I’m so glad I took advantage of the opportunity to attend the first Equine Photographers Retreat in Florida in early March, right before the world turned upside down! I was able to visit my daughter and her husband for a few days and visit with my darling new granddaughter, Ivy!
I flew home on March 9th, which is a time we were aware the virus was out there but there was no quarantine yet or any panic.
But back to the retreat, I’m sure we’ve had more than enough conversations about the pandemic!
It was a full three days at a mansion near the horse capital of Wellington, Florida. I had never been there and it was a great location and the weather was lovely! Each attendee chose the courses they wanted to take with an array of well-known instructors.
I had a variety of classes from black backgrounds, social media, posing the horse and rider, high school seniors, and finding your creativity.
I got to learn from the amazing April Visel, Giana Terranova, Shelley Paulson, and many more! I also got to chat a little bit with equine photographers from around the country and the world! My first connection was with an amazing photographer and Gypsy Vanner breeder from Australia, Rachel Flynn. We arrived a day early and explored West Palm Beach a little bit.
On one of the evenings we drove almost two hours away to Fort Pierce, a lovely beach on the Florida coast. We were met there by a pretty Andalusian mare, Rhapsody. She was a bit unsure and hadn’t really been to the beach before. The model was Morgan Moore, a stunning Arabian horse breeder and very skilled horsewoman. She had never met the mare before and she did a great job. There were a couple mishaps and Morgan hurt her hand when the mare took off, as well as a fall or two in the water, but she was such a trooper and hung in there until the end.
You can’t tell from the pictures, but there were around 20 photographers all grouped together shooting at the same time! That takes a bit of getting used to, the hardest part is not being able to connect with or direct the model. I was still excited for the chance to photograph a horse in the ocean, and got some great shots!
I was hoping to attend a workshop with April in Solvang, California, in the fall but I’m not sure if that will be happening or not.
I am truly excited to recreate this look in the northern California ocean or northern Nevada lakes!