Archive for Equestrian Photography


As many of you know, we are still some what new to TN, and being horse people we want to reach out and get involved with other horse people.  And after working with the MD High School Rodeo Association before moving to TN, I was anxious to do some more rodeo work, and thru some searching found the Lil’ Wrangler Jr. Rodeo, run by Laura Wallace.

I contacted Laura and offered to help where I can.  Then when we finally got into town, she invited us over to one of their meetings were I learned a lot more about the organization, what they’re doing and why.  Basically, it started years ago to provide free rodeo activities for kids that couldn’t afford to do the normal rodeo activities that were not free.  So this is a really cool thing that she’s doing, and it has grown quiet a bit over the years.  And with the new season starting in  a couple of weeks, the first rodeo event is also their fundraising event, which helps to pay for all the equipment and trophies and more.  The fundraiser will be at the White County Fairgrounds on April 25.  If you want to see the full details on this event, then check out this post from their Facebook page:

I will also be at the fundraiser as well, putting my skills to work taking some pictures and video for them to utilize.  But I will also be donating 5 photo sessions with an 11×14 mounted print for them to sell as part of their fundraising.  Whatever they sell for is what goes towards the organization.  I’m donating my time and some material cost from these five sessions to hopefully help these kids have what they need to go on in their rodeo experiences.  If you’re interested, then I’m hoping to either have a table or share a table where I can also have some sample images there to see.

As you’ve noticed, one of the cool things I was able to do for them was an interview with Laura herself.  This was totally on a whim, completely unscripted, and so not perfect.  I loved doing this and look forward to tons more interviews with others in the future.  This one did go longer than expected, but it was full of great info and so I just couldn’t cut anything out.  This is the full video as it was captured in one take.

I love a good rodeo, and it’s a great reason to get the family out for a day, while at the same time helping provide funds for kids.  So if you can, then please go out and join them for the fundraising event and show your support.



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Post by  at Brandon Malone Photography



After much delay I have finally wrapped up my video project for Corey Jackson Horsemanship.  This was a VERY involved project, but I loved every bit of it.  Corey is actually the one that helped me realize my new focus on equine owners for my photography business since I stopped doing events last year.  I still have a lot to learn ahead of me about doing pictures with horses, but working with Corey was important to me.

As someone that provides services to others I can relate with Corey.  When you watch this video, you will hear his passion for both the horse and the owner and realize that that passion is first and foremost.  We both believe in being there for our clients and their best interests more than we care about making them a client.  We are there to help, and Corey expresses that very well.

Amanda asked me recently if videos is still something I want to add to my services after all I went thru with Corey’s project.  It’s true that I did spent weeks of time and fought my way thru some mistakes that I couldn’t resolve, but the biggest part of my job is to help others tell their stories and I love being able to add video to my work to help do that.  I have some great photos of Corey both with his own horse and working at clinics, and they all tell a story about him.  But the video captures so much more, giving a different type of emotion and depth.  Not that either medium is deeper emotionally than the other, but they’re different in how they speak to the viewer.

Videos cannot replace photography.  You’ll never hang a video on your wall as a permanent display.  It’s not something that you’ll randomly stop and stare at as you pass it by from time to time, letting your heart be touched by the memories it recalls for you as you would with a printed display.  Videos are keepsakes though, kept safe on a shelf with other videos or on a computer, ready for you whenever you want to see again the moving expressions and the changing tones in their voice as they are alive again in that moment.  It is for this reason that I think video is the perfect complement to photography.  Videos speak but come to an end, and photos are silent but are always there for you.

So what are my plans with video?  I want to continue doing videos for professionals, whether in the equine industry or other areas such as real estate.  I also want to continue getting clips from photo sessions, but I also want to get more personal messages from my portrait subjects as well.  I’m sure I’ll come up with different ideas as time goes on and I get more hands-on with it.  Everyone has a story to tell, including you who’s reading this post right now.


cowboy and horse


walking a horse


cattle herding


lunging a horse


walking a horse





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Post by  at Brandon Malone Photography

As many of you know, a focus on equine photography portraits is new for me.  I have been married with horses for over 11 years now, and have taken a number of photos here and there of them in a non-portrait scenario.  You’d think I’d have this new focus of mine in the bag.  I know a number of basic things to watch for and what not, but I realized a few extra tools and tricks I need to put up my sleeve for when doing portraits of people and their horses.

Probably the first thing I realized I needed to keep on hand is a step stool of some kind.  I tend to envision many photos in which people are sitting or standing next to their equine partners, but it’s obviously more natural to be sitting on a horse since that’s what we do with them.  We don’t just walk them like big dogs.  We ride them to accomplish great things with them as a team.

The ears are the easiest thing for me to focus on.  Happy and attentive ears point forward, making for a much more engaging and eye pleasing.  The problem is that you can’t always ask a horse to put their ears forward on command for you.  Sometimes they straight out agitated, sometimes their flopping around like Eeyore, and sometimes their all over the place fully distracted by their environment.  It is still a challenge for me since you never know how a horse will react to the tricks you try.  Generally I find it best to base your attempts first off of the excitement level of the horse combined with whatever the owner can tell you about what scares them.  Then test your waters carefully.  Nothing is worth getting the horse or owner injured just to make the ears go forward.

Probably the most complicated challenge is a high energy horse, or one that’s simply impatient or excited.  Some horses are calm and carefree, but the rest will keep you on your toes as their constantly move everywhere, making you nervous for the owner, your staff, and your equipment.  There are some things that everyone can do to help reduce these things.  One is to have the owner work the horse really good the day before hand so that they’re hopefully tired when it comes time for the session.  Another thing you can do is put the horse in the environment WAY before the session so they can get used to it, making it less exciting.  Owners that know their horses will know how to calm their horse.  Of course I was joking with Amanda recently that we should start keeping calming paste on hand just in case.

Creating portraits of owners with their equine partners is very rewarding, but it is also very challenging.  Just remember not to rush or push the situation too far and to keep everyone safe so that you can end on a good note.

woman riding horse in woods



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Post by  at Brandon Malone Photography