Linda Top Photography Tips

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Creekside's Photo of the Week!

Click here for Linda's top 10 Photo Tips!


May 2013

Honored again to have photos that placed in the worldwide, highly popular Equine Photography Network.

5th place- performance horse/amateur division

Honorable mention- extreme action/amateur division

Honorable mention- performance horse/amateur division


Enjoy a few courtesy photos from nearby Curly breeders!




Sitting Pretty



 IF you like horses, and IF you like photography, we have something in common. I have created this "Photo of the Week" feature for my website to share and inspire. I take lots and lots of horse pictures, I will share the best of the best here, in addition to my regular sales/ranch photos on my website. I am self taught, with a lot of help from some really great books and a great mentor and friends who like horse photography also.


"looking at the exceptionally tall wheat this year, an idea struck me...and it turned out even better than I had planned. Darryl and Princess swim in a sea of wheat for this photo. Camera setting were AV f/8.0 ,  shutter speed 1/400  ,  ISO 200. I shot this on "program mode", and let the camera choose the proper settings"

2010 Photo Contest Awards!

Nez Perce County Fair
1st place  + Best of Class win for my silhouette shot of Nicole !  This photo also earned me a $25.00 prize in the local newspaper contest
1st place + Best of Class win for Hattie and Darryl ...This photo also earned me a $10.00 prize in the local newspaper contest

Curly SportHorse International
1st place- head study
Curly SportHorse International
2nd place Liberty
Curly SportHorse International
1st place-Horses and Humans
Curly SportHorse International
1st place place - performance
Curly SportHorse International
1st place- head study
Curly SportHorse International
1st place- Humor
Curly SportHorse International
1st place Liberty


2009 ABC Photo Contest Awards!

WOW....WOW......WOW !!!!   The judges and viewers BOTH picked "First Love"  the number one photo!!!  Special thanks to Darryl and Packer for helping make this moment a timeless treasure.

Judged photos

1st place - foals- C-C High Sox Tyler
1 st place - human interest - First Love

Viewers choice photos

1st place- action- HeartBreaker
1st place- foals- C-C High Sox Tyler
1st place- human interest- First Love

1st place- head shot- C-C Hells Canyon Packer


Linda's Photographs - Featured in National & Overseas Magazines

  Linda's Photo    
Horse Illustrated - Breed Profile - December 2009 Issue


  Linda's Photo  

Western Horse UK - Breed Profile Section

September/October 2009 issue


Online Featured Photo Albums

Rocky Mountain Rider - Kids & Horses, December 2009

This photo was awarded "Photo of the Month" with Rocky Mountain Rider Magazine!


What makes a great photo?"  from National Geographic

1. Does the photo stop time?
2, Is the photo new? never seen before?
3. is a good photo in the stucture?
4. It is unbelievable?  are you left wondering how the photographer managed to capture this shot?
5. Expression...does the expression say it all?
6. there emotion?
7. the elements of the photo, time, place all make sense?
8. Wonder,  is there wonder and empathy of the subject/subjects? 

All these things contribute into making that "one of a kind" outstanding photo....


All these photos were taken with a Cannon EOS Rebel ( 300D ) if possible I will include info about the conditions when the photo was taken.

*** Linda's 2009 Photo Competitions***

2009 Lewiston Tribune Snapshoot contest

Honorable mention

2009 Curly Sporthorse International Equine Photo contest

BEST OF SHOW & 1st place (Mares & Foals)

1st place (Horses at Liberty)

2nd place (Curly horses catagory)

2nd place (Humor)


Equine Ideal: Spring 2009 Photography Contest

Linda received an Honorable Mention out of hundreds of photos submitted worldwide!


*** Linda's 2008 Photo Competitions***

I entered 5 photography contests in 2008
and was honored to receive placings and wins in every contest I entered.

Equine Photographers Network contest

Running Free, 6th place

Emmy and the boys, Honorable mention.

Curly SportHorse International contest

(I just listed my 1st through 3rd placing here. Check out more of my photos at

Brother and Sister, 1st place

Curly Stallion, 1st place

Best Friends, 2nd place

Emmy and the boys, 2nd place

American Bashkir Curly Registry contest

Still waiting on results, this info to be updated soon!

Nez Perce County Fair

Moon over Hells Canyon, 1st place - Sweepstakes Winner

Princess itch, 2nd place

Running Free, 2nd place

Lewiston Tribune Newspaper Pet Photo contest

Most unusual pet picture..... Sage and Marissa, 1st place



You are invited to join the Equine Photography Group!


Linda's Top Ten Photography Tips

In my interest and my promotion of the Bashkir Curly horse, our hypoallergenic curly sport horses, and our Curly Deluxe Trail horses, I recognized there was a REAL need to stunning photography. So, new camera in hand, I set my goal on producing stunning photography of these horses that would do them justice. From my hypoallergenic curly sport horses,  to our Curly Deluxe Trail horses,  I set my sites high, and have produced many award winning pictures...I compete in several annual photo contest, some images of horses, other contests, just general photography.

The following slide shows are of photos I have taken over the years of my horses. The first is "Award Photos" which is my collection of photos won by entering contests that accepted both digital and 35mm photos. The second slide show is of my personal favorites. I hope you enjoy them too! As you will see, most of my photos are of my beloved horses, the Bashkir Curly horse. In addition all of the photos on this website, be it my hypoallergenic curly sport horse,  or our  Curly Deluxe Trail horse,  foals  or general pictures have been taken by me.

Read my article on Top tips, and you can be a great photographer too!
These are tips for still photography, though I am sure most of this applies to doing video also.

Over the last year I have made an intense effort to advance my photography skills. Through online classes ( a great way to work at your own speed ) to regular old book learning, and reviewing articles on the web.  I wanted to take this opportunity to update my top 10 tips, with some new info and photo examples to enjoy.

1). KNOW your you want conformation shots? candid shots? action shots? when you head out with your camera, think about your goal here, it will make a big difference.  We frequently shoot action first, then when the horse is settled down a bit, do the conformation shots. Often getting your horse to stand quietly for conformation shots, can be tough, if he has lots of energy to burn. For SALE photos a movement shot, a head shot and a conformation shot are the basics....Young horses can be shown in hand , at liberty or with humans....riding horses already started under saddle should be ALWAYS shown under saddle, in one or more pics. IF your horse has a purpose ( other than the common curly, who is shown eating )  SHOW IT OFF !!! Taking the time to do a few candid shots of your own horse can be VERY rewarding...pick late winter to best photograph curls,  summer to get a sleek/crushed velvet look.

2). KNOW your target audience.....are you a breeder or wanting to sell a horse, or just wanting nice photos of your horse to show off to friends? Difference disciplines require different horses should be standing square for conformation shots,  sport horses should be standing with all four legs seen. KNOW what your audience and what they consider"normal" for that disipline, otherwise your photo will not get any attention. Here is an example of a shot of a dressage horse...everything in this photo says "dressage."


3). MAKE a plan....what kind of shots are we doing today?  is there proper lighting? too much sun? cloudy days are best, early morning ( and I mean early ----5 am in the summer ) light is VERY good, and so is evening light. Professionals often start outside shots  right as dawn is breaking.  If you shoot in the afternoon, and there is very bright sun, put your horse in the shade, it also may trigger your flash, but that is OK. This trick really does work!  ALSO, lots of books on photography composition out there, check your library if you don't want to buy. Surf the internet and see what pics you like, try and copy the composition of the shot.

Photo taken in the Morning Photo taken in the Evening

4). KNOW your equipment.....what will your camera do?  Can you do lots of zooming? Try different angles, most of my pics are shot from low, either me lying on the ground, or sitting down on the ground. ESPECIALLY true for good foal pics. If you do lots of zooming, remember to leave enough extra space to crop your photo to 2400 X 3000 pixs. This size will give you an 8 X 10 photo. You are much safer to leave a little extra, than take the chance of not being able to print out the whole pic, should you get something spectacular!

Kallie & Sage were above me. Shot from a low angle, sitting on the ground.

5). CLEAN your horse/horse/nicely dress your human subjects....this makes a HUGE amount of impact for a good photo. Most photo shoots around here are about 2-3 hours...we CLEAN our horse, trim what is appropriate for our goal, and then go at it. Once you get your horse(s) clean and dry, dress your human in a color that matches, or at the least, does not distract....( use the basics folks use to match saddle blankets to their horse ).  My high school gal helper usually calls me right before the shoot, to see what she should bring to wear.


6).  WATCH your background.....nothing worse than getting that GREAT shot, with a horrible background. Look before you shoot, many times, you don't notice things until the shot is done. If possible MOVE stuff out of the way, also trim up the weeds, make things tidy, your shots will show it.  Sometimes a messy background is good. Horse show crowds....things that should be in horse pics are OK, but most photos simply look best without a messy background. background.... Look for eye appealing contrast, a light colored horse photographs best on dark or green background, a dark horse, on green or light colored background. You can avoid a lot of distracting backgrounds if you MOVE your feet...something that is lurking when you stand in one spot, may be completely invisible if you take a step or two to one side or the other. As I look back over some of my older photos..I wonder WHY did I not see that and MOVE my feet..;-)

7).  CANDID shots are favorites for many people. Keep the camera rolling, to see what kind of candids you can get. Keep your camera going long after the action are a few pics that I got as a result of keeping the camera on, and my eyes open!   Also,  especially in candids...go for the unusual. I originally tried to do the book shot with 3 foals..but the other 2 wandered off and Hattie was left to investigate what Darryl was doing..the result? of my all time favorite shots!


8).  PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE,  with todays digital, you can shoot over and over again, learn what looks good, and how to shoot it.  LEARN to pan, your horse will be in focus, and the background will be blurred, you can pan with any camera. practice and learn what is right. Since I read "how" to do horse headshots in my favorite book of all time...Charles Mann - "Photographing and Videoing Horses Explained" I learned that horse heads should be shot with either both eyes visible...or the hint of the other eye ( sometimes just the eyebrow/eyelash ) I found that the profiles I sometimes see now, just stiff and un real to me...both eyes ( or part of both eyes ) makes the personality in the horse come alive. Here is one example of the "hint of both eyes

9).   Wait. Patience pays off...esp with horses...wait for the ears...eventually they will come forward...wait for the right look. I waited a long time for Legacy to step into the right spot, when I was doing shots of my herd by the pond....along all time favorite shot!   The position of her ears actually add to this, because her and her sire both are known for their loose ears..that oozes confidence in many situations.

10).  ONLY put really nice shots out for folks to see,  life is unpredictable, and you never know when you might need to part with your lifelong friend.  If folks have already seen shot after shot of outstanding pics, that horse may be easier to place....think about it ! only choose the photos with a NICE expression. Airplane ears, closed eyes, etc. make your horse look less than interesting.

In a world of millions of horses/farms/ads...a stunning, eye catching photo of your horse can greatly help you to a successful horse business or simply an award winning portrait of your equine best friend!




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