Dressage training

The last post about Reppe Riding school activities are about the internal dressage training event.

The Dutch Frieser Lars van de Zuiderwaard in action

I got there a bit late so I didn’t get photos of everyone, but as always it was fun to watch riders and horses in action. The pace was much slower, so I had better time to select good vantage points for photos.

Lars van de Zuiderwaard and his rider in action….

The rest of the photos are found at my Flickr account

I hope that next time, I’ll something else than horse photography to write about…

Getting that shot

After the spring jumping competition, the girls at the local riding school found out that I could take quite nice photos. And apparently there is no limit to how many photos of themselves and their horses they can have, so we agreed to meet in the field on a sunny day to take some photos and have some fun.

Now, as any observant viewer may notice, the girls are riding without helmets and saddles. This was to get better photos, and I had not thought through the risks involved in riding like this.

Fortunately, the horses behaved properly…

Of course, I could say to myself that this was not my problem. In fact, I think I did… However, I also think that as photographers (amateurs and professionals alike) we have a responsibility to not encourage people into taking unneccessary risks just to get better photos, nor allow them to push themselves. And I know that I would never have forgiven myself for taking those photos if one of them had been hurt during the shoot.

On the other hand, I am not sure that I totally understand the real risks involved. Just as with the photos of Sigrid, I have seen a lot of photos taken where the riders are without helmet in far more risky circumstances than the soft field we were using… At least I have learned to review the risks next time so that I (and the subjects) don’t take unconscious risks.

We also found the time for some non-action shots. I noticed that one of the girls had the name of her horse tattooed on her neck, and it made for a striking image together with the horse.

And to see the connection that these girls had with their horses was touching….

And of course the mandatory portrait(s)…

Event photography

It’s been a long time since I posted anything (until the last couple of days that is). I have been busy travelling (without my camera unfortunately) and taking photos at the local riding school. Over the next couple of posts I’ll outline some of my recent photography experiences…

The first event was the yearly spring jumping event. The event is based around volunteer work, and my contribution is photography (since I am better at this than say, baking or cooking). I took photos at last years event as well, but this year I felt confident enough to post my blog address around the event to attract readers. And it worked…. Over the event days I got almost 30.000 pageviews of my photos, quite a lot compared to the 20-50 I usually get per day.

Based on last years experience I prepared by thinking ahead where I should place myself to get the most out of the fences.

Finding the spot

A lot of considerations had to go into this, such as the position of the sun, the background, distance to other fences and much more. And of course everything changes for each class, so I had to study the course diagram to position myself correctly for each class.

After a few riders, I was getting warmed up and had found a few favorite spots that gave me good coverage

Of course, the event wouldn’t work without volunteers, and they did an awesome job of keeping the course organised and in shape

Even though it was the beginning of May, it still got quite cold to stand there all day…

All in all, I took about 3000 photos that weekend, of which aobut 400 survived the editing process


One of the girls at the local riding school approached me some time ago to ask me if I could take some photos of her and her favorite horse. She is also a budding amateur photographer and I can see her improving almost from week to week. Therefore we agreed to meet at the riding school and take some photos. She even brought her father along to help me hold reflectors, flashes and the like.

We started of with some horseback photos:

By moving around on the fields, we found several nice places to grab photos.

After the fields, it was time for some other portraits.

Knowing the school well, she also had some great locations in the stable for photos

This shows that knowledge of the location is just as important as technical photography skills…


A loooong time ago, I wrote about my visit to the Kristiansand Zoo. I promised to write more about the visit behind the scenes, and here goes.

We got to visit the Siberian tigers in their cages where they spend their nights (well not into the actual cages, but at least inside the caretakers rooms. The tigers are part of a preservation project, where the tigers are mated according to strict plans to make sure the long-term health and survival of the tigers. There are about 350-400 tigers in the wild, and a few hundred in captivity.

A siberian female tiger

When I posted these to my Flickr account I thought that was the best tiger photo, since the cage was not visible. A friend of mine however felt quite strongly that another of the photos were much better, since it captured the captivity better….


And looking through them both, I found that I agree. The second photo is more moody and captures the tiger in captivity far better… It just shows that the first impressions are not always the right ones, and that different interpretations leads to new ways of viewing…

To round it off I managed to capture a common squirrel monkey (most known in Norway for being the monkey of Pippi Longstocking. The monkey is a known thief and steals wallets, cameras and other goods from the tourists. We were warned to keep our pockets thoroughly closed 🙂

A master thief
A master thief