Monthly Archives: December 2011

Five Star Tack Advert

I finally got a copy of the Five Star Tack advertisement displaying one of my photos. This photo was taken at Red Hills Horse Trials in March of this year, and its use by a major equestrian company was a big deal to me. Below the photo is the blog entry I had started about it but not published because I wanted to include the picture. It’s a good laugh.

“There comes the rare occasion that I like to do a silly obnoxious happy dance. This is one of those moments! Five Star Tack contacted me about using an image of mine for an ad. I was very honored, but having finally seen the image in print, I can hardly contain my excitement! I logged onto the Chronicle of the Horse forums, and there was my photo in a real legitimate advertisement! This is Doug Payne and Running Order on cross-country at Red Hills in the CIC3* division. I was lucky to interview Doug…”

(It stopped there, but I did interview Doug at Red Hills regarding the USEA Cardiovascular Study.  That interview was published in the April issue of Eventing USA.  In my excitement, I said the ad was seen in print, but then described seeing it online.  Eh, I was too happy to notice the difference.)

This image has been added to my Published Images gallery on Smugmug.  Click the link to see more.


Hastening Patriot – New Photos/Video

This past weekend, Patriot participated in a clinic with Sonya Crampton.

He was a star.

It was bitter cold,  but Patriot warmed up loose and quiet.

He was very relaxed and unfazed by the activity around him.

The lesson began with trotting and cantering over poles set on a bending line.

Patriot was balanced and well-behaved.  He kept a nice bend over the poles, and he knew right where his feet were at all times during the exercise.

When the group began jumping a course consisting of challenging rollbacks, changes of direction, and bending lines, Patriot excelled.

He remained quiet, tidy, and happy to do the job.

Patriot has an intelligent eye, and he is a quick study.  He jumps, hunts, and always scores well on the flat.  He would do well with a young rider or confident amateur, and he could go very far with the right rider.

Click here to see more photos and a video of Patriot on this site.

Contact Kate at for more information about this talented horse.

Sale Video – Hastening Patriot

Good photos are paramount when it comes to selling horses.  These days, since many horses for sale are found online, potential buyers also want to see videos before making appointments and travel plans to see a horse in person.

In the fading evening light, I filmed Hastening Patriot, a spunky, athletic Welsh Cob/Thoroughbred.  His tack didn’t quite fit, and the footing was deep, but still his manners were impeccable, and his heart full of try.

Click this link to see Hastening Patriot’s advertisement on Sport Horse Nation, or contact Kate Shields at


I arrived home from my very first USEA Annual Meeting & Convention in Nashville, TN at 3:30 this morning. Despite the long hours and hard work, I had such fun! It was extremely educational from the viewpoints of both a member of the USEA and as staff.

I had a camera in my hands for most of the week, but this snap of Josh and Scott is quite possibly my absolute favorite.

If you didn’t make it to convention this year, I do hope you will consider coming to Colorado Springs next year.  As you can see, it’s a good time! Go to the US Eventing website and the USEA Blog to see our coverage for the week and watch for more in the January/February issue of Eventing USA.

Stella Luna’s Spotlight

Good photographs that show off not only the athletic talent and skill of a horse but also its personality and spirit make all the difference when attracting potential buyers.  My fab friend Zeb Fry, of Little Kentucky Farm, met me at Poplar Place Farm for a photo shoot of her new sale horse, Stella Luna.

Stella is a five-year-old (at the time of this post, anyway. She foaled in 2006) Thoroughbred/Trakehner mare and I LOVE HER!!!


I had already heard wonderful things about Stella, but this photo shoot was the first time I’d met her in the flesh. Zeb and I lamented that maybe she should just keep Stella for herself. If only we could keep all the horses we love!

Stella was a wonderful subject.  From the time she stepped off the trailer, she was cool and collected.  She was curious, but calm.


I think she really loved the attention.  She was patient while we constantly readjusted her for the right conformation shot and hurried to catch the moment while the sun peeked from behind the clouds.  She posed like a star.  Stella loved the camera, and the camera loved Stella.


Stella consistently impressed Zeb and I with her level-headed attitude.  We walked out to the cross-country course, which was Stella’s first time seeing the sights on a course.  Again, she was curious, and she looked, but she never spooked, bolted, or otherwise mis-behaved.

We headed straight for the large water complex, and Stella’s eyes widened at the giant wooden fish at the crest of the hill above the complex.  That is what she is looking at in the photo above.  Giggling, I walked over to the fish and patted it on the back, then leaned against it.  Satisfied that this was not a pony-eating fish fence, Stella visibly relaxed and moved on.

Stella was always mindful of where she put her feet, but she willingly trotted into the complex and made a few rounds trotting and cantering in each direction.

One of the awesome Poplar Place maintenance men, Dennis, drove by on the tractor and waved hello.  Stella, as you can see, stood quietly while we chatted.  We moved significantly closer to the tractor than shown in the photo below.  Zeb and I were both so impressed with Stella’s good behavior.  We were falling more in love with her every minute!

After the encounter with the tractor, we headed back to the arena by the barn to do some flat work.

Stella has lovely natural movement, but she also benefited well from walk breaks.  With each rest, she went back to willing, happy work, and we caught brilliant moment after brilliant moment.

We did not do any jumping on this particular day, although having multiple photos of a sale horse in each phase of eventing would be ideal.  Since this photo shoot, Stella’s flat work has improved, and she has proven herself to be a natural jumper.  I have a soft spot for chestnut mares, and Stella stole my heart.

Find out more about lovely Stella at the Little Kentucky Farm website.  If you are also in the business of buying and selling horses, consider contacting myself or another professional equine photographer in your area to schedule a photo shoot of one or more sales horses.   Purchasing adequate images is significantly more affordable than paying for another few months of the farrier and feed.  Check out my photography website here.  I can be contacted at

Farewell, Joey

Yesterday, we said good-bye to our beloved dog, Joey.

We had many wonderful, happy years with him, and he gave us so much love.

Despite his failing health, his spirit never faultered.