Photographing Wild Horses by Wyoming Photographer Amanda Smith.
Clamoring up the side of the small hill I was hiding behind, I mis-interpreted the sound of their hoofbeats as the wild beating of my exploding heart. This kind of adrenalin is nothing like anything I have felt before, and I have felt a lot of adrenalin while creating my works of Western Art. Fighting the urge to sit up and immediately start firing, I laid there, concentrating on quieting my breathing, slowing my heart rate and calming my “ohmylordinheavenabovetheyarealmostuponmeandisurehopeidontmissthisshot” nerves.
Louder their hoofbeats became, indicating that they were coming closer… then suddenly, nothing. It was as though someone had signaled each hoofbeat to stop at the same time. I could almost hear their breathing as I made a conscious (and God help me a good one) decision to poke my red head up from where I hid. Still just a bit off in the distance they stood. Majestic in all their uncanny glory, and just as quickly as I poked my head up, their leader began to run again.
I knew they hadn’t seen me, because they were running right towards me. Praying to the Father above I quickly requested that my cramped up and frozen with nerves fingers begin to work. And work they did. Up went my camera to my face, a little too quickly as I knocked myself in the nose. ”Ouch! I ALWAYS do that” I quietly whispered to no one in particular. Towards me they ran, mountains looming in the distance, these fabulous creatures were giving me the perfect show and I felt immediately blessed. Snappity, snap, snap! Squealing inside myself I held in my desire to scream YEAH BABY YEAH as they ran on past me, slowing down as if to perhaps examine me from the distance of my long lens, I swear that leader looked me right in the eye. Well, in the lens, anyway…. God they are gorgeous creatures. As they continued their seemingly un-interrupted travels past me, and off into whatever distance they were searching for, I sat back down in my original crouching position, and quietly ran through in my mind, the wonder that I had just captured.
And just like the song says “Wild, wild horses… couldn’t keep me away” I stayed for a while, relishing in the moment of all the beauty that God continues to give us, no matter who we are, what we’ve done, or where we are sitting at any given time. Right before our eyes, when we keep them open, are the wonderful gifts that He and He alone can give us. Its up to us to capture them, don’t you think?
Wild, Wild Horses © Amanda Smith, Wyoming Photographer
*(please see notation below my signature line) I photographed this wonderful group of horses using a long lens set at about 70mm with a shutter speed set at 1/400 of a second so that I could freeze as much motion as possible of these beautifully graceful, running horses. I captured this image with a an f-stop (how much light I wanted to let in) of f11 to create a depth of field that allowed much of what I was shooting to remain sharp, including the background. I hoped that my chosen settings would work to create a “pop off the foreground” kind of feeling, while keeping everything including the movement of the horses, crystal clear and sharp. I felt confidant that I had done just that. And I did.
I call this “Wild, Wild horses…” because well, you get the picture, right?
Happy shooting, don’t forget your camera, and God Bless!
Amanda Smith Wyoming photographer
Shooting for Christ, Focusing on God
*photo attached created by Amanda Smith ©2011 – not the actual same group of wild horses photographed in 2007 during the described shoot above. That image, although created in the exact same manner, was lost in a hard drive crash during the upload of the described shoot. We were able to study the wonderful photos I captured that day, and moments later those photos were gone forever. We hope you don’t mind that since the story and the settings were waiting to be told, that we included an equally wonderful photograph captured by Amanda Smith Wyoming in 2011