Archive for November, 2010

Photo Essay: Loudoun Hunt West (November 7, 2010)

This photo essay is posted at KLM Images.

Closeup vs context

Profile for the camera

We were lucky enough to view three different foxes at this meet.  The third resulted in unusable photos but the first produced a long stream of (zoomed in) closeups and the second one, in almost the same spot, produced more distant shots.

Everyone likes a good closeup of a fox, of course.  With a big zoom lens you can often capture fox or rabbit shots like these, when you’re lucky and the stars align, and it’s a great day when that happens.  But that’s a hunting success (captured!) more than a photographic success; almost any shot of a fox or rabbit during a hunt would qualify as success, regardless of quality.

In the second shot, the fox was much further away and out of very effective reach of my lens.  This series of shots aren’t very good fox photos but they are much more interesting hunting photos. Read the rest of this entry »


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Photo Essay: Snickersville Hounds (October 31, 2010)

This photo essay is posted at KLM Images.

Carving up the space

Dominated by the curve of the pond

The curved edge of the pond in the first photo eats a nice semicircle out of the left of the scene.  That alone would make for a pleasing composition, but see also how the grasses curve with the pond, and so do the bodies and especially the tails of the hounds.  Everything reinforces that fundamental curve.

Gothic linear divisions

In the next photo, we have linear architectural elements made up unexpectedly of living creatures.

The accidental formal postures of the hound and the rider, aided by an almost straight horizon, create an inner rectangle and draw the eye into the open space in the back left.  Nothing is moving; all is potential. Read the rest of this entry »


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Photo Essay: Blue Ridge Hunt (October 30, 2010)

This photo essay is posted at KLM Images.


Continuous horizontal curves

This is not the conventional head pose for this formal pack shot, but I was struck by the lines of horizontal arcs.  The eye travels from the rump’s inverted “U” curve to the “U” curve of the coat’s skirt and back to the inverted curve of the horse’s neck.  The echo of the coat’s curve with the belly provides stability.  The combination conveys balance and permanence.

Vertical curves in motion

The horse on the right, by contrast, has vertical arcs, particularly the tail closely echoing the rear.  Unlike the shallow stable arcs in the first picture, these are deeper.  We know the hind leg will straighten, so we see the deep curve as a spring that will uncoil, driving the horse forward.  We also know the matching curve of the tail is impermanent, and that increases the sense of a fleeting second caught and frozen, adding to the sense of motion. Read the rest of this entry »

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Photo Essay: Ashland Bassets (October 10, 2010)

The photo essay is posted at KLM Images.

Pack photos

Multi-headed pack

This was the opening meet for the season, so everyone was well dressed for the occasion and the sporting parson was on hand for the blessing of the hounds.  This year is also the 50th anniversary of the Ashland Bassets, so it was a day of special celebrations.

You can get hunting action anytime but these dress-up occasions are ideal for pack photos, and on this day the weather and circumstances combined to throw up dozens of pack photo opportunities.

Formal pack shots with staff are useful all year round (for newsletters, calendars, etc.), but the informal ones are not to be scorned.  See how the basset with one blue eye peers through the circle set by two other hounds’ tails.  Not easy to tell where one hound begins and the next one ends. Read the rest of this entry »


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