion. Panning the camera while dragging or slowing the shutter speed also has the benefit of blurring the background. This brings the focus of attention to the foreground – in this case the horse and rider. If you want to get real fancy, dragging the shutter and panning while blowing a flash with either front or rear curtain can really be a bunch of fun. HOWEVER, shooting a flash at a horse can cause a serious amount of trouble and a seriously pissed off rider if the horse is not “flash friendly” and comes totally unglued. In the right situation even the sight of a camera will freak a horse. A thoroughbred (with blinders) at the finish of and after a race is usually acclimated to a flash. It is part of their training. Besides the horse is usually so exhausted you could hit him with a brick and not have him freak.
Lastly. . . .punchy colors like RED help.