Horses/animals and cameras - training!

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I came across this video quite randomly today and thought it was worth sharing. Whilst its talking about video equipment rather than stills photography, its the same kind of items and environment to if you were, for example, setting up a more studio shot with reflectors and the like.




I think its an interesting show of how you can start to train and work with an animal (in this case a horse). It would be interesting to hear and share of your experiences and methods you've used with animals in general in getting them used to photographic gear and working around them with more than just a camera.



Of course we are just the camera operator - the video clearly shows the importance of the owner/trainer/handler of the animal also getting directly involved and working with them and being prepared to take the time to work with them. Something you might consider if going to work with a new animal and factoring in time - in this case factoring in perhaps quite a bit of time where no formal photography/video is happening, but you're just getting the animal setup and ready and used to it all.
 

Derrel

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Love the size of that white reflector! What? 4x4 meters?
 

Foques

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i've shot with several horses thus far.. none gave a crap about the lighting.
I found that they just needed to get used to me being around them, get used to the smell and we were in business.

Though, one had an attitude and, I swear, got upset when we were done with the session.
 
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That is indeed a huge reflector!

Foques - yep many animals often don't care at all. Many events for horses ban flash photography, but you can bet most horses today are used to being flashed by mobile phones, cameras and such often only moments after birth. Plus in the past when you had the really old cameras with flash powder there were still loads of photos of top horses of the day.

Certainly most get used to it, I think its always good to reinforce the proper procedures though even when you've got horses or other animals you know or you know have prior experience. I recall someone doing some basic teaching I was at and they got out their pop-up reflector. They were used to it; the horse was used to it, everyone was casual. So he didn't take that extra second to pause and flipped the thing open - horse didn't bolt or go nuts but certainly went "WOWA What the heck was that?!" Though the line between that and OMG RUN/KICKRUN is often very fine.
 

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When I was doing a Senior (High School student) shoot at the farm she rode at, we started out by exposing the horses to me, without and with my gear, and then the reflector (I didn't need flash). Once all of them were cool we proceeded with the shoot.
 

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