I went away to Springfield, MA for four days to cheer on my friend as she participated in four clinics with Dan James at Equine Affaire. For who has never heard of it, Equine Affaire is a huge horse event held annually. It is half tradeshow, half clinic, and it’s chock full of horse-crazy people. There are demonstrations, a versatility competition, breed exhibits, contests, and lots of shopping opportunities. I have never gone for all four days before, but this year my husband took care of our daughter and said, “have fun, honey!”. 4 days and 1,200 images later, I was home and really missing having a horse!
Equine Affaire presents some challenging shooting environments. The big demonstrations and clinics are held in a huge, cavernous arena with bright overhead lighting. Each night, there is a special show called Fantasia, where performers each get a few minutes to wow the crowd with a special presentation. Some of them perform in the pitch dark with just a spotlight on them. Then there are the smaller rings, which often do not have great lighting. I relied heavily on my fast lenses and a high ISO most of this weekend, and shot exclusively on Manual so I could keep my shutter settings where I needed them to be for the action shots.
Here are some of the images I took!