Adding your horse(s) to your session is AMAZING, but does add an extra layer of complexity. Now not only are you getting yourself ready (clothes, hair, makeup, oh my!), but now your BFF 4-legged friend needs to be prepped. I am here to tell you its not that bad, you can do it, don't let yourself become overwhelmed because your horse can sense that. Here are a few quick tips and steps to help your equestrian session go great!
5 Quick Tips for Prepping Your Horse
If you would like to give your horse a bath prior to the session, I recommend doing this the morning of if you have an afternoon session or the night before, similar to what you do at a show. This gives them time to dry off and mentally move on from the bath.
Like the bath, I recommend having any hair styling you would like done on your horse well in advance of the session so you are not stressing about it last minute. Similar to at a show, it is a great idea to slip a slinky on (or whatever you use) after you are done to keep everything looking nice :).
If you are in show season, your clipping is likely already done, but if you do choose to do some clipping consider doing this a week prior to the session, just in case there are any accidental nicks. Of course clipping is optional, show off your and your horse's unique style!
4. Last minute grooming
So your horse is bathed, clipped and styled. We are coming up on your session time! Use a soft finishing brush to smooth out the hair, a soft cloth to wipe dust and clean the face. Keep it simple and keep them looking great!
It is a great idea to burn off some extra energy just prior to the session. It is not uncommon for horses to get a bit antsy during the session (which is totally ok), but taking the time to burn off some extra energy, just like you would prior to a show to warm them up is a great idea.
Bring A Friend
It can be super helpful (but totally not necessary) to have an equine savvy friend around to help you out during your session, weather it be to just hold your finishing cloth to keep your horse's coat looking great, to help set a leg, hold your horse while we focus on you for a moment, it can be priceless just to have an extra hand. But don't fear, I have many years of experience with horses and am also here to help you out.
Consider a Bridal vs. Halter
Now some of this is personal preference, but for on the ground portraits styled with your horse, I usually prefer a bridal vs. a halter. But don't just take my word for it, try both on your horse and decide which you think flatters their features more!
Leave your Stress at Home
Also don't stress! Your session will be a blast and we will get awesome portraits, even if everything doesn't go 100% as planned. You got this!
Are you ready to book an equestrian session of your own? I would love to hear from you! Check out the details on my horse specific page and drop me a line, we can work on setting a date and time for your session.