From Beijing to Biasini: My Photography Journey.

I started to take an interest in photography back in 1980 on a three week trip to China with a group of horticulturalists. That was back in the days of film. It came in handy little cannisters and you had to load it into your camera. On that trip to China I mastered the art of changing the film in the camera while walking. No time to stop and fiddle around with changing film. But fast forward to the age of digital .

In 2015 I had media accreditation for the Pan American Games in Toronto, when I was writing for a British horse website. I had a Canon Rebel camera and two lenses: 28-50 and 50-250. I took lots of photos and some of them were ok . In 2016 I started my own blog website Horseaddict. I was primarily taking photos of horses in competition and they are moving all the time. I knew I needed to take better photos. So I enrolled in an online course offered by the Equine Photography Network. When I took the course there were six weekly lessons focusing on various aspects of photographing horses. How to focus, meter, set shutter speed etc. When you had taken the photos for a session you submitted them to the instructor for critiques and assistance with improving your shots. I used Biasini as the subject of many of the photos. The shot below was for the assignment of spot metering using a doorway or other dark background. I was amazed with how well it turned out.

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We also were assigned action shots. For this I got the pony Penelope to be my subject.

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Another assignment was a horse in silhouette. This is my coach Belinda Trussell on her horse Tattoo.

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In 2018 I got media accreditation for the World Equestrian Games in Tryon NC. For this I got a bigger long lens a 250-600mm and a monopod as the lens is quite heavy. By now I also had a second camera body another Canon Rebel. I knew as accredited media I would be at the ringside but that does not mean close to the horses and riders. The media center had easy access to the arena. I liked to stand at the railing behind the 3 judges booths, at the end of the arena. You can see them in the photo below. I could move back and forth to get the horse and rider in various parts of the test. I was familiar with the Grand Prix tests and so I knew when the good movements like the extended trots and half passes were coming up. I also took an online course in editing in Adobe Lightroom.

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Here is my coach Belinda Trussell competing at the WEG, for the Canadian Team, on her horse Tattoo.

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Here is Isabell Werth and Bella Rose. With the help of my EPNet course I had learned the precise timing of when to click for a good canter shot.

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For the medal ceremony the entire media contingent assembled at the side of the arena just below the stadium seating.

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We were all there to photograph the Gold, Silver, and Bronze medal winning teams.

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Since then I have had media accreditation for the Winter Equestrian Festival and the Adequan Global Dressage Festival, in Wellington Florida during the winter. I was there last winter, before the Pandemic shut down the shows, photographing and interviewing Canadian riders who were competing for qualification for the Tokyo Olympics. Here is a photo of Canadian Megan Lane.

This is another Canadian rider, Naima Moriera Laliberte.

I hope that once the Pandemic is over I will be back to these competitions taking more photos of horses and riders. Thank you to Amy for this weeks Lens-Artists Photo Challenge “My Photography Journey”. This has been an interesting trip down memory lane for me. My final photo is of me taken at the AGDF in 2018 by fellow photog Queca Franco.

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50 Comments Add yours

  1. da-AL says:

    these are all truly awesome & clearly inspired by your passion for your subject matter. am especially amazed that you captured horse on only 1 foot!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      I also have some photos of horses at the canter when they have no hooves on the ground. Tha canter is a 3 beat gait and there is a moment of being airborne. Thanks for commenting πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  2. There are just amazing, from the action shot… the silhouette shot… AND the perfect canter shot, This was a laid back and satisfying experience.

    I enjoyed reading and looking through them. Even going back to look at the natural sheen of the horse under the sun. πŸ‘ŒπŸ½

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you I’m so glad you enjoyed the photos.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re most welcome πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Marsha says:

    What an interesting photographic journey, Anne. This was a great challenge because we can all learn about each other. You have had some very specific training, which would make sense considering your interest. Thank you for sharing. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      You are most welcome Marsha. It was a very interesting challenge.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Marsha says:

        I agree. What a great way to find out the levels of experience of your community to better meet their needs photographically.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. No wonder your photos are wonderful 🐎☺️ You always have the perfect subject 🐴 πŸ₯°
    What a journey! πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      I do have subjects that I respect and have an understanding of. Horses deserve to be photographed well. Thanks for commenting. πŸ™‚

      Like

  5. I really enjoyed reading about your background! I once had an Equine Photography business, and it was a lot of fun. Rodeos was the most profitable to photograph, and then there was the occasional ranch photo session, and some clinics. I loved it, but I no longer move in those circles. Maybe that is why I Loe your blog so much? I can still enjoy beautiful horses through your writing and photographs πŸ™‚

    Liked by 3 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Wow! Photographing a rodeo would be pretty amazing. I did not know you had this in your past. I am glad I can bring you some.horsey things into.your life now.

      Liked by 2 people

        1. anne leueen says:

          I left a comment on your rodeo post. WOW! That is the polar opposite of dressage. I emailed the link to our barn manager. He has a son who says he wants to be a bull rider. Oh boy……!

          Liked by 2 people

          1. It sure is the opposite of dressage, intriguing in a different way. Thank you πŸ™‚

            Liked by 2 people

  6. dprastka says:

    What a wonderful post to learn about your photography journey! Such beautiful photos you’ve shared. ❀️ One of my favorite photos there is you behind the camera!!

    This all brings back such wonderful memories as my dad was a huge photographer and I got that love from him. I took a photography class back in the day where we developed our own black and white photos!! My dad had a Canon with many lenses including a long 200mm. He let me take it to many horse shows I attended. So fun too use, and I learned a lot. The memories of all those rolls of film needing developed to see if any of the photos were any good! Always hoping for a few good shots!

    I’m so impressed, your photos are BEAUTIFUL!! πŸ’–

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you for sharing some of your photography history. I’m glad you enjoyed seeing my photos too.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Anne, you are quite the photographer! Lessons really do pay off. The one of Biasini is fabulous! I hope you have that printed and framed on your wall!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      I am tempted to go back to the original and take out the metal chain from the lead shank. I now know how to do that with Lightroom and it might improve the photo. But thank you I also love that photo.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Tina Schell says:

    Wow Anne, VERY impressive!! We never really think about the differences between various kinds of photography but my mediocre results of shooting my granddaughter while riding is a great example of my lack of skills in this area! I love how diligently you’ve worked to become the amazing photographer you are, and especially how your wonderful Biasini photos show so much of his personality and your bond with him. Great that you get to be so close to the action in major events, and that they trust you to handle such an important role. Enjoyed your post very much.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thanks so much Tina. Photographing horses is a special skill and I had to learn it. I also know that with Covid and not being in FL this year my skills will be a bit rusty and I will need to brush up again when it comes to the summer .There are some shows scheduled here in Ontario and I hope they will still go ahead.

      Like

  9. You sure went a long way, and you always capture the right moment. Shame on me, I wasn’t aware of the fact that it took you so much time and dedication to get there. I’ll appreciate your wonderful pictures even more from now on, I promise.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you Viola. I’m glad to know you like the photos.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. cigarman501 says:

    You have a great eye!!!! Especially for a subject, you love.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Yes! Thank you for commenting!

      Like

  11. You’ve got some awesome photos that show what you ought to think about when taking photos. Horses are such elegant and royal animals.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. David says:

    I have a rather large archive of equestrian photos, primarily Deborah and Elizabeth, dating back to preparing for their very first show. The first half of the archive is in 35mm film, the second half to recent is mostly digital. I would characterize much of the photowork as their training material, from practice session close-ups to when Trish would be talking with Deborah and Elizabeth (together and separately). Getting good photos is about being in the right place, at the right time.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Yes, right place right time and with dressage horses the click has to be at the right time too!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Irene says:

    A very impressive journey, Anne. 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you Irene!

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Leya says:

    Oh, Anne, you are so good at this! Pure joy seeing your riders, winners, horses. The Labierte shots are so alive – the last one especially. And the very last one – of you – is telling how much you love this. Its not only photography, but your subjects are also loved by you. Biasini against black background – superb.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you so much Ann Christine. I appreciate this comment from you !

      Like

  15. This was nice to read. You are so very talented.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      I’m not really that talented. I just work hard at learning things.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah…learning new things is a talent too.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. anne leueen says:

          Yes I guess it is. πŸ™‚

          Liked by 1 person

  16. Frances McDonnell says:

    I’ve always wondered about the path you had taken to arrive at the β€œaccreditation” stage. Persistence for sure. Well done.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you Frances.

      Like

  17. Rupali says:

    Your journey is quite impressive Anne.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. JohnRH says:

    Wonderful journey, such beautiful horses!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      They are not easy to photograph but the effort is well worth it. Thanks for commenting.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. I enjoyed reading this post.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Amy says:

    Enjoy reading your journey, Anne. These photos are truely beautiful. I love the horse image with the dark background. The action capture must be challenging. The photo of Canadian Megan Lane is a great shot. The last image shows much of your passion for photography. Thank you for sharing. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      You are most welcome and thank you for this challenge!

      Liked by 1 person

  21. This was a good “journey” through your process of acquiring skills, very interesting and we can see it paying off in the photos you’ve produced.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you Robert. It is an ongoing journey

      Like

  22. Elaine says:

    I really enjoyed reading this post and the photos are fabulous. Thank you 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      You are most welcome!

      Like

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