By Oscar Collins
Your wedding photos are priceless memories of your big day. You want everything included — even your 4-legged friend if you’re the equestrian sort. However, animals aren’t objects you can pose like a still life. Here’s how to safely include a horse in your wedding photos.
Are you planning on getting married in January to get the best deals? If so, please consider your horse’s physical needs.
Heat and cold stress can activate your horse’s sympathetic nervous system — and it isn’t wired the same as a human’s. Because horses are prey animals, their instinct is to flee. It can endanger you, your guests and the terrified creature itself if it does. Please remember, they are living beings with physical needs and tend to them.
You could pose for a photograph atop your mount — but you’ll probably want to sit side-saddle unless you rock a mini. Even if you stand near your steed, the ground probably leaves a bit to be desired unless you come riding into the church like a character making a dramatic castle entrance in “Game of Thrones.”
Therefore, consider your footwear carefully. You might want to disguise a pair of sneakers under your gown. Guys can get by with a pair of skate shoes or high tops with their tux for a quirky, fashionable look.
Photographers aren’t created equal. When choosing your vendor, ask them what experience they have with taking animal portraits. It requires a different skill set than working with humans alone. They need to know how to position the creature and snap at the right moment if they move.
Again, a horse is a living creature — which can get fatigued. It doesn’t understand that it’s your big day. It only knows that it’s being asked to work and perform, perhaps for hours.
Remain alert to signs of fatigue. If you notice your horse getting less motivated to cooperate or panting or sweating, give them a break. Better yet, schedule your photographs early, perhaps even before the ceremony, so that your 4-legged friend can retire to the barn and rest.
Your wedding photographs are irreplaceable memories of your big day. Safely include your horse in your pictures with these tips.