to spend the day in Bromont, Quebec, witnessing my very first Carriage Driving Event. It was a sweltering day – over 30 degrees C and yet the horses and drivers didn’t even blink. I, on the other hand was rather wilted-looking by noon.
Most professional and amateur photographers find that horse shows provide a wonderful opportunity for some cool shots, but as I discovered, carriage is a whole ‘nother take on ‘opportunity’.
First, there are virtually NO spectators. It’s not an Olympic sport. As a photographer, it was wonderful to not have to ‘shoot around’ anyone – because there is nobody there. As in, only 20 cars in the spectator parking lot!
The entire course is made available to… well anyone who shows up. There are no restrictions, not even to the barn and paddock areas. You can stand directly in front of a competitor charging right at you for some great head-on shots, and no rope or steward forbids it. Just move quick before the horse gets to you! It is a competition after all.
And lastly, the competitors are incredibly relaxed and friendly. As they passed by making their way to the next obstacle, they were always ready with a smile or a friendly word or joke. It was almost surreal.
I went to this event for 2 reasons: one, I had never shot a carriage competition before and I always love to try new photography challenges, and two, a friend of mine (not pictured) was competing. Hard to believe I had never seen her show before, but then again, this is a niche sport and most of her competitions have been in the United States. Well, she garnered the top of the top class – the CC2*. She ‘took home the gold’.
What a thrill. My friend came home with a gigantic red ribbon and a big smile, and I came home with a lot of photos, a sunburn and a happy heart.
Here are just three of the photos.
My only decision now, is which one do I print to hang over my mantlepiece?
Most of my photos (including these) are available for purchase at https://ordinaryripple.smugmug.com/Over-the-mantelpiece/Ranch-Art-Photography/
A slide show below shows these and many others. If you love horses, these prints bring something a little special into a room.
Till next year… or the World’s Competition in 2018!