3 ISSUES FOR JUST £3 Subscribe to Lancashire Life today click here

Artist profile - Rob Powell, Horseplay photography

PUBLISHED: 18:00 17 May 2016

Patience is the secret to horse photography

Patience is the secret to horse photography

Rob Powell

Photographer Rob Powell has a passion for raw, natural shots of horses. Here, he opens up his portfolio for Lancashire Life readers

Rob strives for a raw, natural lookRob strives for a raw, natural look

They say dog is man’s best friend but Lancashire photographer Rob Powell isn’t so sure. He puts up a pretty convincing case for the horse.

‘If you go back through history you see countless examples of man and horse working together,’ he said. ‘They’ve stood side-by-side in many situations.’

An image from Robs trip to IndiaAn image from Robs trip to India

Rob has a compelling piece of evidence in the form of a recently discovered black-and-white photograph of his great-grandfather posing proudly with his horse somewhere in France in the first World War. ‘He was in a cavalry and I’m trying to do some research to find out exactly where it was taken.’

While his great-grandfather was obviously skilled in dealing with horses Rob, who is from near Prestwich, admits that he doesn’t come from a ‘horsey’ background.

A rare shot of Rob on horsebackA rare shot of Rob on horseback

He became fascinated by them when he started taking event pictures while studying for a degree at what is now Manchester Metropolitan University.

‘I really enjoyed working with horses and people connected to the equestrian world because you get such an interesting mix of people,’ he said. ‘I started offering horse portraits and all things to do with horses and riding.

Rob started taking portraits after leaving universityRob started taking portraits after leaving university

‘I also have a passion for travel so I try to combine the two things – from the Appleby Horse Fair to horse racing in India. Next up I want to photograph Caspian horses in Iran and I also want to push the fine art side of what I do.

‘I’m fascinated by the relationship between a horse and its owner. You can see this very clearly in the show ring. It’s something I strive to capture – the way people express themselves with their horses. I can do fashion-style horse photography but I really enjoy a more raw, natural style.’

Rob, who is also a commercial photographer, encourages people to communicate with the horse rather than force them into situations where they are uncomfortable. ‘I concentrate on the horse rather than the rider. I produce pictures that are very natural and the feedback is that I’m not invasive and I capture just what I see. The pictures aren’t all glammed up,’ he said.

‘They can be incredibly difficult so the key to working with horses is listening and observing how they behave and then working around it. Patience is the key. I can spend anything up to two and a half hours with the horse – basically until it becomes fed up with me! But normally, it can be much quicker.

‘I got into it because sports injuries forced me into thinking about new ways of expressing myself. I wanted something that would tie together people and travel and photography was the answer.

‘I keep it affordable because not everyone who has a horse is rich. Some do have them as a Saturday morning plaything but most of the people I deal with live their lives around their horses so they have a good life. It’s a seven day a week commitment, with early hours and in all weathers.’

Rob’s great-grandfather would have agreed, no doubt. w

To see more of Rob’s work go to www.horseplayphotography.co.uk

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Lancashire Life visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Lancashire Life staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Lancashire Life account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Out & About

Yesterday, 00:00

The first ever National GetOutside Day takes place on Sunday 30 September with the aim of getting 1 million people active outdoors across the UK.

Read more

Meet some of the devilishly successful people who make this glorious Ribble Valley town tick.

Read more
Clitheroe
Friday, September 14, 2018

The site was designated Lancashire’s first ever ‘Local Nature Reserve’ in 1968 and is also designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Read more
Lytham
Wednesday, September 12, 2018

A striking sculpture attracts John Lenehan to this circular walk through some oustanding scenery.

Read more
Friday, September 7, 2018

This varied selection of walks are all within ten miles of the Arnside and Silverdale Area of Natural Beauty.

Read more
Arnside Silverdale
Monday, September 10, 2018

Making a television programme about the Lakes has re-affirmed Paul Rose’s deep affection for the area

Read more
Lake District
Friday, September 7, 2018

A succesful application could see the restoration of the Japanese Gardens and the creation of a water sports centre.

Read more

Is it a village? Is it a town? Who cares when the locals take such a pride in making this such a lovely place to visit

Read more
Thursday, August 30, 2018

A new survey method could unlock the secrets of the bog bush cricket in Lancashire following their discovery on Little Woolden Moss, Lancashire Wildlife Trust’s Ellie Sherlock joins the search.

Read more
Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Heritage venues across the region – many of them not normally open to the public – will welcome visitors this month

Read more
Tuesday, August 28, 2018

It’s officially England’s favourite flower and if you want to see some beautiful examples, follow Linda Viney to Mawdesley

Read more
Tuesday, August 21, 2018

A circular walk which skirts the Lune estuary and takes in the Lancaster Canal and the railway line.

Read more

Behind the ancient sandstone facade of Browsholme Hall is a remarkable ethos of 21st century sustainability and care for the environment.

Read more
Bowland
Thursday, August 16, 2018

Keswick really is a gem of a town – just ask anyone from jeweller Brian Fulton to mountaineering legend Sir Chris Bonington

Read more
Keswick

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy



Subscribe or buy a mag today

Local Business Directory

Property Search