• Sue Steiner

3 Easy Tips on Photographing your Horse


3 Easy Tips on Photographing your Horse 

  1. In Natural Light, No flash 


Stall and interior barn photos can be really tricky.  Outside, without strong shadows on your horse.  If the sun is out, have the sun behind you, over your shoulder.  


Horses face fills the frame.  


Outside, in natural light, allows the animals correct coloring to show.  

      2.  Stand back and zoom in – have horse’s body or head fill the frame.  

     Try aiming at the horse’s shoulder at a slight angle to correct lens distortion.  



Same horse, same lighting, same setting, at a slight angle which corrected the distortion giving him a look of big ears, big nose.  Although the above photos aren’t ‘great’ photos, the bottom photo looks more like the horse.  He has a pretty head in real life but if you only saw the first photo you wouldn’t know that.  

       3.  Keep the photo’s file size large- DO NOT COMPRESS the photo.  


           Many people use social media accounts, such as Facebook, to store favorite photos.  


           The problem often is that the photos uploaded there are automatically reduced in file size which determines the number of pixels in the photo so when the photo is viewed in a larger size it becomes blurry or ‘pixellated’ and the details are lost. 


** An easy way to tell if a photo is pixelated is to simply zoom in on it.  If the photo gets blurry quickly, the file size is too small to retain details.  Often times, owners will see a small sized file and/ or dark, out of focus photo and automatically ‘fill in’ the details they know in their pet or horse….but as time goes by, and your visual memory fades, that becomes less possible.  It is worth it to check your phone’s settings to see the file size and save fav photos in a photo saving site such as Google Photo or Flickr.   



Crop from a larger sized file allows for the details to be retained.  

Besides that the bottom photo has the pony’s forelock braided so you can see her face, the larger sized file allows the features to remain clear compared to the crop from the small (compressed) sized file.  

As an animal artist, I receive photos from people when they want to commission me to paint a portrait of the horse or pet.  I always keep in mind that not everyone has an abundance of clear, in focus photos of their pet or horse which may be one reason why they are asking for a painting.  I do feel bad though when I may not be able to recreate their pet or horse in great detail from blurry, dark, out of focus photos or photos from odd angles that distort the animals color, size and body build.  

The same tips above can be applied to your dog or cat, adding one more simple tip- 

get on their level or bring them to your level if your mobility hinders you getting on the floor.  

Most cell phones now can take really great photos so don’t fret about needing fancy equipment or special technical knowledge unless you wish to learn more about photography.  These tips are for those of you who don’t want to dabble in photography but just desire some nice photos.  And as a pet portrait artist, I highly recommend this to anyone with a special pet or horse if anywhere down the line you may decide to get a painting done.  

Hope this is helpful to you.  I always appreciate shares on social media so thank you in advance for sharing this article.  

If you would like more information on pet portraits or custom horse paintings, please visit https://www.horseartonline.com  I have more of my own photography there too in addition to shareable, inspirational horse themed memes.  



#easytipsforbetterhorsephotos #horsephotography #petportraits #tipsforphotographingyourhorse

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© Copyright 2023. No animals were harmed in the making

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