Many of us have taken approximately a thousand-bajillion pictures of our horses. Pictures from shows, pictures of our horses in the pasture, pictures from that great trail ride, pictures of our horses being silly. Sometimes we enjoy looking at these photos on our phones or using them social media, but maybe you’d like to do something more permanent and special with your horse photos. If so, here are a few ideas for getting your photos off the screen and into print.
Make a Big Enlargement
Make a Set of Small Prints
Can’t choose between your favorite shots? No problem—select three or five or seven (odd numbers are usually better for decorating) of your favorite shots and create a collage. This could be a set of individually-framed prints that you hang in one location, or it could be a single large frame with several picture openings of various sizes. In either case, it’s a good idea to make sure your collage is based around a “theme” (one horse, one show, etc…) so it’s more cohesive.
Make a Photo Book
Using an online photo book service (Shutterfly, Blurb, etc.) is a fun and inexpensive way to create a high-quality, lasting keepsake with your horse photos. These are not old-fashioned photo albums, but professionally printed books with photos, text, and decorative art printed right onto the page. Creating books with a lot of custom features may require a bit of a learning curve, but simpler “let-the-computer-do-it” processes are available, too. What makes photo books so nice is that you end up with a real object that people can pick up and flip through, and that you can cherish for years. In my experience, it’s best to pick some kind of “story” or “theme” for your book. This might be photos of a particular horse, a show season, or even a single show. Or maybe a book of your favorite “around-the-barn” moments. It’s up to you.
Choose the Right Photo
No matter what the intended use, make sure you choose the right images. Since printing can be expensive, you want to make sure that the image you choose shows off your (groomed!) horse in an attractive way without any potentially distracting elements (vehicles, wheelbarrows, etc…) that will suddenly become more noticeable when the print is large. It’s also important to make sure the photo is very sharp before blowing it up to a large size, so zoom in to 100% on your computer screen to check for sharpness before printing.
Daniel Johnson is a freelance writer and professional photographer. He’s the author of several books, including How to Raise Horses: Everything You Need to Know, (Voyageur Press, 2014). Dan’s barn is home to Summer, a Welsh/TB cross, Orion, a Welsh Cob, and Mati and Amos, two Welsh Mountain Ponies. Follow him at www.facebook.com/foxhillphoto.